Argentine Wheat Plantings In A Stunningly Bad Way

If ever you needed some news to proof that tonight's losses on CBOT were overdone then this surely has to be it.

The Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange said in it's weekly crop report Wednesday that Argentine farmers will now only plant 3.2 million hectares of wheat in 2009.

To try and attempt to put that into perspective, get a grip on this:

That is half a million hectares less than they were forecasting just a week ago, and the figure then was the lowest on record.

This number is now almost half the area planted with wheat just two years ago.

The revised acreage now amounts to a 30.4% decrease on what was planted last year.

If you want any worse you can have it:

Soil moisture profiles are so poor that the final planted area could fall further the Exchange say. Well, if it can drop half a million hectares in a week then anything can happen.

Not only that, but the area planted so far amounts to just 420,000 hectares, slightly more than half of what was planted at this time last year, and little more than a third of what was seeded in 2007 at this time.

As well as the severe drought, which has now lasted almost eighteen months, lack of credit and political concerns are also behind the dramatic fall in plantings the Exchange say.

Food for thought: if Argentina only gets the same yield as last year, then they will be looking at a crop of less than 6 MMT in 2009. That's 10 MMT below their output just two years ago, and well below their domestic requirements, turning them from fifth largest exporter in the world to net importer in just two years!