of a reduction in prospective plantings in Buenos Aires and La Pampa, total
planted areas would increase about half a million hectares (or around 1.5%)
nationwide in the 2017/18 campaign. Based on trend yield estimates for main
crops and historical averages for marginal ones, total grains production is
expected to come in around 127 million tons, 1% above last season and a new
Members of the agribusiness industry have kept their optimist ahead of
the 2017/18 season, with rising planting intentions for some of the
main crops, including wheat and corn. However, water excesses keep
affecting a great part of the national agriculture area, limiting the
rise in projected area.
At a national level, it is projected that the planted area will rise to
37.2 million hectares in 2017/18 season; 1.15% more than previous
cycle. Among different crops, corn and sunflower stand out, with 7% and
5% year-over-year increases respectively. Wheat plantings, on the other
hand, only would rise 2%, given excess moisture in fields preventing
On the contrary, soybean area is expected to fall for a second year in
a row, with an additional 2% drop ahead of the 2017/18 marketing year.
Behind this fall are an increase in ending stocks in the previous
marketing year and strong competition from corn, with improved profit
margins since December 2015. What’s more, the first bids for new
soybean have not been very attractive to sellers, and are not really
expected to pick up given tight profit margins for both exporters and
the processing industry.
Barley area would decrease 6% (as a counterpart to the risen in wheat
area) while sorghum area would fall 2% (because of the interest in
Yields for main crops were assumed trend according to more investment
in tech application and crop protection, while marginal crops where
projected to show yields equal to their average for the past 5 years.
As a result, total production for the 2017/18 MY is projected to be 127
million tons, the greatest volume in Argentinian history. This
production is 1% above the last season figure and 15% over the output
obtained just two years ago.
Breaking down the previous estimates, we can mention that soybean
production is expected to fall to 55 million tons, its lowest level in
4 years. However, given that stocks from the previous campaign are
expected to end around 15 million tons, total domestic supply is still
projected to stand at record levels.
On the other hand, corn would increase its share of total grain
production, rising to 32%, up 6 percentage points in only two years.
Wheat would also see its share increase to 13% from 9% two years ago.
The present estimates are just preliminary projections based on data. On
September 13, the Strategic Guide for Agribusiness (GEA) will present its
first survey-based corn area estimates. There is still a long way to go
before we can pin down precise numbers on the 2017/18 marketing year, given
uncertainty about weather conditions.