Dry weather across some of the major producing regions in South America is putting upward pressure on corn and soybean prices at the start the new year. Dryness is expected to continue through the short term across southern Brazil and especially in the main-producing states in Argentina.
Brazil's corn production forecast for 2020-21 has been cut to 102.6 million mt from 104.9 million mt projected in November, Brazil's national agricultural agency, Companhia Nacional de Abastecimento (Conab), said in its latest forecast.
U.S. soybean futures rose for a sixth consecutive session on Friday and hit a four-year high on dry conditions in key South American crop areas and concerns about dwindling U.S. supplies. Corn also gained on strong exports and worries about South American dryness, while wheat ended mixed.
Corn production in Argentina is likely to drop to 48 million tons in 2020-21 from 50 million tons in 2019-20, the US Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service in Buenos Aires said in a report released on Thursday.
Experts say the wildfires in a region that spans Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, and Paraguay – especially the region between the Paraguay, Parana, and Uruguay rivers – have become critical in 2020.
Fires are raging in the wetlands of west-central Brazil, leaving behind a vast swath of charred ruins in a paradise of biodiversity. The enormous fires have destroyed nearly 12% of the world’s largest tropical wetland, partially reducing to ashes one of the most biologically diverse ecosystems on the planet.
Fires are raging in Argentina’s Cordoba province, prompting evacuations and threatening to destroy homes, fueled in part by strong winds and a lack of rain, officials said on Monday.
Due to the Paraná river drought, which affected Argentina’s soy oil-exporting capacity, Cattalini Terminais Marítimos, which handles almost 70% of Brazil’s soy oil exports through its facilities in the port of Paranaguá, predicts a 25% increase in shipments this year.
The world's largest operational hydroelectric dam, Itaipu Plant announced that starting next Monday, May 18, it will open its spillway to help Paraguay and Argentina, which are suffering from a drought and hence having problems transporting their grain harvest.
The governments of Argentina and Brazil are in talks to release water from the giant Itaipu Dam with a view to topping up the Parana River, where ebbing levels are conspiring against a US$ 20-billion-a-year crop export business.