September 9, 2003



Brazil's 2003-04 Soybean Output Seen at 58.1Million Tons


Brazil's 2003-04 soybean production is seen totaling 58.1 million tons, a 10.7% increase on the 52.48 million tons produced in 2002-03, according to the local agricultural consultancy Celeres.


According to Celeres, the increase is a result of an expected larger planted area following higher soy prices this season. Planted soy area is seen rising to 20,507 hectares this season, up from 18,614 hectares last season.


Meanwhile, productivity is seen steady at 2,834 kilograms per hectare, practically unchanged from 2,819 kg/hectare last season. Celeres' previous estimate for the 2003-04 was slightly lower at 57.38 million tons.


Mato Grosso is expected to maintain its leadership position in 2003-04 with production of 16.5 million tons, up from 13.43 million tons last season. Parana state, in second place, is expected to produce 11.7 million tons next season, compared to 10.96 million tons in 2002-03.


Meanwhile, some 28% of Brazil's projected record 2003-04 crop has been sold with around three weeks before planting begins. This is the same level as this time last year.


Forward sales are well above the five-year average of 18% for this time of year.


As expected, sales are quickest in the center-west state of Mato Grosso, where some 45% of the crop had been committed through various types of deals, including swaps for seed, fertilizers and herbicides. That's the same level as this time last year.


In the center-west as a whole, sales have been down on the year at 41% of the crop versus 44% last year.


Old-crop sales stand at 91% of the crop compared with 90% the year before, said the report. Brazil is the world's second-largest soybean producer.
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