Domestic soybean prices kept almost stable during the first fortnight of March, despite harvesting progress. In Mato Grosso state, the main Brazilian soybean producer, around 50 percent of the total area was already harvested. In Paraná state, other important producer, activities have reached 35 percent. The peak of season is expected for this fortnight.
The CEPEA/ESALQ Index (Paraná state) upped slight 0.25 percent in Real between February 27th and March 16th, closing at 44.81 reals or 19.68 dollars per bag of 60 kilos. For the product delivered at Paranaguá port, the ESALQ/BM&F Index averaged 47.18 reals or 20.72 dollars per bag, an increase of 1.31 percent in Real.
The latest Conab (Brazilian government) report, published on Mar 9th, changed a little the area, productivity and production forecasts. The total area from 2008/09 crop is projected at 21.56 million hectares, increase 1.1 percent compared to the previous crop (2007/08). The productivity, in turn, should reduce 5 percent, to 2,674 kilos per hectare. The main reason for that was the strong drought in Paraná and Mato Grosso do Sul states. Therefore, the production should total 57.63 million tons, volume 4 percent inferior. USDA, in turn, forecasts 57 million of Brazilian soybean.
According to Secex (Foreign Trade Secretariat), Brazilian soybean exports enlarged 12.2 percent from January to February, totaling 689.5 thousand tons. Compared to the same period 2008, exports were 62.2 percent higher. (Cepea - Brazil)