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Brazil's 'ag frontier'

Updated: 02/15/2011 @ 8:52am

URUCUI, Piaui (Agriculture.com)—It’s the new ‘New Agricultural Frontier’ of Brazil’s Cerrado. In the 1980’s, the state of Mato Grosso was labeled the area of South America with the greatest potential for millions of acres of soybean production. That title has been transferred.

Though farmers have produced crops here for ten years, electricity just showed up last year in this town located on a northeastern Brazil plateau, thousands of feet above sea level. Farmers journeyed here from the southern states of Rio Grande do Sul and Parana. The land-seeking farmers were led here by a cooperative to clear Cerrado land that was priced, at the time, at $66 per acre. After two years, the coop pulled out but the farm-families stayed. Today, developed land sales for $1,890,00 per acre.

Uruci, is located in the Nova Santa Rosa district, one of five on the plateau. Nova Santa Rosa (with Nova meaning ‘new’) was named after most of the farmers’ hometown of Santa Rosa, Parana.

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