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November 12, 2013

Conab Increases Brazilian Soybean Estimate in November Report

Conab released their second estimate of the 2013/14 Brazilian growing season last Friday and they increased the Brazilian soybean estimate and basically left the corn estimate unchanged.

Brazil soybean estimate increased to new record - Conab increased the 2013/14 Brazilian soybean estimate slightly to the range of 87.8 to 90.2 million tons (+7.8% to +10.7% compared to 81.5 mt in 2012/13). The soybean acreage was estimated at 28.7 to 29.6 million hectares (+3.7 to +6.4 compared to 27.7 mha in 2012/13) and the yield was estimated at 3,056 kg/ha (+4% compared to 2,938 kg/ha in 2012/13 - 42.6 bu/ac). If these production figures are achieved, it would set a new record for Brazilian soybean production.

In their commentary they indicated that the soybean acreage was trending higher all across Brazil as farmers opted for less corn and more soybeans. The early soybean planting was delayed initially by irregular rainfall, but the weather has improved and the planting pace has accelerated in recent weeks. They indicated that the delayed planting should not have a negative impact on potential soybean yields.

Conab did not comment on the possibility that farmers may plant a significant amount of safrinha soybeans early next year. There are no historical statistics as to the amount of safrinha soybeans planted in Brazil, but there are reports that farmers in Mato Grosso and Parana may opt for more soybeans and winter wheat in place of some of their safrinha corn.

Brazil corn production down from last year - Conab estimates the full-season corn acreage at 6.38 to 6.61 million hectares (- 3.0% to -6.5% compared to 6.8 mha in 2012/13) and the full-season corn yield at 6,074 kg/ha (-0.6% compared to 6,104 kg/ha in 2012/13 - 94.0 bu/ac). The full-season corn production is estimated at 32.3 to 33.6 million tons (-7.3% to -3.4% compared to 34.8 mt in 2012/13).

In their commentary about the full-season corn crop, they stated that the full-season corn production in southern Brazil would decline by about 7% to 10% and that it would decline by 17% to 22% in the center west region. They cited low corn prices more interest in soybeans as the reason for the decline.

As far as the safrinha corn crop is concerned, they simple carried forward everything from last year. By all indications, Brazilian farmers will reduce their safrinha corn acreage in 2014 due to very low domestic corn prices. Therefore, Conab's Brazilian corn estimate will likely decline when they release a new estimate for safrinha corn production. The safrinha corn crop is very important because it represented more than half of Brazil's total corn crop for the last two years. In the meantime, Brazil's total corn crop is estimated at 78.4 to 79.8 million tons, which is down 1.4% to 3.1% compared to last year's production of 81.0 million tons.

Conab has greatly expanded their monthly reports to include much more information in addition to their regular production estimates. In the report released last Friday they have included the following:

  • Planting and harvesting calendars for each crop by state.
  • Colored production maps for the principal crops.
  • Crop-free periods (vazio sanitario) for soybeans, cotton, and dry beans.
  • Rainfall and soil moisture maps by region and by crop.
  • The weather forecast for the growing season.
  • Input sales.
  • Equipment sales.
  • Cost of production for the major crops.
  • Rural credit availability.
  • Commodity prices.
  • Currency exchange rates.
  • Export figures for the major crops.

If you want to check out the report, log onto www.conab.gov.br and then click on the picture on the bottom of the page titled: 08/11/2013 GRAOS - 2 Levantamento da safra 2013/14 - NOV/2013