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September 23, 2015

Dryer Forecast for Central Brazil slows Early Soybean Planting

Early soybean planting began in Brazil last week, but it remained rather limited because the weather last week ended up being dryer than expected especially in Mato Grosso and central Brazil. The forecast for this week also looks generally dry as well in central Brazil, but there is some rain in the forecast for next week.

The weather in southern Brazil has been just the opposite with heavy rains falling last week especially in Rio Grande do Sul. The forecast this week for southern Brazil continues to call for heavy rains across the region.

As a result of the dryer weather in central Brazil, many farmers in Mato Grosso and central Brazil are going to wait for additional rainfall before they risk planting their soybeans. Usually they like to wait until they receive 2-3 inches of precipitation before they start planting. With high production costs and weak international commodity prices, they will likely take a conservative approach and not risk planting their soybeans too early and run the risk of having to replant if the second batch of rain is delayed.

Delaying the planting of soybeans in Mato Grosso and central Brazil is generally not a problem for the eventual soybean yield. The planting season in central Brazil is very forgiving. Soybeans in Mato Grosso could be planted today, or 30 days from now or even 60 days from now and if the weather cooperated for the remainder of the growing season, there might not be any difference in yield. A delayed soybean planting would probably impact the safrinha corn more than the soybeans.

There is some soybean planting occurring in western Parana and southern Mato Grosso do Sul. Usually, the earliest soybeans are planted in central Mato Grosso, but for the last two years, the earliest soybeans have actually been planted in Parana and it looks like that may be the case again this year. Nationwide, the soybean planting progress in Brazil is probably less than 1%.