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Agricultural production

2021 about to surpass last year´s record, hitting 260.5 million tonnes

Section: Economic Statistics | Cristiane Crelier

January 13, 2021 09h00 AM | Last Updated: January 13, 2021 03h40 PM

Estimates for soybeans in 2021 point out an increase of 6.8% over last year - Photo: Jaelson Lucas/AEN-PR

The national harvest of grains should hit another record in 2021, the third in a row, adding up to 260.5 million tonnes, an increase of 2.5% over last year. On the other hand, the final estimate for the output of cereals, legumes and oilseeds added up to 254.1 million tonnes in 2020, confirming the expected record. This information comes from the Systematic Survey of Agricultural Production - LSPA, released today (13) by the IBGE.

Soybeans remain rising, as initial estimates (129.7 million tonnes) point out an increase of output of 6.8% (8.2 million tonnes) in relation to what was harvested in 2020 and of 1.5% in relation to the second forecast (released in December). In contrast, corn expects a decline of 1.5% (less 1.5 million tonnes) over 2020, though it increased 1.6% against the previous estimate.

"Due to the more rewarding prices of soybeans in relation to corn, the producers are encouraged to improve the cropping areas of that oilseed, which should represent more than 57% of the total area used to plant grains in Brazil in 2021," assesses Carlos Barradas, an IBGE agricultural analyst.

After three years of records, the production of upland cotton should hit 6.1 million tonnes, a reduction of 0.6% in relation to the second forecast and of 14.0% in relation to what was harvested in 2020.

"The harvest of upland cotton had been growing to meet the international demand. Yet, cotton is mainly used to manufacture clothes. With the Covid-19 pandemic, this demand dropped, influencing the planting decision in the next harvest," explains Barradas.

For rice, the third estimate (11 million tonnes) points to an increase of 0.8% in the output over the previous forecast, though it also declines 0.8% over 2020.

"In the last months, rice prices hit high levels, leading the government to set to zero the import taxes to control them. Rio Grande do Sul accounts for nearly 70% of the national production, their crops are irrigated, they are associated with high technology and they have an appropriate management, managing to reach a high productivity," highlights Carlos Barradas.

2020 harvest surpassed the 2019 record by 5.2%

The record harvest of grains added up to 254.1 million tonnes in 2020 and it was also a record, according to the last estimate of the year, 5.2% (12.6 million tonnes) above the 2019 harvest (241.5 million tonnes). It increased 0.8% (2.0 million tonnes) in relation to what was estimated in the previous month.

Altogether, rice, corn and soybeans added up to 92.7% of the production estimate and 87.1% of the harvested area. In relation to 2019, soybeans registered a rise of production of 7.1%, rice, 7.7%, corn, 2.7% (2.3% in the first crop and 2.8% in the second one) and upland cotton, 2.8%. Concerning the area used for cropping, it increased 4.3% for corn (2.5% for the first crop and 5.0% for the second one); 3.5% for soybeans and 0.5% for upland cotton. On the other hand, the area for rice declined (1.2%).

Among the Major Regions, the volume of production of cereals, legumes and oilseeds presented the following distribution: Central-West, 121.7 million tonnes (47.9%); South, 73.0 million tonnes (28.8%); Southeast, 25.7 million tonnes (10.1%); Northeast, 22.6 million tonnes (8.9%) and North, 11.0 million tonnes (4.3%). Mato Grosso leads the national production of grains with a share of 28.7%, followed by Paraná (15.9%), Rio Grande do Sul (10.3%), Goiás (10.3%), Mato Grosso do Sul (8.7%) and Minas Gerais (6.2%). These states together accounted for 80.1% of the national overall.

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