24 August 2023, Brazil: After three years of La Nina induced weather problems in southern Brazil, the current El Nino could bring relief to southern Brazil but cause problems in central Brazil. El Nino continues to strengthen and is expected to peak by the end of the year and remain in place until at least February.
The concern in Brazil is that El Nino could result in below normal rainfall and above normal temperatures during the September-October-November period in central Brazil and specifically in the states of Mato Grosso and Goias.
If verified, the hotter and dryer conditions could result in delayed soybean planting and increased evaporation, which could impact soybean development. Soybeans in Mato Grosso and Goias are normally planted in September and October, they flower in November, and fill pods in December and January. If the soybeans are planted later than normal, it may or may not impact potential yields. Late-planted soybeans can have normal yields if the weather cooperates during the rest of the growing season.
A worst-case scenario for soybeans in Mato Grosso and Goias would be if there is sufficient soil moisture to plant in September or October and then it turns dry in November and December, which is the critical reproductive period. The forecast for the next three months is calling for rainfall in Mato Grosso and Goias to be 40 to 50 mm below normal (1.6 to 2.0 inches).
Delayed soybean planting in central Brazil could delay the safrinha corn planting past the ideal planting window which closes about the third week of February. Late-planted safrinha corn is at greater risk of low yields.
While El Nino could result in dryer-than-normal conditions in central Brazil, it is expected to result in above normal rainfall over the next three months in southern Brazil. This would be welcomed relief after dry weather negatively impacted the last four corn crops and the last three soybean crops in southern Brazil.
Excess moisture in southern Brazil over the next three months could result in poor quality wheat, which will be harvested in September and October, and it could increase disease pressure on the soybean and corn crops.
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