Back
February 12, 2021

Conab Increases Soy Est. Slightly, Corn Estimate Increased 3.1 mt

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

In their fifth evaluation of the 2020/21 Brazilian crops released February 11, Conab increased the Brazilian soybean estimate by 0.12 million tons to 133.81 million. The 2020/21 Brazilian corn estimate was increased 3.17 million tons to 105.48 million.

The 2020/21 Brazilian soybean acreage is now estimated at 38.26 million hectares (94.5 million acres), which is up 70,000 hectares from last month (172,900 acres) and it represents an increase of 3.6% compared to the 2019/20 crop. The nationwide soybean yield is estimated at 3,497 kg/ha (52.1 bu/ac), which is down slightly from last month. The 2019/20 Brazilian soybean yield was 3,379 kg/ha (50.3 bu/ac) and the total production was 124.8 million tons.

Domestic Brazilian soybean prices set record highs in 2020 due to strong demand from China due to an ongoing trade dispute with the United States. Brazilian farmers forward contracted record amounts of their anticipated 2020/21 production even before the crop was planted last fall in order to lock in potential profits.

The 2020/21 Brazilian corn production was increased 3.17 million tons from previous months because February's report was the first time that Conab conducted a survey concerning the 2020/21 safrinha corn acreage in Brazil. Prior to this report, they carried forward last year's safrinha corn acreage.

Conab now estimates the 2020/21 safrinha corn acreage at 14.35 million hectares (35.4 million acres), which represented an increase of 4.4% compared to the 2019/20 crop. The safrinha corn production is estimated at 80.07 million tons, which is up 6.7% compared to last year.

Very strong domestic corn prices were an incentive for farmers to increase their intended safrinha corn acreage, but a delayed soybean harvest is also delaying the safrinha corn planting. As of late last week, Brazilian farmers had planted 3.4% of their intended safrinha corn acreage compared to 23% a year earlier.

The ideal planting window for safrinha corn will close about the third week of February. Even though much of the safrinha corn will be planted later than desired, Brazilian farmers are still expected to plant all their intended safrinha corn acreage due to the strong domestic corn prices.

The full-season corn production is estimated at 23.62 million tons and the third corn crop in northeastern Brazil is estimated at 1.77 million tons.

The safrinha corn crop now represents 75.9% of Brazil's total estimated corn production with the full-season corn crop representing 22.4% and the third crop representing 1.6%.