Argentine Crops Need Rain Soon

Argentina's crops need rain soon to curb corn losses and ensure decent soybean yields, the Agriculture Secretariat said on Jan. 6 in its weekly crop progress report.

Corn fields in much of the main growing region – led by Cordoba, Buenos Aires and Santa Fe provinces – have entered the pollination stage, when moisture is most needed, the government said.

The crop in east-central Cordoba "has been affected by high temperatures and scant moisture in the first 40 cm. of soil, which means that significant rains will be needed in the coming days," the report said.

The same is true in north-central and southwest Buenos Aires province. "Although there has been some precipitation, it was not enough to replenish soil moisture," the report said.

The Agriculture Secretariat reported that soybean plants are starting to suffer hot, dry conditions in east-central Cordoba, southern Santa Fe, much of Buenos Aires province and Entre Rios, the top four soy-producing provinces.

In some areas, farmers will not be able to seed as much land with soybeans as the government had forecast, although the bulk of the crop has already been planted.

Farmers had planted 90 percent of the 15.2 million hectares forecast, up just one percentage point from a week earlier and trailing last year's pace by three points, the government said.

Editors note: Richard Brock, The Corn and Soybean Digest's Marketing Editor, is president of Brock Associates, a farm market advisory firm, and publisher of The Brock Report.

To see more market perspectives, visit Brock's Web site at www.brockreport.com.