October 11, 2011

Mato Grosso Produces Higher Quality Soybeans than United States

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

The soybean farmers in Mato Grosso have some of the highest production costs in Brazil and the world, but they have one big advantage as well, they produce some of the highest quality soybeans in the world. The quality of the soybeans produced in Mato Grosso is superior to any other region of Brazil and certainly superior to the soybeans produced in the United States. This is according to a four-year study conducted by the Federal University of Mato Grosso.

Over the four year period, the study concluded that the protein content of the soybeans grown in Mato Grosso was in the range of 39% to 42% and that the oil content varied from 17% to 22%. The maximum for protein and oil in the U.S. was estimated at 37% and 20% respectively. In other words, the minimum protein and oil content in Mato Grosso soybeans was the maximum for soybeans grown in the United States. The researchers also noted that the quality of the soybeans grown in Mato Grosso was very uniform all across the state.

The higher protein and oil content is the result of the temperatures that the plant encounters during the pod filling period. According to the researchers, the maximum protein and oil content continues to accumulate until the average daily temperature reaches 30 C (86 F), which is obtained in Mato Grosso, but nowhere else in Brazil and certainly not in the majority of the soybean producing regions of the U.S. As a result, the soybeans produced in Mato Grosso meet or exceed the standards set by the processing industry.

Additionally, since the state is so close to the equator (most of the soybeans are produced between 12 degrees and 15 degrees South Latitude) the temperatures are very uniform across the state and it doesn't make much difference if the soybeans are early-maturing or late-maturing varieties, the temperatures meet or exceed 30 C during the entire time the soybeans are filling pods.