Brazil to become world's top soy producer in 10 years

2017-07-17 22:15:33 GMT2017-07-18 06:15:33(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

RIO DE JANEIRO, July 17 (Xinhua) -- Brazil is expected to overtake the United States in the next 10 years to become the world's leading producer of soy, a new joint study by two global agencies said on Monday.

Soy production in Brazil is forecast to grow by 2.6 percent a year on average, the fastest rate of other major producers, thanks to the South American giant's extensive cropland, according to a newly released study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Neighboring Argentina is to see 2.1-percent growth in soy output, while the U.S. will see one-percent growth annually in the next 10 years.

Global production will grow at an overall 1.9-percent annually, much lower than the 4.9-percent average growth seen in the past decade.

By 2026, Brazil and the U.S. will jointly dominate global soy production, representing nearly 80 percent of world exports.

According to the latest projections from Brazil's National Supply Company (Conab), Brazil should harvest some 237.2 million tons of soy from 2017 to 2026, a record amount representing a 27.1-percent increase over the previous decade.

The president of the Brazilian association of soy producers, Marcos da Rosa, said he was concerned the projections will have a negative impact on prices.

"Forecasting a large harvest can lead markets to pre-set prices, which is bad for everyone," said Da Rosa.

"When we look at the price of commodities such as soy and corn, we see they have dropped, and it is a disincentive (to production). Since the last two soy harvests were good, we sense supply is greater than demand ... and the prices paid are much lower compared to the last harvest," added Da Rosa.

Meanwhile, the deputy director of technology transfer at the state-run Brazilian Agricultural Research Company (Embrapa), Alexander Cattelan, said the country's potential output is even higher than projected by the OECD and FAO, but to really benefit from soy, what's needed is added value.

"We have to add value, turn it into meat, chicken, pork or beef by using it as cattlefeed. Another alternative is biodiesel," said Cattelan.

The study looks at grain production in general, forecasting an 11-percent increase in wheat by 2026, 14-percent increase in corn, 10-percent increase in coarse grains and 13-percent increase in rice.

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