Brazil registered record corn exports in December, further highlighting its competitiveness in international markets.
Shipments hit 6.3 million metric tons in December, up 84% on the year before, according to Brazilian Development, Trade and Industry Ministry.
As a result, shipments in 2015 reached 28.9 mmt, some 40% higher than 2014 and easily topping previous record of 26 mmt shipped in 2013.
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Brazil harvested a bumper crop of 86 mmt in 2014-15. Meanwhile, a 32% devaluation in 2015 allowed the No. 2 exporter to be aggressive in placing its corn.
Marketing of Brazil's second crop has matured significantly over the last couple of years with forward contracts now common for the crop, known locally as safrinha. Indeed, around 30% of the 2015-16 crop has already been placed, consultants say.
The devaluation and strong export sales have supported local prices at a time when international futures are in the doldrums.
And the shipments continue.
Port line-ups indicate between 5 mmt and 6 mmt of corn will be exported in January, taking shipments for the 2015-16 commercial year (Feb-Jan) to around 34 mmt.
With the numbers showing a small positive margin, farmers are expected to plant more corn in the upcoming 2015-2016 second crop, from which the overwhelming majority of exports derive.
Analysts peg second-crop area growth at between 5% and 15%.
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