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November 15, 2017

Reuters Survey - Average Brazil Soy Production 109.4 Million Tons

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

The planting of the 2017/18 soybean crop in Brazil was 57% complete as of last Thursday with many farmers in Mato Grosso essentially done planting. The soybean planting started off very slow due to dry weather across central Brazil. Over the last two weeks, the rainfall in central Brazil has increased and so too has the planting pace. The last two regions of Brazil to plant soybeans are in the northeastern part of the country and in the southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul.

Farmers in northeastern Brazil plant their soybeans generally later than the rest of the country because the rainy season starts later in northeastern Brazil. Northeastern Brazil received good rains this week and there are more showers in the forecast. As a result, farmers in the region are actively planting their soybeans. The farmers in northeastern Brazil plant approximately 12% of Brazil's soybeans.

In the southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul, soybeans are planted later because many of the soybeans are planted after the winter wheat is harvested. Farmers are now harvesting their wheat and the soybeans in the state are approximately 30% planted. The state of Rio Grande do Sul plants approximately 16% of Brazil's soybeans.

In a recent survey conducted by Reuters with 11 analysts in Brazil, they reported that the average estimate of the 2017/18 Brazilian soybean crop was 109.4 million tons, which was just slightly larger than the average estimate in October. The soybean acreage in Brazil averaged 34.80 million hectares (85.9 million acres), which is slightly more than the 34.77 million hectares reported in October. The average acreage estimate is 2.6% more than last year.

The soybean acreage is up compared to last year because many farmers in southern Brazil decided to reduce their full-season corn acreage in favor of more soybeans due to the low corn price and better returns for soybeans.

Of the 11 analysts, some increased their soybean estimate from last month and some lowered their estimate from last month. The difference between the highest and lowest estimate in the Reuters survey was nearly 9 million tons. One thing they all agreed on, the 2017/18 Brazilian soybean production will be lower than the 114.0 million tons produced in 2016/17 when conditions were nearly ideal the entire growing season.

Some representative estimates include:

  • AgRural is estimating the crop at 110.2 mt compared to 109.9 mt in October.
  • Franca Junior Consultoria is estimating the crop at 112.3 mt compared to 114.7 mt in October.
  • Rabobank is estimating the crop at 107 mt compared to 109 mt in October.
  • INTL FCStone is estimating the crop at 106.07 mt compared to 106.73 mt in October.