Is It Already Too Late For Brazil?

Parana, Brazil's #2 soybean growing state and Rio Grande do Sul, the country's #3 growing state have received only a quarter of last season's rainfall between Nov 1st and Dec 29th, local weather service Somar reports.

Later planted soybeans may still have time to recover, if rains arrive soon, but for corn the party could already be over, some analysts are saying.

In these areas soybean planting is still being completed, for corn however time is just about up.

Parana's state's agricultural secretariat says that corn production in the region could drop by 15-20% from last season. In neighbouring RGDS agronomists agree with him.

Parana produced 11.8mmt of soybeans in 2007-08, whilst RGDS produced 7.7mmt according to Conab. Parana also produced 9.7mmt of corn in the first harvest in 2007-08, whilst RGDS produced 5.3mmt Conab say.

A double whammy of lack of rain and lack of credit is to blame, they say. Without credit farmers have cut back dramatically on fertiliser inputs and irrigation.

With no rain forecast for RGDS until mid-January the situation could get worse still.