Brazilian farmers will harvest just under 94 million tons of corn this season. A Reuters poll of ten harvest forecasters indicates a fall of 8.5 percent from the last forecast due to a severe drought.
Second-crop corn failure will lead to higher imports and lower exports of the crop. The forecasters say Brazil, home to some of the world’s largest meat processors, will need to keep the grain to make it livestock feed.
One agribusiness consultant cut her corn export forecast to 22.5 million tons, down from a previous prediction of 32 million tons, and told Reuters she estimates Brazilian corn import needs may reach four million tons. If the dry weather persists, corn yields may fall even further in some of the key corn-producing states in Brazil.
In April, a Reuters poll of 11 forecasters predicted a record corn crop of 107 million tons, but poor weather during the development stage damaged that prospect. Brazil’s second-corn crop, which gets planted after the country’s soybeans get harvested at the end of Brazil’s summertime, has been hit hardest by a lack of rainfall.