By Alastair Stewart
DTN South America Correspondent
SAO PAULO, Brazil (DTN) -- Rapid progress in the southern state of Parana allowed Brazilian soybean planting to move forward to 3% complete as of Friday, Oct.2. This is about on a par with the same stage last year and the five-year average, said AgRural, a local farm consultancy.
Excellent rains over the last couple of weeks emboldened farmers in Parana to start fieldwork shortly after the planting window opened. As a result, planting was 16% complete in that state as of Friday, up from 10% last week and beating the 8% recorded at the same stage last year, said the consultancy.
Those who planted in drier conditions in the west of the state were rewarded with rain last week.
Fieldwork remains slow in Mato Grosso, the No. 1 soybean state, where the early-season irregular rainfall so typical of El Nino years continues.
With margins tight, farmers in the Cerrado state are taking fewer risks and planting remains concentrated on fields that are irrigated.
As of Friday, planting was 2% complete in Mato Grosso compared to 5% at the same point last year, said AgRural.
Rainfall was restricted to sparse showers across the productive regions of the north, west and parts of the south of the state.
In Mato Grosso do Sul, soybean planting is 3% complete with the south receiving decent showers last week. In Goias, the planting window opened on Wednesday and 1% of fields were done as of Friday.
The good news for farmers in Mato Grosso and surrounding areas is that weather charts indicate more rain from Wednesday, with showers intensifying into next week, according to the Somar Meteorologia, a local weather service.
Areas in the west of Mato Grosso will get the best of the rain, explained Tiago Robles, a Somar weatherman.
The arrival of a cold front in southern Brazil will cause heavy rain to fall across Parana from Wednesday, which may impede fieldwork but will be generally beneficial to the crop.
Alastair Stewart can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow him on Twitter @AStewartBrazil
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