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Brazil kicks off soybean, summer corn harvests at below-average pace: AgRural

Sao Paulo (Platts)--12 Jan 2018 628 pm EST/2328 GMT


The soybean and summer corn harvests in the 2017-18 season are slowly starting in Brazil, behind the pace seen in recent years, consultancy AgRural said Friday.

As of Thursday, 0.1% of the total planted area for soybeans had been harvested, below 1.1% a year ago and under the five-year average of 0.3% for the same period. An early harvest is seen in Mato Grosso, Brazil's largest grain producer and where planting generally starts first. AgRural said 0.3% of Mato Grosso's soybean fields were harvested as of Thursday, down from 4% last year.

"There were delays in planting due to insufficient rain, so few Mato Grosso areas are ready to harvest," AgRural said in a report.

It added that farmers must keep focused on the weather forecast, as heavy rain expected in the coming weeks could hamper harvest work and spoil bean quality in the case of high precipitation levels.

While other states historically kick off their harvests close to the same time as Mato Grosso -- such as Parana, Mato Grosso do Sul and Goias -- AgRural said there was no progress worth noting in recent days in those areas, also due to delays in the sowing period.

AgRural said Thursday that Brazil would harvest 114 million mt of soybeans this season, nearly matching the record of 114.1 million mt seen in 2016-17.

Sources note that the pace of the soybean harvest can influence the winter corn crop, which is sown immediately after and accounts for almost two-thirds of Brazilian corn production.

As for the summer corn crop, AgRural said the harvest has already started in Rio Grande do Sul state. The pace of harvest has accordingly reached 0.1% of the total planted area in the Center-South region, below the five-year average of 0.5% for the period.

--Gustavo Bonato, gustavo.bonato@spglobal.com --Edited by Lisa Miller, lisa.miller@spglobal.com




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