February 3, 2004



Argentina's 2003-04 Corn 99.8% Planted


As of Saturday, farmers had planted 99.8% of the 2003-04 corn crop, up from 99.6% a week ago, the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange said. The exchange did not say how the pace of planting compares with that of the previous year.


The exchange has estimated planted area of commercially tradable corn at 2.23 million hectares. This puts area down a bit from 2.4 million hectares a year earlier.


As of Saturday, farmers had planted 2,226,500 million hectares of 2003-04 corn, according to the exchange.


Total planted area, including corn used for feed, will not exceed 2.75 million hectares, the exchange has said in previous reports. This would be a decline of about 10% from the previous year, according to exchange data.


In northern parts of Buenos Aires province, center-south Santa Fe and in almost all of Entre Rios, the crop is developing well, the exchange said.


In these areas, the average yield last week hovered around 7.5 metric tons per hectare. Elsewhere, yields are down by as much as 15% from a year ago, but national output is expected to total between 12.6 and 12.8 million tons, the exchange said.


Argentina produced 15.25 million tons of corn last year, according to the exchange.


The Agriculture Secretariat expects 2003-04 seeded area to total 2.796 million hectares and has forecast production at between 12 million and 12.5 million tons.


In 2002-03, Argentina planted 3.092 million hectares of corn and produced 15 million tons of the grain, Secretariat data show.


The U.S. Department has estimated 2003-04 Argentine corn production at 12.5 million tons.




Meanwhile, the exchange said farmers had planted 99.7% of the 2003-04 soybean crop by Saturday.


This is up from 99.5% a week ago. The exchange did not say how the pace of planting compares with that of the previous year.


Area is seen at a record 13.95 million hectares.


The exchange said the crop is developing poorly in northern provinces such as Chaco, Santiago del Estero and Tucuman, where yields are low because of a drought in the region. However, substantial precipitation over the weekend improved the condition of the crop in the main soybean producing region, which includes Buenos Aires, Cordoba and Santa Fe, the exchange said.


In December, the exchange estimated that 2003-04 soybean production will jump 1.1 million tons from a year ago, putting output at about 36.4 million tons. Last year, farmers planted 12.8 million hectares and produced 35.27 million tons of soybeans, according to the exchange.


The USDA estimates 2003-04 soybean production at 36.5 million tons.


Some 13,903,000 hectares had been planted by Saturday.

Video >

Follow Us