You are here

Brazilian farmers continue to protest, block highways

Soybean growers in Brazil are in their fourth week of protests, blocking grain silos and transit routes in hopes of convincing the government to approve new farm aid packages.

"Yes, the protest is getting bigger," Dr. Amelio Dall'Agnol, a spokesman for the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA), told Agriculture Online. "Today is very difficult to transport any agricultural product through highways. Those involved in the transportation of agricultural products are blocked. Export and some crushing plants are waiting for the beans."

According to a report on the Web site of news agency Mercopress, which reports on Mercosur countries, an estimated 1,500 farmers marched this week in the capital city of Brasilia, with other demonstrations around the country. In rural areas, farmers continue to block highways.

Governors from the states of Matto Grosso do Sul and Rio Grande do Sul flew to Brasilia to meet with President Lula da Silva this week over concerns the blockades and protests are "getting out of control," Mercopress reports. "If we'd had the soybean harvest we expected, the situation would have been even worse," said Rio Grande do Sul Governor Germano Rigotto.

Small farmers aren't the only ones protesting in Brazil. Monday, Brazil's National Agriculture Confederation (CNA), a producer group representing the country's large-scale farmers, voiced its concerns, calling the current state of agriculture, "the worst crisis of the last 20 years."

"Most protests, strikes or financial concerns that have engulfed Brazil over the last decade have gone by the wayside as production has continued to increase," market analyst Bryan Doherty wrote in a recent column for Agriculture Online.

He says the protests could cause a short-term positive price boost for U.S. farmers, but U.S. prices could really be hurt later in the year if Brazil dumps its inventory then.

Soybean growers in Brazil are in their fourth week of protests, blocking grain silos and transit routes in hopes of convincing the government to approve new farm aid packages.

Read more about

Talk in Marketing

Most Recent Poll

Will you plant more corn or soybeans next year?