South America Calling

Brazil's Soybean, Corn Shipments Strong In August

By Alastair Stewart , South America Correspondent

Brazil managed to ally strong soybean exports with rising corn shipments in August, indicating that port operations are running smoothly, government data revealed Monday.

Despite being seven months into the Brazilian soybean-marketing season, the world's No. 2 producer shipped 5.4 million metric tons last month, only slightly lower than the 5.7 mmt sent in July and well above the 2.4 mmt sent in August of 2012.

The recent export performance prompted the Brazilian Soy Industry Association (ABIOVE) to raise its 2013-14 soybean export forecast to 40.5 mmt and lower its processing figure to 35.9 mmt earlier in the day.

Corn exports were also strong in the first full month of second-crop shipment season, totaling 3.1 mmt, which is higher than the 2.8 mmt registered last year when Brazil shipped a record 22 mmt.

A recovery in U.S. corn output this year will likely preclude a repeat of last year's performance.

According to Safras e Mercado, a local grain consultancy, ships are named to export somewhere in the region of 2.5 mmt in September and total shipments will be around 18.8 mmt in the 2013-14 season.

With a record second crop of 46 mmt to place, Brazil needs to export to take some of the pressure off local prices.

Brazilian ports are badly overstretched and are being forced to operate at full capacity nearly year round to cope with grain shipments.

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