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November 3, 2017

Slow Soy Planting in Goias could impact Safrinha Corn Production

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

Of the major soybean producing states in Brazil, the state of Goias is furthest behind in planting the 2017/18 soybean crop. According to the Soybean and Corn Producers Association of Goias (Aprosoja-GO), by the end of October, less than 10% of the intended soybeans had been planted compared to 25% last year. In some of the major soybean producing regions of the state, soybean planting might have been only 5% complete by the end of October compared to last year when it could have been as high as 80% complete by the end of October.

The state of Goias is the fourth largest soybean producing state in Brazil after Mato Grosso, Parana, and Rio Grande do Sul. It is also a major safrinha corn producing state ranking fourth behind Mato Grosso, Parana, and Mato Grosso do Sul.

The ideal soybean planting window in the state closes about November 10th. Since the soybean planting is already getting very late, farmers in the state are being advised to do a good job on plating their soybeans and not to rush the planting just to allow enough time for a second crop to be planted after the soybeans are harvested. Farmers in the state make their living primarily on their soybean production, so their top priority should be trying to plant the soybeans as good as possible.

The bigger problem for farmers in the state is going to be trying to get the safrinha corn crop planted in a timely manner. Most of the soybean varieties recommended for the state of Goias are 105 to 115 day maturity. Therefore, if these maturity soybeans are planted in mid-November, they would not be harvested until early to mid-March.

The ideal planting window for safrinha corn in the state closes about the third week of February, so if farmers want to plant a second crop after that date, they may consider planting an alternative crop such as grain sorghum, dry beans, sunflower, or a ground cover that could improve the soil structure for the next crop.

Some farmers have already indicated that they intend to reduce their safrinha corn acreage due to the delayed soybean planting in addition to using less technology such as fertilizers, chemicals and seeds on their safrinha corn. Farmers may avoid planting safrinha corn on marginal areas where corn yields might be lower and they may reduce fertilizer use by 20% to 30%.