August 18, 2008

 

Argentina wheat planting near end, conditions better
   

 

Argentina's 2007-08 wheat planting is reaching its end with crop conditions improving from an early drought that complicated planting in many areas, the Agriculture Secretariat said Friday (August 15).

 

Argentina farmers have planted 95 percent of the 4.7 million hectares seen going to wheat this season, down two percent from this date last year, the secretariat said.

 

The USDA lowered its forecast for 2008-09 wheat production by 1 million tonnes to 13.5 million tonnes.

 

The dry weather during key planting periods and a series of farm strikes from March through June are blamed for the reduced planting area.

 

Meanwhile, about 99 percent of the 2007-08 corn crop had been harvested as of August 14, one percent behind of the pace at this time last year, the secretariat said. Output is forecast at 20.4 million tonnes.

 

New crop corn planting has not started yet, but area is expected to be down as farmers plant more soy.

 

This week, the USDA lowered its forecast for Argentina's 2008-09 corn production by 1.5 million tonnes to 22 million tonnes.

 

The USDA also raised its forecast for 2008-09 soy production by 1.5 million tonnes to a record 49.5 million tonnes.
   

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