Old News- April-December 2010 - click on the title to open and close the archive

BB finances soy production on recently cleared lands only outside the Amazon December 10, 2010

December 10, 2010

Institution joined the Soy Moratorium in the Amazon, which seeks to reconcile environmental conservation with economic development

Now we must extend the moratorium for the Cerrado region

Largest Brazilian state-owned bank and the main financier of agribusiness in Brazil, the Bank of Brazil announced the membership of the mazon Soy Moratorium, a covenant made four years ago to prevent the production and marketing of grain in areas of deforestation in the Amazon biome. With the accession of the bank, producers who seek credit will need to show where they will grow and if the area had been cleared legally before July 24, 2006.

The moratorium proposed by non-governmental organizations and environmentalists agreed in 2006 with the productive sector, which later was joined by the Brazilian government through the Ministry of Environment (the Agriculture has not yet joined), involves two major associations of soybean processors and exporters in Brazil: the Brazilian Association of Vegetable Oil Industries (ABIOVE) and National Association of Grain Exporters (ANEC). Together, they account for 92% of the domestic market, which means a trade of some 70 million tons per year of product.

The effort of Brazilian civil society must now turn to extend the moratorium to Cerrado, says Maurice Galinkin, editor of the
AgribusinessWatch, as this biome continues to lose natural areas for planting soybeans despite having been cleared in more than 50% in last four decades, during which the soybean farmers advanced the region with the new technology for commercial cultivation developed by Embrapa.

Farmers do not like

Predictably, the producers of soybeans in the region Center-West/North reacted against the BB joining to Soy Moratorium in the Amazon biome.

"The Bank of Brazil is a financial institution that operates with public funds and a principal source of financing for agribusiness needs to follow the law and not join a group that has implemented rules outside the law," the president of the Association of Producers Soybean and Corn Mato Grosso (Aprosoja / MT) and Aprosoja Brazil, Glauber Silveira.

Just by working with public resources that the Bank of Brazil has to contribute to the reduction of deforestation in Brazil, says the editor of
AgribusinessWatch, as the government and various sectors related to agribusiness have recognized as true the argument - based on studies - that some social-environmentalists NGOs already raised at the beginning of this millennium, that it is possible to expand - a lot - the Brazilian agricultural production without cutting down a single tree in the Amazon as much as in the Cerrado.

"The Aprosoja not advocate the illegal use of land for agricultural production," says the document released by the entity regarding the membership of BB at the Moratorium Group, "and reinforces the need for the country to responsible use of its resources for expanding the sustainable production in the country, which is already an example to the world. It is a fact that even before the moratorium, a study has indicated that there were only 0.2% of soybeans planted in the Amazon. "

Good deal

The soy sector moratorium works in conjunction with representatives of civil society organizations (especially environmental and social NGOs) to develop and implement a governance structure with rules on how to operate in the Amazon Biome and charge of the Brazilian government to the definition, implementation and enforcement of public policies about land use in this region.

The soy moratorium provides for regular monitoring in the areas of production. According to ABIOVE the field check done in 2010 revealed that only 7% of the soybeans produced in Brazil came from Amazon. Most of the crops, says the organization, is in regions outside the Amazon biome. For the representative of ABIOVE, Carlo Lovatelli, no increase in the price of soybeans with the moratorium, but the industry caters to the demanding international market, mainly in Europe.

The entrance of the Bank of Brazil in soy moratorium was established on December 1 pp. during a meeting at the bank headquarters in Brasilia, of the coordinators of the Working Group of Soybeans (GTS) Paul Adario, of Greenpeace, and Carlos Lovatelli, president of the Brazilian Association of Vegetable Oil Industries, and Vice President of Agribusiness Bank of Brazil, Luis Carlos Guedes Pinto.

At the time, Guedes assured that the bank will adopt the criteria of the soy moratorium on the analysis for release of credit. According to him, "the moratorium is an example that the country can only win with the elimination of deforestation."

The agreement signed by BB contains no funding the production of soy from deforested areas after July 2006 in the Amazon, the requirement for environmental regulation of the properties for the provision of funding and opening of credit lines for recovery of legal reserve and Permanent Preservation Areas.

