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October 5, 2016

Planting of Spring Crops in South America Ahead of Schedule

Brazil soybeans - The 2016/17 Brazilian soybean crop is 5% planted compared to 3% last year and 4% average.

Mato Grosso is the largest soybean producing state in Brazil and according to the Mato Grosso Institute of Agricultural Economics (Imea), the soybeans in Mato Grosso are 5% planted compared to 2% last year. The most advanced planting is in the center-north region where 6.8% of the soybeans have been planted and the western region where 9.9% have been planted. In southern and eastern Mato Grosso, a lot of the areas are still too dry to plant, but the forecast for this week is calling for rain in the dry areas.

In Primavera do Leste for example, which is located in the southeastern Mato Grosso, it is reported that 90% of the farmers are still waiting to start planting due to dry conditions. There are still at least 26 municipalities in Mato Grosso that continue in a "state of emergency" due to the dry conditions that started last April. Fortunately, the forecast is for rain to move into the region sometime this week.

Parana is the second largest soybean producing state in Brazil and the Department of Rural Economics for the state of Parana estimates that the 2016/17 soybean crop in the state is now 27% planted compared to 23% last year. Soybean planting in the state had been slowed somewhat by dry weather, but planting conditions have now improved.

Farmers in the western part of Mato Grosso do Sul on the border with Paraguay are still waiting for adequate soil moisture to plant their soybeans. Near the city of Ponta Pora, most farmers are still waiting while last year at this time, 50% of the soybeans had been planted. The forecast is calling for chances of rain this week in Mato Grosso do Sul.

The Brazilian agricultural research service Embrapa has registered 26 cases of soybean rust in Brazil as of the end of September with all the confirmed cases of rust found in volunteer soybeans. The state of Sao Paulo has 16 cases, Parana has 7 cases, and Mato Grosso has 3 cases. With the forecast for abundant rains during the first half of October, it will be interesting to see when the first cases of rust are confirmed in commercial soybeans.

Brazil full-season corn - The 2016/17 Brazilian full-season corn planting in Brazil is approximately 40% compared to 33% last year and 26% average.

Nearly all of Brazil's full-season corn is planted in southern and southeastern Brazil and the weather last week in that region was on the dry side. The full-season corn in Parana is 68% planted and in Rio Grande do Sul, the full-season corn is 60% planted, both of which are a little ahead of last year's pace. The other main full-season corn state is Minas Gerais and dry weather in the state has delayed somewhat the start of the corn planting in the state. The forecast this week is for generous rains in Minas Gerais, so corn planting in the state should now get off and running if the forecast verifies.

The corn that has emerged in southern Brazil is rated in good condition although the vegetative development has been a little slow due to cool temperatures.

Argentina corn - Farmers in Argentina have planted 21.5% of their intended corn crop as of late last week according to the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange. This is compared to 13% last year and 14% average. Most of the planting thus far has occurred in the east-central and eastern areas where the soil moisture is better. In the central and western areas not much corn planting has occurred as yet due to dry conditions. Some of the most advanced corn in the province of Santa Fe is in the 3-5 leaf stage (V3 to V5). There were some frosts earlier last week in the northern core and southern core regions of Argentina, but there was little if any damage to the newly planted corn.

In the major corn producing province of Cordoba, not much corn has been planted as farmers wait for additional moisture. Corn planting in Argentina is a long drawn out affair and the corn planting will not conclude until sometime next January.

Argentina soybeans - There have been no reports of soybeans being planted in Argentina as of yet. Soybean planting in Argentina usually gets started during the first week of October if the conditions are suitable.