Soybean crop prospects in Brazil and Argentina, the second- and third-biggest exporters of the oilseed behind the U.S., have improved, researcher Oil World said in a report Tuesday. Growers in Brazil will produce 73 million metric tons of soybeans, up from a record 68.7 million tons a year ago, and farmers in Argentina will harvest 49.5 million tons, up 1% from a prior estimate.
World consumption of soybeans is expected by the US Department of Agriculture to jump 7.5% to 255.8 million tons in the year through Aug. 31.
In Argentina, “soybean production prospects have improved, primarily in Chaco and in the northern regions where initial harvesting has been made,” the researcher said. In Brazil, “soybean production has turned out higher than expected and probably surpassed last year’s record.”
Farmers in Argentina have been reluctant to sell soybeans, Oil World said. Only 2% of the crop sold in March, down from 4% a year earlier, and 5% sold in April, compared with 10% in 2010, according to the report. Farmers had sold only a fourth of this year’s soybean crop, a six-year low, selling corn and wheat first, the researcher said.
Growers also may be hoping for higher prices as planting delays in North America contribute to higher prices, according to the report. Political doubt in Argentina, which has national elections on Oct. 23, may also be curbing selling by farmers, speculates Oil World.
Argentine export sales in the country totalled 800,000 tons in April, down from 2.3 million tons a year ago, and will also be down “sharply” from last year in May according to shipment nominations, Oil World said. Exports will total about 2 million tons in May, down from 2.62 million a year earlier, according to the report.
Farmers in the Commonwealth of Independent States will expand production of the oilseed, Oil World anticipates. Output in the region, which includes Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan, will be 3.54 million tons, up 14% from 2010, according to the report. The Ukraine crop may be 1.9 million tons, the most-ever, and exports may reach a record 1.1 million tons, Oil World said.
“Soybeans have enjoyed increasing attractiveness among farmers in several regions owing to improved yields and favourable returns per hectare,” the researcher said. “Ukraine is likely to harvest a record soybean crop, which may boost soybean exports to a record”.