The accession of the moratorium BB - adopted by the industry after several Brazilian NGOs studies on the progress of soybean in the Cerrado and Amazon, and that contributed to Greenpeace organize and conduct a rally in London against McDonalds and the consequent pressure against the involvement of the grain sector in the deforestation of the Amazon. It means that farmers who deforested after July 24, 2006 will no longer have access to credit from state-owned bank to plant soybeans in the Amazon biome. No money in the pocket, the farmer loses the main incentive for further deforestation for soy planting.

We must now extend this credit crunch and use it against the opening of new areas for both ranching in Amazonia (see the study “The Cattle Kingdom”, of Friends of the Earth - Brazilian Amazon, to download the document in Portuguese click
here to go to the AW Documents section ) and to agriculture and ranch farms in the Cerrado.

Easy money to clear

According to data from the Statistical Yearbook of Rural Credit, about R$ 90 billion was earmarked for rural credit in the Amazon between 1995 and 2009. Only in the Amazon Biome were R$ 40 billion. Half of the funds went to cattle ranches and soy plantations. In the same period farmers toppled 271,000 square km of forest, an area equivalent to the state of Sao Paulo.

Brazil is experiencing a positive moment in the struggle for forest protection. The society, producers and consumers give clear statements that no longer accept the falling of trees to make way for agribusiness. Zero Deforestation has become a common theme for politicians, environmentalists and farmers. "The country is convinced that it is necessary and possible to stop deforestation," says Paulo Adario, coordinator of Greenpeace's Amazon.

Sources: Agency Brazil, Portal Greenpece (www.greenpeace.org/brasil/) Aprosoja-MT, with the Centre
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

CTNBio plan a massive approval of GMOs December 10, 2010

December 10, 2010

It is the last meeting on this administration

While environmentalists and their organizations are with their attention focused on the international negotiations on measures to combat climate change that are occurring in the city of Cancun, Mexico, and an arm wrestling with the rural representatives at the Parliament about changes in the Forest Code, in Brasilia, the National Technical Committee on Biosafety - CTNBio has a huge agenda for its meeting on December 16 at, wich will occur at the Ministry of Science and Technology, in Brasilia.

At that meeting, scheduled to begin at 9 am and end at 18 hours, CTNBio intends to release the commercial use of Bayer’s transgenic cotton seeds (Cotton and called TwinLink GlyTol ®) and MON88913 from Monsanto; the "commercial release for cultivation, animal and human consumption, handling, transportation, disposal, import and export trade and free commerce of the corn MON 89034 × NK603 and TC1507 × their progeny ", at the request of Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences; genetically modified maize resistant to insects and glyphosate-tolerant MON88017 and their progeny, from Monsanto and Pioneer / DuPont, which also calls for the "commercial release for cultivation, animal and human consumption, handling, transportation, disposal, import and export, and any other activities related to TC1507 x MON810 x NK603, and its progeny. "
Besides seeds, the Committee provides the decision on the commercial release of "recombinant vaccine for poultry against Marek's disease and infectious laryngotracheitis - ILT INNOVAX ®, from Intervet Laboratory of Veterinary Brazil Ltda..


In addition to these eight points on commercial release of GMOs, the Commission still wants to consider and approve more 114 other items, contained in its agenda for the next day on December 16, not counting "Other matters": its members will also discuss amendments to the CTNBio Bylaws and Normative Resolution No. 5 and a monitoring plan. Also that day, its members will attend a lecture on "Genetically Modified Insects," which will be given by Dr. Margareth Capurro.

To know the Meeting Agenda for 12/16/2010 CTNBio, click
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Government says PAC programme has already complete 70% of the logistics works December 10, 2010

December 10, 2010

Works under the Growth Acceleration Program (PAC, in Portuguese) for roads, waterways, railways and ports were 70% complete by the end of October, while 24% have an adequate pace. According to the 11th PAC Balance Sheet, the actions that need attention and make up 4%, and on concern, 2%.

In all, 73% of predicted values for 1651 monitored planned actions have already been implemented and 23% are in proper execution stage. Only 3% of values for attention, and 1% are in precarious situation.

It is projected that by year's end, 6,377 km of roads will be completed, with 1,306 km of duplication and/or appropriateness; 1789 paving and/or construction. At that time the privatization of the operation of 3,282 kilometers will also be granted to companies.

By the end of December, the federal government predicts that 3,524 km of highways will be in construction and paving, and 1,592 km are being duplicated.

The government's expectation is that by year's end, 909 km of railways were completed and 3,757 km will be in progress. There are still 6,925 km in the development stage of projects and studies.

