From soy to coffee, Brazil ag commodities rise to record prices

By Roberto Samora SAO PAULO, Sept 1 (Reuters) - The price of Brazilian agricultural commodities such as soybeans, corn, coffee and rice has reached record levels as strong demand and a weak currency drove prices higher in local currency, according to data from Cepea, a research center linked to the São Paulo University. Brazil's soybean quotes are up by more than 50% in nominal terms compared to the same period last year, as China continues to buy ever larger amounts of the oilseeds from Brazil, Cepea data showed. On Monday, Brazil's main export product hit 137.76 reais per 60 kg bag, less than 2 reais below an all-time high of 139 reais in 2012. In the case of coffee, the rise in Arabica prices was more than 45% in 12 months, also in nominal terms, despite the fact that Brazil is wrapping up a record harvest, the data showed. Even as Brazilian farmers collect more than 100 million tonnes of corn this season, the price of the cereal, which is used to make livestock feed, rose more than 65% in 12 months, to a new nominal record above 60 reais per 60-kg bag, according to data from Cepea. "This year, all price records come from a demand shock," said Lucílio Alves, an official from Cepea. He said that a demand shock occurs when structural and political factors lead to a rise of the dollar against the local currency. Rice prices, another example, rose more than 100% in 12 months in real terms. COMMODITY Price in Reais August % change 12-month % change Crystal sugar (60 kg 85.13 8.50% 39% bag) Rice (60 kg bag) 94.02 38.2% 110% Cattle (15 kg/arroba) 237.60 4% 51% Cotton 331.10 (cent.) 16% 34% Coffee (60-kg bag) 610.57 8.76% 46.35% Corn (60-kg bag) 61.25 20.59% 66.7% Soy (60-kg bag) 137.63 15.65% 55.5% Wheat (tonne) 1,185.87 -4% 33.8% ($1 = 5.3893 reais) (Reporting by Roberto Samora Writing by Ana Mano)

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