Brazilian soybean planting moved forward 9 percentage points last week and would have progressed more quickly were it not for the ample rains that fell across key producing regions, according to AgRural, a local farm consultancy.
Farmers didn’t mind the inconvenience, though, as the showers corrected soil moisture deficits that had been growing in the center-west and southern regions.
Soybean planting was 85% complete as of Friday, slightly behind the 89% planted at the same point last year, AgRural said.
The rain was welcomed in Parana, where parts of the northern and central regions had received little in the way of precipitation for weeks. Planting in the No. 2 soy state reached 91% complete.
In Rio Grande do Sul, the No. 3 soybean-producing state, planting progressed from 60% to 74% complete amid unexpected showers.
In Mato Grosso, the No. 1 state, planting is virtually complete at 98% and heavy rain nourished the crop over the past week.
In the center-north of the state, the first crops have reached the pod-filling stage and are looking in fair condition. The first cases of Asian rust have been reported in the region.
In Mato Grosso do Sul, rains were also generous, but neighboring Goias got no more than showers.
In the Northeast, with the exception of Bahia, it didn’t rain much last week. In Piaui, the crop is just 20% planted against 44% at the same stage last year.
AgRural issued an updated crop forecast, which was little changed from its previous number. It pegs 2014-15 soybean output at 94.9 million metric tons, up 10.2% on last year and at the top end of private forecasts.
According to Somar Meteorologia, this week will see rain fall on a strip across eastern parts of the grain belt and most of Mato Grosso but will be weak in the key southern growing regions.