Already with regard to waterways, Tucuruí dam is completed and came into operation in late November. There are still ten river port terminals in the Amazon being builted.

Source: Daniel Lee, and Peter Peduzzi Yara Aquino, reporters Agency Brazil; edition Talita Cavalcante, with the AgribusinessWatch.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian soy stocks rose almost 40% in first half December 10, 2010

December 10, 2010

The major stocks of agricultural products registered on 30 June this year were those of soybeans, with 19.2 million tonnes, of maize and beans, with 12.1 million tons. Compared to stocks, 30 June 2009, positive changes were soy (39.2%) and corn (10.3%), while rice and wheat is down 1.55 to 3.9%, respectively.

This data come out from the research of stocks for the first half of 2010, released yesterday (09) by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). Among 17 products surveyed, rice, with 4.7 million tonnes and wheat grain, with 3.4 million, also had large amounts of stock in the first half.

Data from the IBGE survey also show that in the first half of 2010 the storage system of agricultural products fell by 0.4%, compared to the first half of last year. The South was home to 43% of the network of 8,785 outlets, while 22.8% were located in the Southeast, 22.15% in the Midwest, 8.5% and 3.65% in the Northeast in the Northern Region.

Despite the small drop in the number of establishments, the ability of the country store had an increase of 1.3% to 146.6 million tons.
Source: Virgil Paulo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition Talita Cavalcante.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Price increases above 30% make beef the "villain" of inflation this year December 10, 2010

December 10, 2010

The increase in meat prices was the main influence on Brazilian inflation of 5.25% accrued in the period from January to November this year. During this period, the meats were 26.79% more expensive, according to data released on 08 pp. by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). According to the institute, a kilo of rump in Rio de Janeiro from rise from R$ 13.74 in December 2009 to R$ 18.32 in November this year, a 33.3% increase. In Sao Paulo, the price increased from R$ 15.41 to R$ 19.88 (+ 29%) in the same period.

According to the coordinator of Price Indices of IBGE, Eulina Nunes dos Santos, the increase in meat prices can be explained by the high feed prices (caused by growth in the value of the cereals that make up the diet) and a reduction in cattle in Brazil. "The cattle herd in Brazil is in shorter supply. For three years, there was the slaughter of cows (breeding specimens). The lowest bid, coupled with the rise of major products, corn, etc makes the cost of producing higher. There was also increased demand that forced the price up", said Eulina dos Santos.

In general, foods are showing an increase in prices this year, which is pushing the rising inflation. Between January and November this year, food inflation accumulate 8.95%. During this period, in addition to meat, were also reported increases in the prices of black beans (32.64%), sugar (22.77%), dried meat (18.48% ), pasteurized milk (17.04%) and sugar (14.00%).

"The food is linked to climate and demand. If the population has a higher income, tend to consume more expensive products such as meat. This year, weather problems also occurred, which damaged some crops and, thus, increased prices ".

Besides meats, other items that most influenced the Consumer Price Index (IPCA) from January to November this year were domestic workers, with inflation at 11.02%, meal (8.47%) and colleges (6, 64%).


The IPCA, which measures the official inflation rate, was 0.83% in November. This is the highest monthly total since April 2005. The rate is higher than those recorded in October (0.75%) and in November 2009 (0.41%). For the year, the IPCA inflation reaches 5.25%. Over the past 12 months, the index is up 5.63%.

The National Index of Consumer Prices (INPC), which measures inflation for families earning between 1-6 minimum wages, increased by 1.03% in November. In October, the rate was 0.92%. Over the past 12 months, the INPC index is up 6.08%.
Source: Agência Brazil, with the AgribusinessWatch.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazil's cotton production will grow more than 34% in 2011 December 10, 2010

December 10, 2010

The grain harvest in 2011 will be 145.1 million tons, 2.5% lower than in 2010, according to the second estimate of the Systematic Survey of Agricultural Production, released yesteday (9) by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). The decline is attributed to lower research by crop estimates in the Southeast (-1.6%) and South (-9%).

Among the six products researched for the harvest of 2011, three had positive change compared to 2010 production, with emphasis on cotton seed (34.3%). The beans in the first grain harvest will produce a 26% higher crop, and rice will increase by 8.2%. The biggest drop in crop forecast is peanuts, with 10.9% less than in 2010, followed by the maize in the first grain harvest, with a negative growth of 7.3%. Soybeans, with an estimated production of 68 million 467 thousand tons in 2011, shows a drop of only 0.2% compared to 2010.

