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January 18, 2017

Brazilian Trip Report - Goias and Southeastern Mato Grosso

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

We arrived in Sao Paulo last Friday and spent the weekend driving to Mato Grosso. To get here we traveled through the states of Sao Paulo, western Minas Gerais, southwestern Goias and then southeastern Mato Grosso.

Weather - The weather in southeastern and central Brazil has been quite wet the last week or so. Every place we drove the soils were wet and there were areas of standing water on the edges of the fields. Yesterday we drove through numerous downpours throughout the day. Today in Mato Grosso it is warm and cloudy and it is raining again. Southern Goias and western Minas Gerais had some dry weather in December and early January, but those concerns have now been resolved.

Even in northeastern Brazil, there have been scattered showers that brought some relief to the dryness. Western Bahia appears to be the region where they continue to miss out on the rains.

Goias - I would categorize the soybeans in Goias as variable. The early maturing soybeans are turning yellow and a few fields have already been harvested. These early soybeans are not very good, they are very short in height and low yielding and they were impacted by the previous dry weather. The medium and later maturing soybeans are green and lush. With the recent rains, I think these soybeans will obtain a good yield potential. The health of the later soybeans looked fine.

In Goias, I would estimate that about 25% of the fields are turning yellow and will be ready for harvest within 2 weeks. We only saw 1-2 fields that were harvested and we did not see a single tractor in the field spraying or doing any type of field work. If the current wet weather persists, there could be a problem with the early harvest.

Southeastern Mato Grosso - The early maturing soybeans are turning yellow with some already harvested. We even saw a few fields of safrinha cotton that had already been planted and is emerged. The early maturing soybeans in southeastern Mato Grosso have the same problem as in Goias. They are very short and relatively low yielding. The medium and later maturing soybeans are green and lush and should do fine. I was surprised how small some of the soybeans were. It is obvious that not all the soybeans had been planted extra early as has been reported.

According to AgRural, the 2016/17 Brazilian soybean crop is 1.1% harvested compared to 0.3% last year at this time. The state of Mato Grosso is 5% harvested compared to 2% last year. Most of the harvesting in Mato Grosso is in the western and central parts of the state, which is a 1-2 day drive from Rondonopolis. We are planning to go to central Mato Grosso over the weekend.

We saw only a few fields of corn thus far and all the corn we saw looked good. The corn crop will depend on the safrinha corn crop and I think the safrinha corn will get planted under good conditions.