August 31, 2012
Due to a smaller harvest and stronger competition from Chinese crushers, Argentina's soy crushing activity dropped 8.4% in July from the same month last year.
Soy production in the world's top soyoil and meal supplier sank in the 2011-12 season due to a drought that parched the Pampas grains belt in December and January, just as beans were entering their key flowering stage.
Crushers processed 2.96 million tonnes of soy in July, producing 555,258 tonnes of soyoil and 2.3 million tonnes of soymeal -- down 9.7% and 9.5% on-year, respectively.
The government said the 2011-12 soy crop totalled 40.1 million tonnes, way down from early-season expectations for a harvest of 52 million-53 million tonnes and 18% less than during the previous season.
The idle capacity of crushing plants in the South American country rose to 35% in July compared with a 2011 average of 25%, according to Argentine crushing chamber CIARA, which forecasts a 32% average for 2012.