The research

The IBGE research is made in the Southeast, South and Midwest and in four more states (Rondônia, Maranhão, Piauí and Bahia). For this second estimate of next crop, made in November, raised the numbers were added to the projections of the Federation and the cultures that, by virtue of the agricultural calendar, did not have the first estimate.

With respect to the area to be harvested, four of the six products surveyed by IBGE have positive changes, and the cotton seed will have an increase of 26.6%. The reductions in planted areas or that are to be planted are: in peanuts (-3.2%) and corn (-0.2%).

Cotton prices encourage planting

According to IBGE, the best quote, both domestically and externally, explains the increased production of cotton, with a forecast for 2011 from 3.9 million tonnes against 2.9 million obtained in 2010. The state of Mato Grosso, the largest producer of cotton, indicates an increase of 33.7% in the area to be planted and 45.8% in the expected harvest.

The IBGE also revealed the eleventh estimate of the national harvest of cereals, pulses and oilseeds 2010. The data for November indicate a production of 148.8 million tonnes, which exceeds by 11.1% to 134 million from the 2009 harvest. Among the three main crops - soybeans, corn and rice - which together account for 91% of grain production, soybean registers an increase of 20.2% corn and 8.7%, while rice production fell 10.3 %, in comparison with the 2009 harvest.
Source: Virgil Paulo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition Talita Cavalcante
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Food prices will continue to increase in 2011 November 21, 2010

November 21, 2010

In annual report, FAO warns that rising prices have affected the trade balance of about 70 countries

Food prices hit the highest in two years and the FAO warns that the increase has anything to continue in 2011. In its annual report published on Wednesday, 17, the organization warned that the world should prepare for a scenario of rising food prices, inflation and suggests that higher prices have a negative impact on the trade balance of about 70 countries.

Early projections are that food prices should have a rise of up to 20% in 2011 before harvest below expectations and speculation surrounding the commodities.

For FAO, the import bill for food in the world will surpass the mark of U.S. $ 1 trillion in 2010, 26% more than last year and nearly reaching the same levels of the food crisis years (2007-08). The projection is the most severe ever made by FAO since 2007, when high food prices has destabilized governments and led thousands to protest in 25 countries.

"Consumers today have no alternative than to pay more for their food. The size of the harvest in 2011 is becoming increasingly critical. For stocks, and be redone so that prices return to normal, a significant expansion of production will be necessary", FAO warned. For the entity, "countries must remain vigilant about their inventory."

In recent months, prices of corn and wheat rose by 40%. Cassava, butter and sugar are recording their highest prices in 30 years. The meat and fish prices are above 2009. This is aside from the cotton, the highest price in 140 years.

Overall, inflation in food prices is 15% compared to 2009. Speculation, problems in Russia’s harvest and a strong activity in the stock futures market were the explanations ...

A few months ago, FAO insisted that the world food situation was worrying, but rejected talk of a new crisis. Now, the volatility of markets requires the entity to revise its numbers and its own discourse.

In October, the FAO price index hit rates in July 2008. Cereal production in 2010 will be 2% below 2009 levels and 63 million tons less than the FAO forecast in June ...

Since grain production will fall by 7.2%, in contrast to what FAO predicted just a few months, an increase of 0.9%. Wheat production will suffer a 5.1% drop, which will make the 2010-11 season at the lowest in three years. As a result, stocks of wheat will fall by 10%.

The production of maize will also suffer a decline of 2.1% against a fall of 12% stocks. For FAO, this scenario should cause prices to increase even more.

For soybeans, the forecast is down 0.3%, but from a record crop in the world of 454 million tons in 2009.

In the sugar industry, however, the prospect is a high production of 7.7% ...

The food stocks should also fall dramatically. Today, if the whole world stop to producing food, existing reserves would be sufficient to feed the population of the planet for 74 days ....

For now, though, the projections are bleak. "2011 will not be a good crop," warned the FAO report, which indicates that neither the U.S. nor Russia will have good performance.

Emerging -

But the alert entity that is not only lower than expected yields which are a challenge. Given the increasing consumption of food in developing countries, the era of high prices may have come to stay.

