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Argentinian soybean production forecast up 48% on year on good weather, crop yield

New Delhi — Argentinian soybean production in the 2018-19 crop year was set to rise 48% year on year to 56 million mt due to favorable weather and a subsequent high crop yield, according to the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange.

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Argentina is the world's third-largest soybean grower and the top soybean meal and oil exporter. The agency's forecast was up 2% from its previous forecast in April.

The soybean harvest in Argentina for the 2018-19 crop year was 76.7% complete on Wednesday, which was 6.1 percentage points above the five-year average, the agency said.

Early planted soybeans were 85.7% harvested, while 56.1% of the second soybean crop was harvested by Wednesday, the data showed.

In Argentina, early planting of soybean takes place in September, while second crop beans are planted immediately after the wheat crop is harvested in November.

If China's import tariffs continue to hit US soybean sales, limited Brazilian supplies this fall may then encourage more Argentinian beans exports, the US Department of Agriculture said in a recent report.

Last July, China put an additional 25% import tariff on US-origin soybeans in response to tariffs the US had placed on Chinese goods. As a result, US soybean exports to China from September to February fell 85% year on year to 4 million mt, as Chinese buyers looked to Argentina and Brazil.

On May 5, US President Donald Trump threatened to escalate the trade tension with fresh tariffs on Chinese goods, amid slow progress in trade talks.

Due to the recent escalation of the China-US trade dispute, Argentinian soybean export estimates could rise further as the Chinese start buying more soybeans from South America, sources said.

-- Asim Anand, aanand@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Daniel Lalor, newsdesk@spglobal.com