September 30, 2009

Rain continues to impair wheat crop in Brazil's Parana

Rain and disease are continuing to impair the wheat crop in Parana, Brazil's No. 1 producer state, according Parana's agricultural secretariat, or Seab.


"Parana's wheat production could fall even lower if the rain continues to slow the harvest," technical specialist Otmar Hubner told Dow Jones Newswires Tuesday.


Seab said recently Parana state, which accounts for over half of Brazil's area planted with wheat, should produce a crop of 2.8 million tonnes in 2008-09.


This is below Seab's previous estimate of 3.17 million tonnes for 2008-09 and 3.2 million tonnes in 2007-08.


Hubner said Parana's wheat harvest has been slowed by the unseasonal rain. The wheat harvest is 45 percent compete compared to 70 percent at the same time last year, he said.


As a result of the damp weather, Parana's wheat crop has seen a rise in crop diseases, such as fungus, as well as a decline in quality, he said. "The situation is very worrying," he added.


Chicago Board of Trade December wheat closed down 8 1/4 cents at US$4.47 1/2 a bushel.


National Commodities Supply Corp., or Conab, recently estimated Brazil's 2008-09 wheat crop at 6 million tonnes compared to 4 million tonnes in 2007-08.  

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