Wheat Crop Estimate Cut in Argentina

Exports expected to fall substantially.

Published on: Dec 18, 2008

The Argentine government has dropped its forecast for the 2008-09 wheat crop by more than a million tons from last month's estimate, setting the new number at 9 million tons. If those numbers hold up, that will drastically impact Argentina's exports.

USDA says Argentina exported more than 10 million tons of wheat from last year's crop and peg exports from this crop at 5.8 million tons, about three times the 2 million tons local figures suggest.

With 53% of wheat harvest the Argentine Ag Secretariat says yields are extremely low. Drought and decreased planted area are being blamed for the reduced crop from the 16 million tons harvested last year. The lower figures for exports can be attributed to increased domestic demand.

Due to the reduction in the amount of wheat Argentina is harvesting, their largest customer Brazil will likely have to import grain from North American sources this year.