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AGRICULTURE WEATHER WATCH: No respite for Argentinian wheat despite rain forecast

Highlights

Rain in the US to slow corn, bean harvests

Brazil 's first corn crop to receive favorable rains

Australian wheat crop to benefit from lower chance of showers

Argentina is forecast to receive rain in key wheat-growing regions over Sept. 25-Oct. 1, but severe dryness and frost have already hammered the prospects of the current crop, potentially reducing availability to regular buyers in Africa and Asia.

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No heavy rainfall was forecast in the current Sept. 18-24 week, although showers of varying intensity were forecast in some regions, Argentina's meteorological department said in an update.

Rains in the current week will improve moisture slightly for late wheat growth in Argentina, but much more was needed to end dryness, weather agency Maxar said.

The wheat crop in Argentina has already been severely impacted by dry weather in recent months and without more rain, the crop will be one of the worst in recent years. This could not come at more challenging time for global grain markets, which are already grappling with squeezed wheat supply due to the Russia-Ukraine war.

The US

** 55% of soybean acreage was currently rated in good to excellent condition, three points below the same time a year earlier, according to the US Department of Agriculture.

** 52% of the nation's corn acreage was rated in good to excellent condition, 7 points below the same time last year.

** The weather forecast for the next 16-30 days remains slightly warmer than average across the central plains areas for corn and soybeans, while showers in the south-central Midwest are likely to slow down corn and soybean harvesting, according to Maxar.

** Platts-assessed FOB PNW corn rose 5.5% month on month to $350.30/mt Sept. 21, a 7-week high.

** 94% of the nation's spring wheat had been harvested as of Sept. 18, 6 points below the previous year, according to the USDA.

Australia

** Most of the wheat-growing regions of Western Australia and New South Wales have a lower than usual chance of showers over the next two weeks to Oct. 7, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

** The dry weather was expected to be good for the standing wheat crop, as it will help in drying the crop after the regions received heavy showers over the past few weeks.

** The likely lower-than-average chance of showers in Western Australia was increasing hopes of slightly higher-than-expected output of milling wheat output.

** Platts-assessed Australian Premium White or APW wheat rose $5/mt month on month to $370/mt Sept. 21.

The EU

** Most parts of France, especially the northern and western regions, were forecast to receive heavy showers over the next two weeks to Oct. 3, Mateo France said.

** The intensity of the rainfall may increase further over Sept. 25-Oct. 1, Mateo France added.

** The expected rainfall may provide some respite to the wheat and corn crops in France, a source at a key producer said.

** In Germany, light showers are forecast over western and southern parts until Sept. 27, according to the German weather service Deutscher Wetterdienst.

** Limited rainfall may improve wheat crop conditions in some areas, industry sources said.

** The EU's Monitoring Agricultural Resources agency has forecast wheat yields in marketing year 2022-23 (July-June) falling 1.4% year on year to 5.54 mt/hectare. For the EU's corn crop, yields for MY 2022-23 were seen 7.8% lower on year at 7.25 mt/hectare.

** Platts-assessed EU wheat with 11% protein content CPT Rouen rose 7.8% month on month to $345.25/mt Sept. 21.

Brazil, Argentina

** Brazil's first corn crop planting was expected to experience favorable weather conditions Sept. 20-26 as the forecast points to more rain in the southern regions where the sowing is concentrated.

** Widespread rains in the week to Sept. 23 will improve moisture supplies, which will favor corn germination but slow down wheat drying, Maxar said.

** Planting of the 2022-23 first corn crop had reached 22.1% of the forecast area in Center-South Brazil as of Sept. 15, private consultancy AgRural said in a note.

** Argentina's early corn crop planting has been delayed by drought, with barely 1% of the forecast area sown as of Sept. 15, compared with 25% a year ago, BCR said in a report.

** Planting of the early corn crop in Argentina typically begins in September, but the lack of sufficient rainfall has forced farmers to delay planting.

** Platts-assessed Brazil FOB corn rose 1% month on month to $293.49/mt Sept. 22, while Argentina FOB corn rose 1.4% over the same period to $278.94/mt.

This article is part of a global weather watch series from S&P Global Commodity Insights, which is published fortnightly.