December 10, 2008

Brazil's 2008 grain crop harvest may reach 145 million tonnes


Brazil will have a grain crop harvest of 145.7 million tonnes in 2008, up 9.4 percent from the 133.1 million tonnes yielded in 2007, according to projections released by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).


The cultivated area in the country is expected to increase by 4.1 percent in 2008, reaching 47.2 million hectares, the IBGE said.


The crops which occupied the largest number of the cultivated areas in 2008 were soy, with 21.3 million hectares, followed by corn with 14.4 million hectares and rice with 2.9 million hectares.


The three grains account for 89.7 percent of Brazil's total grain output.


The IBGE also projected the grain output in 2009 to drop 3.8 percent from 2008 while the cultivated area is expected to increase by 0.9 percent, reaching 47.6 million hectares.


Brazil's Agriculture Minister Reinhold Stephanes said a decrease in the grain output next year is expected due to the international financial crisis. The ministry expects the harvest to fall in all of Brazil's regions except for the south.


He said the government may take measures to assure credit for the sector and public banks may adjust interest rates to bolster agricultural activities.

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