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November 29, 2018

Planting of 2018/19 Crops in Argentina a little slower than Average

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

Soybean planting in Argentina slowly returned to a more normal pace last week after the very heavy rains of the previous week. The heavy rains over a short period of time resulted in localized flooding and saturated conditions in sections of Santa Fe, eastern Cordoba and parts of central and northern Buenos Aires.

In their latest weekly bulletin, the Rosario Exchange reported that 300,000-500,000 hectares of soybeans in the core production region of Argentina may have been lost due to the heavy rains and localized flooding. Approximately 3 million hectares have been planted in the region. Central Argentina is experiencing dryer weather which should help in draining away the excess water giving farmers a chance to replant some of their drowned out soybeans.

The soybeans in Argentina were 29.6% planted late last week according to the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange. The soybean planting advanced 7.9% last week, but it is still 4.4% behind last year's pace. In the core production areas, the soybeans are 45-55% planted with 10-50% planted in southern Argentina and less than 1% planted in far northern Argentina.

In their latest weekly report, the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange rated the soybeans as 3.5% very poor, 20.7 poor, 58.7 fair, 17.1% good, and 0% excellent. The soil moisture for the soybeans was rated 0.9% very short, 5.9% short, 43.2% favorable, 42.9% optimum, and 7.1% surplus. The soybean ratings declined due mainly to excessive rains that fell two weeks ago.

The corn planting in Argentina advanced only 0.6% last week to 36.8% complete. In the core production regions, the corn is 85-90% planted with 40-50% planted in southern Argentina and there has not been any corn planted in far northern Argentina. The majority of the early planted corn is in vegetative development, but some of the earliest planted corn has started to pollinate.

Corn planting in Argentina is divided into two phases. The first phase of planting starts in September and ends about the end of October. Farmers in Argentina plant very little corn during November because if they did, the corn would pollinate in January which can be the hottest and driest time of the summer. The second phase of planting starts in December and finishes sometime in late January.

This year, less than 40% of the corn will be planted during the first phase and over 60% planted during the second phase. The percentage of corn planted during the first phase has continued to decline in recent years. Corn planting in Argentina is becoming more like Brazil all the time with more corn planted later and later. In fact, some of the earliest corn in Argentina will be maturing at the same time the latest corn is still being planted.

In their weekly report, the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange rated the early planted corn in Argentina as 0.8% very poor, 10.5% poor, 46.2% fair, 36.4% good, and 6.2% excellent. The soil moisture for the corn is rated 0.1% very short, 8.6% short, 50.2% favorable, 29.6% optimum, and 11.5% surplus. The condition of the corn improved a little last week and some of the excess moisture declined.