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September 11, 2012

Brazilian Farmers Opt for more Soy Less Corn, Rice, & Dry Beans

State officials from the three major soybean producing states in Brazil, which are Mato Grosso, Parana, and Rio Grande do Sul, have indicated that the soybean acreage in all three states will increase at the expense of full-season corn, rice and dry bean acres. These three states represent approximately two-thirds of Brazil's total soybean production, one-third of the full-season corn production, and more than half of the safrinha corn production.

Record high international soybean prices are encouraging farmers to plant more soybeans at the expense of domestically consumed crops such as rice, dry beans and full-season corn. Agronomists in Brazil are concerned that farmers may be abandoning their already inadequate crop rotation in favor of more soybeans, but record high soybean prices are a tremendous draw for farmers.

In Mato Grosso, the Institute of Agricultural Economics (Imea) estimates that the farmers in the state will increase their soybean acreage by 12% from 6.9 million hectares to 7.9 million. The total soybean production in the state is expected to be 24 million tons.

The Department of Rural Economics in Parana (Deral) released their first estimate of the 2012/13 growing season late last week and they estimate that the farmers in the state will increase their soybean acreage by 3.9% to 4.57 million hectares. If the weather cooperates, they estimate the state's soybean production at 15 million tons or 38.5% more than last year's drought impacted crop. The full-season corn acreage in the state is expected to decline 13% to 851,000 hectares. Dry bean acreage in the state are also expected to decline 12% to 217,000 hectares.

In Rio Grande do Sul, Emater is forecasting that farmers will opt for more soybeans and less full-season corn, rice, and dry beans. The soybean acreage in the state is expected to increase 6% to 4.4 million hectares. Full-season corn acreage in the state is expected to decline 5.5% to 1.06 million hectares. Rice acreage is expected to decline 2.9% to 1.0 million hectares and dry bean acreage is expected to decline 6% to 55,000 hectares.