September 30, 2003



Argentina's 2003-04 Corn Crop Planted


As of Sept. 26, Argentina's farmers had planted 17% of the 2003-04 corn crop, the Agriculture Secretariat reported Monday.


The Secretariat estimates the size of the 2003-04 corn area at 3.15 million hectares, compared with 3.092 million hectares the previous year.


The pace of planting is up from 7% a week ago, but down four percentage points from a year ago at this time. As of Sept. 26, some 528,491 hectares had been planted.


The Secretariat's numbers differed a bit from those provided by the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange, whose estimates include planting as of Sept. 27. The exchange said planted area stands at 2.465 million hectares, though this does not include corn used for feed.


Some 16% of this, or 393,940 hectares, had been planted by Sept. 27, according to the exchange.


Argentina produced 15 million metric tons of corn in 2002-03, according to the Secretariat. It will produce another 15 million in 2003-04, officials have said. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has forecast 2003-04 Argentine corn production at 16 million tons.




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