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July 12, 2019

Conab Increases 2018/19 Brazilian Corn 1.5 mt to 98.5 Million Tons

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

In their July Crop Report, Conab increased the 2018/19 Brazilian corn estimate by 1.5 million tons to 98.5 million and they increased the 2018/19 Brazilian soybean estimate by 0.2 million tons to 115.0 million.

The 2018/19 Brazilian corn estimate of 98.5 million tons represents an increase of 17.7 million tons compared to last year's crop, or an increase of 22%. The increase in this month's estimate was entirely due to a larger estimate for the safrinha corn production. Conab is now estimating the safrinha corn production at 72.3 million tons or 1.7 million tons more than last month. The safrinha corn production is now 18.4 million tons larger than last year or up +34.2%.

The safrinha corn acreage is now estimated at 12.35 million hectares (30.5 million acres), which is up +7.1% compared to last year. The safrinha corn yield is estimated at 5,857 kg/ha (90.1 bu/ac), which is up +25.3% compared to last year. The safrinha corn production now represents 73% of Brazil's total corn production.

Brazilian farmers planted nearly all their safrinha corn during the ideal planting window in January and February and the weather was generally beneficial during the entire growing season. The only negative for the crop was too much rainfall during the early harvest which resulted in some poor quality grain.

The top four safrinha corn producing states are Mato Grosso with 30.9 million tons (42.7% of the total, Parana at 13.6 million tons (18.7% of the total), Mato Grosso do Sul at 9.9 million tons (13.6% of the total), and Goias at 8.1 million tons (11.1% of the total).

The 2018/19 Brazilian soybean production is now estimated at 115.0 million tons, which is down -3.6% from last year's production of 119.2 million tons.

The 2018/19 Brazilian soybean acreage was 35.86 million hectares (88.5 million acres), which is up +2% compared to last year. The soybean yield is estimated at 3,207 kg/ha (47.4 bu/ac), which is down -5.5% compared to last year.

The top five soybean producing states are Mato Grosso with 32.4 million tons (28.1% of the total), Rio Grande do Sul with 19.1 million tons (16.6% of the total), Parana with 16.2 million tons (14.0% of the total), Goias with 11.4 million tons (9.9% of the total), and Mato Grosso do Sul with 8.5 million tons (7.3% of the total).

An interesting quirk in Brazil this year is that the state of Rio Grande do Sul jumped into second position for soybean production surpassing Parana, which traditionally holds the second position. This is probably a one-time event because Parana's 2018/19 soybean production was severely impacted by a prolonged period of dry weather from late November to early January. The dry weather coincided with the pod filling period for the early maturing soybeans, thus resulting in lower yields. I expect Parana will regain its second position in the 2019/20 growing season.