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December 2, 2016

November Rainfall in Mato Grosso do Sul 42% of Normal

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

Farmers in Mato Grosso do Sul are glad that November is over because the weather during the month was very dry. On average, the state received only 42% of the normal November rainfall which is approximately 160 mm (6.4 inches). The southern half of the state is the driest and that is where a majority of the soybeans are produced. Some locations in southern Mato Grosso do Sul received virtually no rainfall over the past 30 days. The state capital of Campo Grande received 28% of its normal November rainfall.

According to Conab, farmers in the state are expected to plant approximately 2.48 million hectares of soybeans or about 7.3% of Brazil's total 2016/17 soybean acreage.

There is some rain in the forecast and it will be needed because in addition to being dry, the temperatures have been increasing as well. Daytime temperatures are now in the range of 35°C (95°F), which is increasing the water demand of the soybean crop.

Rainfall going forward would help to revive the soybeans, but many farmers in the driest areas feel they have already lost as much as 20% of the yield potential because the soybeans were flowering and starting to set pods during the dry period. Some farmers have already called out their crop insurance agent in order to establish confirmation of loses.

If this growing season ends up disappointing, it will be the second year in a row that farmers in southern Mato Grosso do Sul have suffered crop losses. During the 2015/16 growing season, heavy rains delayed the soybean harvest which resulted in disappointing soybean yields. The delayed soybean harvest also delayed the planting of the second crop of corn which then ran out of water when the summer rains ended early than normal resulting in very low corn yields. Farmers were hoping that this harvest could help to pay off some of the bills left over from the last growing season.

Last growing season was very disappointing, too much rain during the soybean harvest delayed harvesting and delayed safrinha corn planting and then it turned very dry hurting the corn.