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May 23, 2019

Brazil's Corn Exports could Exceed 30 Million Tons in 2019

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

Brazilian farmers are getting ready to harvest what they hope will be a very good safrinha corn crop. The safrinha corn crop is the second crop of corn planted after the first crop of soybeans are harvested and it will represent approximately 72% of Brazil's total corn crop in 2018/19. It is the safrinha corn crop that accounts for the majority of Brazil's corn exports. The full-season corn crop, which is produced in mainly southern Brazil, is used for the domestic livestock industry concentrated in southern Brazil.

According to a spokesperson for the National Association of Grain Exporters (Anec) and reported by Reuters, a good safrinha corn crop could result in as much as 30 million tons or more of Brazilian corn exports in 2019. Brazilian corn exports in 2019 will easily surpass the 22 million tons of corn exported in 2018. Corn exports were down in 2018 due to a very disappoint safrinha corn crop in 2017/18. The record for Brazilian corn exports was 30.7 million tons set in 2015 and Brazil has now become the second largest corn exporter in the world after the United States.

While Anec is optimistic concerning Brazil's corn exports in 2019, they are more cautious when it comes to Brazil's 2019 soybean exports. They are estimating Brazil's 2019 soybean exports at 65 million tons, which is down from their April estimate of 67 million tons.

The lower estimate was the result of the widening problem with African swine fever in China and the resulting decrease in China's hog herd and subsequent demand for soybean meal. But, this estimate was made before the recent large purchases of Brazilian soybeans by China.

Last year, Brazil exported a record 82.9 million tons of soybeans due to the trade dispute between the United States and China. In 2017, Brazil exported 67.6 million tons of soybeans.