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December 29, 2020

2020/21 Argentina Corn Only 61% Planted vs. 80% Average

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

Rainfall in Argentina continues to be scattered with less than ideal coverage. This has allowed some areas to maintain adequate soil moisture while other areas are rated short to very short on soil moisture. The best rains over the holiday weekend were across the western areas. The forecast is calling for improved chances of rainfall mid-week and then a return of hotter and dryer conditions later this week and into next week.

Two things led me to lower the corn estimate. First, the corn in Argentina was rated only 20% good to excellent as of the middle of last week. Given the weather since then, the percentage rated good to excellent could decline again this week. Obviously, that is a very low number.

Secondly, I do not think that all the intended corn acreage will end up being planted. It is already the end of December, the weather continues to be problematic and there are only a couple of weeks left in the planting window. In the face of adverse weather, farmers may opt to not risk planting an expensive corn crop later than normal.

Corn in Argentina was 61.2% planted last week compared to 76% last year and 80.2% average. This represented an advance of 6% for the week. In the core production areas, the corn was 90% planted with 75-85% planted in the southern areas and less than 5% planted in far northern Argentina.

The early corn was 64.5% planted and the late corn was 57.6% planted. The nationwide corn crop was 20.3% pollinating compared to 43% last year and 39.4% average and 3.7% filling grain

The corn was rated 15% poor to very poor, 64% fair, and 20% good to excellent. The good to excellent compares to 24% last week and 32% last year. The soil moisture for the corn was rated 24% short to very short and 76% favorable to optimum. The favorable to optimum compares to 81% last week and 66% last year.

Dryer than normal conditions continue to slow the corn planting and the corn development. It is already the end of December and the corn planting is about 20% behind the average planting pace. The corn planting window in Argentina will close in 2-3 weeks and unless the weather improves quickly allowing a more rapid planting pace, I don't think the farmers in Argentina will plant all their intended corn acreage.