Until 2017, the projection is that the price of meat is 20% higher than we pay today. The wheat will increase 60% in seven years. Vegetable oils can cost up to 80% higher by 2017. At this point, the estimate is then that food prices are stabilized, but at high levels.

Source: Jamil Chad, Geneva, to O Estado de S. Paulo
To read the full story (in Portuguese), click
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Problem of Brazilian agriculture is credit, not open more land November 21, 2010

November 21, 2010

Research group analyzed the impact of the Forest Code change proposed by the ruralistas

See below the abstract by the authors

It is the lack of agricultural credit, no land to farm, which limits food production in Brazil.

The conclusion of a new study by researchers from USP (University of São Paulo), Unicamp (University of Campinas, SP) and INPE (the Institute for Spacial Research), which uses data from the IBGE and the United Nations, say that is not the Forest Code that prevents the Brazilians to have more food on the table.

The research, published in the periodical "
Biota Neotropica," shows that the planted area of beans and rice in the country has fallen from 6 million hectares in 1980 to less than 5 million hectares in 2007.

On the other hand, export crops such as sugarcane and soybeans, have grown rapidly-the last jumped from 10 million hectares in 1985 to nearly 25 million early this decade.

The great "swallower" is cattle land, which occupies 200 million hectares of the 250 million today for the production in the country.

The researchers say that if the average yield was raised to 1.5 head per hectare and the number of animals that are slaughtered in a herd to rise from the current 22% to 30%, another 70 million hectares could be released for production.

"Just to use fencing to manage cattle will increase productivity," says the agronomist Luiz Martinelli, USP Piracicaba, author of the study.

He said the study is a "technical response" to an article written by the Congressman Aldo Rebelo, who claimed to be the change in law needed because the 190 million Brazilians' need to produce food. "

"The area for rice and beans has decreased, and not because of the code but for the market problems," says Martinelli. "The infrastructure of production and marketing is bad, small and medium producers live with eternal debts with banks, and insecure land tenure."
Source: Caudies Angelo, Folha de São Paulo

Abstract (by the authors)
Through the analysis of census data on land use in Brazil this article shows that the dichotomy between food production and preservation of natural vegetation used as the main driver to change the Forest Code is false. We showed here that Brazil has already cleared an area large enough that support the production of food, fiber and bioenergy to meet the requirements of the country and global markets. We also showed the area of export-oriented crops like soybean and sugar cane have been expanded significantly in the last decades, while staple crops like rice and bean have decreased and the area planted with cassava has been stable for the last four decades. At the same time we show that the productivity of export-oriented crops has increased in a much more significant rate than staple crops or cattle stocking rate, which in average is extremely low in Brazil. We concluded by stating that the real constraint for food production in Brazil does not rely on the Forest Code environmental restrictions but instead in inequalities in land distribution and income, coupled with lack of credit to small producers and investment in research and development in the staples crops of the country.

How to quote this paper
Martinelli, L.A.; Joly, C.A.; Nobre, C.A. and Sparovek, G. The false dichotomy between preservation of the natural vegetation and food production in Brazil. Biota  Neotrop . Oct/Dec 2010 vol. 10, no. 4.
How to quote this paper
Martinelli, L.A.; Joly, C.A.; Nobre, C.A. and Sparovek, G. The false dichotomy between preservation of the natural vegetation and food production in Brazil. Biota  Neotrop . Oct/Dec 2010 vol. 10, no. 4. http://www.biotaneotropica.org.br/v10n4/en/abstract?point-of-view+bn00110042010 ISSN 1676-0603.

The main studies that comprised this research are:

points of view
The false dichotomy between preservation of the natural vegetation and food production in Brazil
Luiz A Martinelli , Carlos A Joly , Carlos A Nobre, Gerd Sparovek
(see the abstract above)

Changes in the Brazilian forest code: potential impacts on the ichthyofauna
Lilian Casatti
The review of the Brazilian Forest Act: harmful effects on amphibian conservation
Luís Felipe Toledo , Sergio Potsch de Carvalho-e-Silva , Celso Sánchez , Marina Amado de Almeida , Célio F. B. Haddad

