Stratfor reports that a major drought is threatening Argentina’s agricultural crop for 2009.
According to the projections of the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange published on Jan. 16, the country’s wheat yield for 2009 will be 8.7 million metric tons, down from 16.3 million in 2008 (domestic wheat consumption in 2007 was approximately 6.7 million metric tons). Total wheat planting dropped by 350,000 hectares, or 8 percent, in the 2008 planting season, and the drought has affected what has already been sown. Corn production is projected to drop from its 2008 figure of 20.9 million metric tons to 16.5 million metric tons, with a reduction in crop planting by 26 percent from 3.2 million hectares in 2008 to 2.4 million in 2009. Soybean output, meanwhile, could fall to 40 million metric tons if the drought continues — a 7 million metric ton drop.