Brazil’s soy industry raises export projection

SAO PAULO, Brazil (Reuters) — Brazil is expected to export 68 million tonnes of soybeans in 2018, three million tonnes more than a December projection, as a larger crop boosts shipments abroad, soybean industry group Abiove said March 1.

Abiove also raised its view for Brazil’s 2017-18 soybean production to 114.7 million tonnes, above last season’s record seen by the group at 113.8 million tonnes and well above its latest projection for the current season of 109.5 million tonnes released in December.

The record production, in a year when Argentina is suffering with a harsh drought that is reducing its soybean crop, is expected to consolidate Brazil’s position as the world’s largest soybean exporter.

But despite the problems in Argentina, which will impact the country’s position as a large global exporter of soy byproducts such as soymeal and soyoil, Abiove did not raised its projections for soy processing in Brazil.

The body, which represents local units of all the big soy crushers such as ADM, Bunge, Cargill, Cofco and Louis Dreyfus, also increased estimates for soymeal and soyoil production and exports, indicating that other global suppliers are likely to fill the gap left by Argentina.

Abiove sees Brazil’s soy processing at 43 million tonnes, unchanged from December projections. The country crushed 41.8 million tonnes in 2017.

Soymeal production in 2018 is forecast at 32.7 million tonnes, versus 31.4 million tonnes in 2017, with exports seen at 16.2 million tonnes.

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