Potential impacts of changes in the Brazilian Forest Code on reptiles
Otavio A. V. Marques , Cristiano Nogueira , Marcio Martins , Ricardo J. Sawaya
Potential impacts of the changes proposed in the Brazilian Forest Code on birds
Pedro F. Develey , Tatiana Pongiluppi
Forest legislative changes and their impacts on mammal ecology and diversity in Brazil
Mauro Galetti , Renata Pardini , José M. B. Duarte , Vera M. F. da Silva , Alexandre Rossi , Carlos A. Peres
Potential impacts of the proposed Brazilian Forest Act on native butterflies
André Victor Lucci Freitas
Bees, ecosystem services and the Brazilian Forest Code
Vera Lucia Imperatriz Fonseca , Patrícia Nunes-Silva
Click here to go to the English version of Biota Neotropica

Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Grain harvest in 2011 should be 2.8% lower than in 2010 November 21, 2010

November 21, 2010

The harvest of cereals, pulses and oilseeds is expected to reach 144.5 million tons in 2011.

The estimate is part of the Systematic Survey of Agricultural Production (LASP), released by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). The first forecast for next year shows that the expected volume is 2.8% below the 2010 harvest, which should reach 148.8 million tons.

The survey also showed that soybean should remain the main crop, with 68.1 million tons produced. Next comes the first corn crop, with 31.2 million; and rice, with 12.2 million tons.

The study indicates that the Southeast (-1.9%) and South (-0.9%) may have reduced production.

According to estimates, the harvested area in the coming year is expected to reach 47.4 million hectares, representing an increase of 1.7% over 2010, with growth in nearly all states, with the exception of Parana, Santa Catarina and Goiás
Source: Thais Leitão, reporter Agency Brazil; edition: Lily Beraldo
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Slaughter of cows five years ago would be the cause of current high price of meat November 21, 2010

November 21, 2010

Director of Agricultural Policy and Information of the National Supply Company (Conab), Silvio Porto, said the price of beef, "considered high by the market," not due to increase in the percentage of exports or the cost of rations.

The cause, he said, is caused by the impact of the slaughter of cows (cattle conducive to procreation) occurred in 2005, which is now causing a "delayed effect". Since then, according to Porto, there were no stocks in the Brazilian agriculture heifers and calves for fattening in sufficient volume to ensure a greater supply of meat.

He pointed out that livestock is not like the chicken, which yields results of the first two months before the beginning of creation. Therefore, he argued that it is misleading to link the high price of beef to the cost of rations based on corn or soybeans.

The director states that meat prices will normalize over the course of 2011.
Source: Lawrence Canuto, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Lily Beraldo

Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Foreigners bought an equivalent to 22 soccer fields per hour November 21, 2010

November 21, 2010

From late 2007 to early this year, 1,152 rural properties were acquired

The States of Amazon and Minas Gerais have 60% of the total land purchased by individuals and companies from other countries in the period Companies and individuals from other countries buy the equivalent of 22 football pitches on land in Brazil every one hour. In two and a half years, foreigners bought 1,152 properties, totaling 515,100 hectares.

The Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo compared most recent records made between November 2007 and May 2010 by INCRA (National Institute of Colonization and Agrarian Reform), which takes into account the acquisitions of companies and people from other countries.

In an attempt to contain the "foreign invasion", INCRA also regulates land purchases and leases made by companies based in Brazil, but which are controlled by foreigners.

"It is not xenophobia. Now we have rules that bring stability and enhances the legal fight against land grabbing," said the president of INCRA, Rolf Hackbart.

"Moreover, the measures do not prevent investors, because Brazil did not fail to deliver profitability," added the president of the federal agency.

However, there is no survey contemplating such a purchase, now under new rules.
Even limited to individuals and companies that are from outside of Brazil, the numbers of INCRA show that 60% of the total land purchased by foreigners between November 2007 and May this year are in the States of Minas Gerais and Amazon.

The chairman explained that the
Triângulo Mineiro, geographical area is classified as strategic by the ease of product flow, which attracts international sugar mills operated in the Northeast before.

"The attraction is called Brazil. Aliens seeking forest land to plant [and produce coal and cellulose], soybean and sugar cane. And, with restrictions in the Amazon, investors are looking for other areas," said Gilman Viana Rodrigues, Secretary of Agriculture Livestock and Supply of Minas Gerais State.

Forwards to São Paulo

Sao Paulo is the state where the fastest growing number of properties owned by foreigners: 75% (867) from new acquisitions.

For Incra are a lot companies that use high technology in small pieces of land, to produce mainly sugar cane.

