Brazil takes US crown in critical crop exports

Lazy eyes listen


Brazilian corn growers have dethroned the United States as the world’s leading corn exporter, Bloomberg said last week, adding that the South American country will account for almost 32% of worldwide shipments of the staple commodity in the 2023 agricultural year.

According to data quoted by the media from the US Department of Agriculture, the US would account for only 23% of worldwide maize exports in the agricultural year that concluded August 31, well behind the new leading exporter.

Brazil is anticipated to maintain its dominance in the 2024 harvest year, which begins on September 1. In recent years, the United States has only dropped out of first place once, in 2013, due to a terrible drought.

Over the last decade, American agricultural producers have relinquished the top spot in soybean and wheat shipments. Brazil managed to take the lead in exports of soybeans in 2013. The following year, the European Union and Russia began undermining the US’ global wheat dominance.  

Rising labor and logistics expenses in the United States, a scarcity of available farmland, the detrimental impact of a long-running trade war with China, and a high US dollar are claimed to blame for the change.

The United States continues to account for about one-third of global soybean exports, but it is just the fifth-largest wheat exporter, with a single-digit global share.

The use of domestically farmed corn for ethanol added to gasoline has been encouraged by US officials. Currently, around 40% of maize grown in the country is supplied to domestic mills that produce ethanol for use as a transportation fuel. Surpluses might sit in grain elevators for years, waiting for better prices.

Meanwhile, Brazil has been modernizing ports and infrastructure as a result of its warmer environment and weak local currency.