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March 20, 2018

Rains Offer Limited Help to Soy Crop in Argentina, More Needed

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

There were some rains over the weekend in heart of the production area. The amounts were in the range of 1-2 inches, but the coverage was confined to generally southeastern Cordoba, far southern Santa Fe, and northern Buenos Aires. Where they fell, the rains did help the crops, but the coverage was probably not widespread enough to change the overall dry pattern for the country. In addition, the rains were too late for the early maturing soybeans.

Before the rains over this past weekend, the overall soybean crop in Argentina was rated approximately 80% poor to very poor and 88% short to very short on soil moisture. The early planted soybeans are 28% mature and approximately 2% harvested. Early yields are highly variable as you would expect. In some parts of Cordoba, early yields are in the range of 2,000 to 2,400 kg/ha (29 to 35 bu/ac) compared to last year's yields of 4,000 to 4,500 kg/ha (58 to 65 bu/ac).

The later planted soybeans are faring worse than the early soybeans, so the weekend rains were beneficial for the later planted soybeans where they fell. The later planted soybeans are 15% filling pods, so any additional rains will help the crop.

The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange left their estimate of the 2017/18 soybean crop unchanged last week at 42.0 million tons. The Rosario Exchange lowered their estimate to 40.0 million tons based on a harvested area of 16.96 million hectares and a nationwide yield of 2,360 kg/ha (34.2 bu/ac).

The governors of the provinces Cordoba, Santa Fe and Buenos Aires met recently at an agricultural fair to coordinate their responses to the drought. They are planning to request an emergency deceleration from the federal government for all three provinces due to the ongoing drought.