Tereza Cristina Dias, Brazil’s Agriculture Minister, confirmed late last week that the country’s government expects their farmers will harvest bumper crops of soybeans and corn. Those expectations come despite significant planting and harvest delays. A drought late last year delayed planting soybeans in Brazil, and excess rainfall disrupted harvesting in January.
Slower deliveries to Brazilian grain trading companies have affected the country’s ability to export commodities around the world. Speaking at an event marketing the beginning of harvest, Dias reaffirmed that farmers would reap up to 133 million tons of soybeans and potentially more than 103 million tons of corn this year. “Our goal is to produce more each year and break records,” Dias says. Reuters says Brazil’s 2020-2021 soybean harvest only reached 1.9 percent of the cultivated area through January 28, the slowest pace for this time of year in the past ten growing seasons.
Brazil’s second-corn crop, which makes up the bulk of its total corn production, is planted after soybean harvest wraps up. With those delays, the second corn crop may finish outside the ideal window, and that might put an upside limit on the yield.