Brazil soy planting advances amid rain, 5.6 mln ha sown in a week, AgRural says

SAO PAULO, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Brazilian soybean farmers have planted 23% of the estimated 2020/2021 crop through Thursday of last week, as rains permitted sowing to progress after a drought that delayed work earlier in the season, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday.

According to calculations by AgRural, about 5.6 million hectares (13.8 million acres) were planted with Brazil's most prized agricultural export in the space of seven days.

In the prior week, a mere 8% of the estimated area had been planted, AgRural data showed.

Despite initial delays, yields and overall output are expected to be good, with Brazilian farmers looking to collect around 132 million tonnes of soybeans this season, a record if that estimate is confirmed.

Chicago soybean contracts rose for a sixth consecutive session on Monday, climbing to their highest in more than four years on the back of strong Chinese demand and dryness in parts of top producer Brazil.

The most advanced state in terms of planting is southern Paraná, with 51% of its area already sown.

"But the state needs widespread rainfall in the coming days to ensure good conditions for germination and initial crop development," AgRural said.

Planting also advanced in Center West states of Mato Grosso, Goiás and Mato Grosso do Sul. But the three states are still behind last year, especially Mato Grosso, Brazil's biggest grower.

"With rains on the radar," AgRural said, "planting will gather pace in the Center West over the coming days." (Reporting by Ana Mano and Roberto Samora; editing by David Evans)

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