UPDATE 2-Brazil's next crop will not be hurt by fall in fertilizer deliveries -expert
(Adds crop data for current season, projection for area expansion)
By Ana Mano
SAO PAULO, Aug 23 (Reuters) - Brazil is poised to produce more than 300 million tonnes of grains in 2022/2023 even as some farmers may cut fertilizer applications, Andre Pessoa, head of agribusiness consultancy Agroconsult, said on Tuesday.
Brazil will start planting soybeans and summer corn next month in the center west, and crop conditions will likely be excellent barring unforeseen weather issues, he said.
This season, Brazilian farmers will reap an estimated 271.4 million tonnes of grains overall, according to government data. That includes wheat which is being planted now in the country's south.
Speaking at a fertilizer industry event, Pessoa noted logistical bottlenecks may delay fertilizer deliveries to some farmers this year, as large volumes were imported in the first half of 2022 but storage and distribution capabilities have yet to be expanded.
Still, Pessoa said, crop yields will not suffer because there are nutrients still trapped in the soil after years of steady applications that will guarantee healthy plants, especially in soy and corn areas.
Brazil imports about 85% of the fertilizers it needs, according to fertilizer trade group Anda. Suppliers include Russia, Morocco, China and Canada, among others.
Agroconsult forecasts Brazilian farmers will expand planted area by 2.5 million hectares (6.177 million acres) in the 2022/2023 cycle. Most of the area expansion will come from soy fields.
"Even in the face of an expected fall in fertilizer deliveries, farmers will have enough to produce a spectacular crop," Pessoa said.
Deliveries of crop nutrients to Brazilian farmers will be around 45 million tonnes this year, slightly below the 45.8 million tonnes for 2021, according to Agroconsult projections and Anda data.
Brazil will likely import less fertilizer overall this season, Pessoa said.
Agroconsult projects imports at 36.9 million tonnes in 2022, compared with 39.2 million tonnes in 2021. (Reporting by Ana Mano in Sao Paulo Editing by Steven Grattan, Bill Berkrot and Matthew Lewis)
© Copyright Thomson Reuters 2022. Click For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp