March 1, 2017
Argentine Crops Continue to Benefit from Favorable Weather
Argentina soybeans - The weather in Argentina last week was generally favorable and the area that benefited the most from the rain was southern Buenos Aires where the soil moisture has now been recharged from earlier dry weather. There was probably too much rain in the northern core and southern core regions of central Argentina where some of the soybeans were drowned out in the lower lying regions. There was also some localize flooding reported in Chaco province in northern Argentina.
The early planted soybeans are generally rated 90% good to excellent. The double crop and later planted soybeans are starting to flower. Disease and insect pressure appears to be normal at this point. Outside of the flooded areas, yields are expected to be better than the last several years. There have not been any soybeans harvested as yet and I not expect to hear of any harvesting until about mid-March.
The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange reported late last week that the recent rains in Argentina were generally beneficial for the soybeans that were entering into the critical pod setting and pod filling period. They estimated that 60% of the soybeans were setting pods and filling pods and that 10% of the soybean seeds were at maximum size (R6 growth stage).
The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange left their 2016/17 soybean estimate unchanged at 54.8 million tons, but they did not say that it could increase in future reports, which is a change from prior reports when they said that it could move higher. I don't want to read too much into this. Maybe the author just forgot to mention their future bias (it has happened to me in the past), or maybe they are actually neutral going forward.
Argentina corn - The early corn harvest in Argentina is getting off to a somewhat slow start due to persistent wet weather that has resulted in high moisture grain and problems with truck traffic on some of the rural roads.
Most of the early corn that has been harvested is in the provinces of Santa Fe and Entre Rios where good early yields have been reported. The harvest pace will accelerate in coming weeks as more of the early planted corn matures. The later planted corn is generally in good condition except for some excess moisture in Entre Rios. The later planted corn is transitioning into its reproductive phase with the majority of the crop rated in good conditions with some localized excessive moisture in the province of Chaco in northern Argentina.
Soil moisture in Buenos Aires province has been recharged, but in some areas, excess moisture has kept tractors and sprayers out of the fields.
The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange left its corn estimate unchanged at 37.0 million tons which is 23% more than last year's production.