Dry weather hurting Brazil’s soybean crop

Though recent rains have helped in some areas, hot, dry weather throughout January damaged Brazil’s 2014/15 soybean crop, said local consultancy AgRural, which plans to cut its forecast for the crop from 95 million tonnes in its February revision.

“Even though there were some rains during the week, the volumes were not enough to normalize the soil in parts of the northeast, center-west and southeast,” AgRural said in a report published late on Friday. “Losses can already be accounted for.”

Parts of top soy-growing state Mato Grosso have received less than half the usual volume of January rains, Somar meteorologists said in a bulletin on Monday, though rains have been above average in the far south.

Soy harvesting is 3% complete nationwide, AgRural said, in line with last year and the 5-year historical average.

Dry weather in the center-west state of Goias, which was most affected by hot dry weather, could result in a loss of 15% of the state’s crop, or 1.2 billion reais ($462 million) worth of damage, according to state farm association Faeg.

The Brazilian government’s crop supply agency Conab said this month that Goias would likely produce 9.9 million tonnes of soybeans this season, up 10% from a year earlier. The forecast did not take into account dry January weather.

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