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June 11, 2021

Conab Lowers Brazil Corn Estimate 10 Million Tons to 96.3 Million

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

In their latest assessment of the 2020/21 Brazilian corn crop, Conab lowered the corn production 10.1 million tons from 106.4 to 96.3 million tons. Almost all the reduction came from the safrinha corn crop which was lowered 9.8 million tons from 79.7 to 69.9 million tons.

Much of the safrinha corn has been under extreme moisture stress due to one of the driest periods in central Brazil in over 90 years. The safrinha corn has encountered numerous problems this growing season including being planted much later than normal due to a delayed soybean harvest, extremely dry weather since being planted, and even frost damage to corn in western Parana.

The safrinha corn acreage remained unchanged this month at 14.9 million hectares (36.8 million acres), which is up 8.4% compared to a year earlier. The big change in this month's estimate was the lower yields for the safrinha corn. Conab is now estimating the safrinha corn yield at 4,693 kg/ha (74.6 bu/ac), which is down 12% from May's estimate of 5,331 kg/ha (84.7 bu/ac). If verified, the safrinha corn yield would be down 6.8% compared to last year.

Conab also indicated that the safrinha production may move lower in subsequent reports due to continued dryness in south-central Brazil and the potential for additional frosts before the corn is mature.

The production estimate for the full-season corn was left essentially unchanged at 24.7 million tons. The production estimate for Brazil's third corn crop was lowered 0.2 million tons to 1.7 million.

Conab is estimating Brazil's domestic corn consumption at 72.9 million tons, which is up 6.2% compared to last year. Brazil is expected to import 2.3 million tons of corn, up from the 1 million ton estimate in May. Corn imports are up 60% during the first semester of 2020 and they are expected to remain elevated during the second semester as well.

Brazil's 2020/21 corn exports were revised down to 29.5 million tons compared to 35 million tons in May. Brazil's corn carryover for 2020/21 was lowered 27% to 7.6 million tons compared to 10.9 million tons in May. If verified, that would equate to a little more one month of domestic consumption.