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August 9, 2016

Harvesting and Planting Corn at the Same Time in Southern S.A.

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

I have been involved in South American agriculture for a long time, but this the first time I can recall this happening. Farmers in Rio Grande do Sul, which is Brazil's southernmost state, have already started planting their 2016/17 full-season corn crop while farmers in Argentina are still trying to harvest their 2015/16 corn crop.

It may have happened before and I just never noticed, but I think we can say for sure that the early corn planting in Brazil has started extra early, while the late corn harvest in Argentina is occurring extra late. The strange thing is that this is not happening thousands of kilometers apart, the harvesting and planting of corn at the same time is happening a few hundred kilometers apart and at about the same latitude.

The first reports of corn being harvested in Argentina were issued on March 21st when 4% of the corn had been harvested. It's now four and a half months later and the corn harvest in Argentina has just now reached 66% complete.

Farmers in Argentina have been planting their corn later and later in recent years and the results have generally been positive. This year, trying to harvest the late-planted corn has been a lesson in frustration. The persistent wet weather has prevented the corn from drying down in the field. Additionally, the lack of drying capacity and expensive natural gas has made the situation worse.