With 1,229 properties spread over an area of 844,000 hectares, Mato Grosso, with areas of savannah and rainforest and strong production of soybeans, owns the largest area on behalf of companies and people from other countries.

The new rules approved by the president in August, however, does not affect foreigners resident in Brazil or inhibit the use of Brazilians to give legal status to the facade of business firms in other countries.

New rules

Folha learned that after many versions, the latest draft of the bill that increases the control on the acquisition of land is ready at the Presidential desk.

Besides trying to combat the "oranges" with new document requirements, the text points to the creation of rules for occupation of the Brazilian coast and is expected change in the concept of the frontier, now a fixed length of 150 km, that was the maximum range of a shot cannon.

The project may increase or decrease the size of the band, depending on the region. Although no direct prediction for the new project to Congress, the AGU (Attorney General's Office) believes that the main points of the proposal should be closed this year.
Source: Folha de Sao Paulo
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Farms in Parana begin producing electricity from biogas November 21, 2010

November 21, 2010

Itaipu began deploying a system for generating electricity from biogas in the municipality of Marechal Cândido Rondon in western Paraná. Biogas is produced with slurry of pig and cattle farms in the region.

According to the Itaipu the project, developed jointly with the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) and the city government, will benefit 41 rural properties. Each one has a digester that will turn waste into biogas. Afterwards, the biogas will be transported by pipeline to the power plant, which will transform biogas into electricity.

The energy will be used on their own farms and the surplus will be sold to Companhia Paranaense de Energia (Copel). "This kind of energy from biogas has a great potential but has been forgotten in the country," said the superintendent of the Itaipu Renewable Energy, Cicero Bley.

According to the Director of Environment of Itaipu, Nelton Friedrisch, the system still gives an appropriate destination for animal waste, preventing pollution of rivers. "It generates electricity by solving an environmental problem", he said.

The power generation system was activated today at two farms. According to Cicero Bley, no problem was detected in tests. "Everything is 100% working and both properties are already generating energy." It is expected that the system is deployed on all property in March of next year.
Source: Agência Brazil; edition: Aécio Amado, with the AgribusinessWatch.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

TCU: BNDES helped deforest the Amazon

October 29, 2010

The audit points failure in the coordination of government programs

The Brazilian Union Audit Court (TCU) attributed to a "failure" of the “Casa Civil” the collision between two government public policies under Luis Inacio da Silva Administration. In the last two years, BNDES has invested billions in meat processors, contributing to the advance of cattle in the Amazon, contrary to the policy to combat deforestation.

Between 2008 and 2010, the National Bank of Economic and Social Development has invested nearly $ 10 billion in major stores such as JBS, Bertin (they merged) and Marfrig. The purchase of equity of these companies by the bank wanted to consolidate the country's position as a leading world exporter of animal protein.

Only at the end of 2009, BNDES started to charge the meat processors that benefited with its loans to not buy cattle from illegaly deforested areas. It was a reaction to pressure from prosecutors of Pará State against illegal cattle, which had the support of major supermarket chains. The reaction of BNDES came six months after the release of the study "The Cattle Kingdom" (download in Documents), produced by the NGO Friends of the Earth, have identified the progress of major slaughterhouses in the Amazon sponsored by investment bank.

"Flagship" of export

The "meat complex" should become the leading exporter of Brazilian agribusiness sector, according to the Productive Development Policy of the Ministry of Development, from the perspective of export products with higher added value in the country. At this time, the government itself had already recognized as the livestock advance as the main reason for deforestation of the Amazon rainforest.

It lacked coordination in the government to avoid bumps between the two policies, says the court. "We identified gaps in coordination and liaison, in charge of the Civil House," among the different government programs.
Asked about the auditors' finding, the Civil House argued that they had contributed to the reduction of deforestation in the Amazon. The rate announced in late 2009 was the lowest in 20 years: 7.4 square km. "That does not mean we're satisfied. We need to keep improving and there is always room for it, "said Chief of Staff.

At the time of investment in large meat producers, official reports show that livestock was responsible for 80% of deforested areas. In 2006, Amazon concentrated a third of the national herd. In 2007, the pace of chainsaws returned to grow. With the funds from BNDES, the enterprises reinforced the advance of cattle ranching in Amazonia: now all have industrial plants in the region.

"As a consequence, there was some meatpackers who benefited from the BNDES acquired cattle from farms involved in illegal deforestation and slave labor," the audit reports approved by the TCU.

