March 2, 2004



Argentina's 2003-04 Corn 8.7% Collected

Argentina's farmers had collected 8.7% of the 2003-04 corn harvest by Saturday, the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange reported over the weekend.
The pace of production is up from 4.8% a year ago at this time.
Thus far, farmers have harvested around 1,194,964 metric tons. Collectable area stands at 2.219 million hectares.
The average yield so far is 6.17 tons per hectare, which is down from 7.12 tons a year ago at this time.
About half of the crop collected thus far comes from center-south Santa Fe, northern Buenos Aires, southeastern Entre Rios and eastern Cordoba, the exchange said. Yields in these areas averaged around 7.5 tons/hectare.
Rain is "urgently" needed in a number of "marginal areas" outside this main productive region, the exchange said.
Based on the overall average yield so far, the exchange has estimated total production of 12.8 million tons.
Meanwhile, Argentina's farmers have made scant progress on the collection of the 2003-04 sunseed crop.
As of Saturday, farmers had collected 22.2% of the crop, up just a bit from 21% last week and down from 25% a year ago.
Planted area totals 1.95 million hectares, though only 1.946 hectares will actually be harvested, the exchange said, citing crop damage.
The average yield so far this year is 2.0 tons/hectare, compared with just 1.74 tons a year ago.
With adequate rainfall in the weeks ahead, total production will likely amount to between 3.3 million and 3.4 million tons, the exchange said.
This would be a decline of around 6% from a year ago.

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