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November 11, 2014

2014/15 Wheat in Argentina Negatively Impacted by Wet Weather

Heavy rains in recent weeks in parts of Argentina have impacted the maturing wheat crop. The heavy rains will probably result in more fungal diseases in the maturing wheat crop, lower quality grain, and lower yields than what was previously estimated. The hardest hit province appears to be Buenos Aires which produces approximately 60% of Argentina's wheat crop. The early wheat harvest has started, but most of the wheat is still in the grain filling stage. The wheat crop in Argentina is 9% harvested with most of the harvesting occurring in the far northern production regions.

The majority of the wheat in Argentina is still rated in very good condition (56%), but the percentage of the wheat rated as average increased from 5% to 11% last week. In the hardest hit areas, yield losses will be at least 10% and there will probably be quality issues as well.

In addition to the impact of flooding in the low lying areas, there are reports of hail damage and wind damage from the heavy storms. The Grain Exchange in Buenos Aires is estimating the wheat crop at 11.5 million tons, but that may now be optimistic.

Brazilian wheat crop - In the state of Rio Grande do Sul in southern Brazil, the wheat crop is approximately 50% harvested and the yields and grain quality have fluctuated as the harvest has progressed. Excessive rains during the growing season and during the harvest has led to poor seed quality and lower yields. Conab will release its updated crop assessment on Tuesday, November 11 and many analysts are expecting the Brazilian wheat production to come in below Conab's current estimate of 7.6 million tons. Many analysts estimate the Brazilian wheat crop in the range of 6 million tons.