Drought to shave $600 m from Uruguay on lower corn, soy crop


Drought in Uruguay could cost the country's coffers $600 million in lost revenue as both the corn and soybean crop suffers, general manager of consultancy firm Unicampo Uruguay, Esteban Hoffman, told Agricensus.

The region has suffered as the La Nina phenomena has seen a lack of rainfall turn into a prolonged drought, damaging crops across Argentina, southern Brazil and Uruguay, where corn and soybean production have been affected.

Uruguay’s 2017/18 corn production is set to fall to 200,000-220,000 mt, with yields at 3.5 mt/ha and a planted area of 60,000 ha.

The impact for soybeans could be even greater.

“Given the impact of the drought in Uruguay, we are forecasting the soybean crop will have an estimated yield of 1.5 or 1.6 mt/ha during the current crop season, which will represent a decrease of 50% versus the 2016/17 cycle,” Hoffman said, taking total soybean production to 1.65 million mt, from a planted area of 1.06 million ha.

Only 7% of soybeans were in a good condition or better, according to Unicampo Uruguay’s latest report, although only 1% of the planted area was considered lost.

In the Centre-South region, 47% of the planted area was said to be in a very poor condition as of mid-March, while the Centre-North region had 35% of the planted area in a similar condition.


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