BNDES investments in meat processors since 2005 totaled R$ 12.7 billion. The court also assessed credits from Amazon Bank and the Bank of Brazil, with a total investment of $ 31 billion, which reaches part of rural credit in the decade.
At the time the auditors were in the field, was not found noncompliance with environmental legislation. But the report points out that the proof of regularity on the part of money-makers began to be required in July 2008. And that this control does not check the documents nor does it assess the impact on the supply chain.

Source: Martha Salomon, O Estado de Sao Paulo newspaper, with the AgribusinessWatch. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.
To see the full story, in Portuguese, click http://www.estadao.com.br/noticias/vidae, helped bndes-to-sponsor-of-deforestation-amazon-say-TCU, 628829.0. Htm

International speculation with the Cerrado’s land October 29, 2010

October 29, 2010

Called Landco, the trading company of agricultural lands of the SLC has not yet been officially formed, but already works with ambitious plans. The company should be born by the first quarter of next year with 90,000 hectares and add more capital to 150,000 over three years. In 2013, therefore, can count on 240,000 hectares in the Cerrado area that now have strong growth potential.

With the creation of the new company, the group aims to add value to those he considers his greatest expertise: on the one hand, agricultural production itself, which remains under the responsibility of SLC Agrícola; the other, the purchase and sale of land, which will be with Landco.

The new company will focus on the acquisition of land with potential for recovery, says the CEO of SLC Agrícola, Arlindo Moura. Then he says, this land will be leased to own SLC Agricola, who may occupy them with grain production. When the properties achieve satisfactory values, may be sold by Landco, in a continuous cycle. Based on historical trading land of SLC Agrícola the last 10 to 15 years, explains Moura, the potential is that the assets provide an annual return of around 19% to 20%.

The initial 90,000 hectares will be transferred to Landco for SLC Agrícola - which thus will have 51% of the new company. The remaining stake will be sold to foreign sovereign funds - are among the major countries like Qatar, Dubai, China and Singapore. "We are already negotiating with some funds. The idea is to be a pool of them," said Moura.

For strategic reasons, the president of SLC Agricola did not report the market value of land to be transferred, nor how much will the contribution of future partners by 49% of Landco. "We're still in negotiation and promotion of these values may hinder the progress," explains the executive.

He says the new lands acquired will be a combination of degraded and productive areas, especially in Piaui, where there are many areas to be opened, but also in Tocantins and Maranhão. "Mato Grosso also remains an opportunity. There is much degraded pasture, very productive," he says.

Moura explained that the new company plans are to start selling the land at the end of the period of three years of investments, and at a pace of one farm per year. "There may be a new capital increase at the end of that period to extend the acquisitions. With the same or with other investors," he says.

Moura admits to fear that the restriction on purchase of land by foreigners will hinder the company's plans in ten or 15 years, as it may reduce the liquidity of assets. Anyway, the company goes ahead with his business, although it considers that it should come ahead of an "interesting" legal fight. "The law to which it refers is the restriction of 1971 and predicted the existence of foreign and domestic firms. The Constitution of 1988 vetoed this segregation and began to consider that all companies operating in Brazil are Brazilian. Therefore, in our view, this restriction is unconstitutional. "

Source: Valor Econômico newspaper, reproduced by http://porkworld.com.br/noticias/post/slc-agricola-traca-ambicioso-avanco-no-mercado-de-terras

Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian emissions of greenhouse gases increased by 60% between 1990 and 2005 October 29, 2010

October 29, 2010

Deforestation accounts for 61% of Brazilian emissions, according to government

Brazil's emissions of greenhouse gases increased by about 60% between 1990 and 2005, from 1.4 to 2.192 gigatons of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent (a measure that considers all greenhouse gases). The number was presented last Tuesday (26) by Minister of Science and Technology Sergio Rezende, during the annual meeting of the Brazilian Forum on Climate Change.

The new national inventory of emissions will be presented to the UN Convention on Climate Change before the next Conference of Parties (COP) in November in Cancun, Mexico. The balance is part of the Second National Communication to the Convention - a report of what Brazil has done to mitigate the causes and mitigate the impacts of global warming.

The previous inventory data brought from 1990 to 1994. This year, the commitment to the UN was to provide data until 2000. But the Brazilian government decided to go ahead and add numbers up to 2005.

Deforestation is still the main villain of national emissions of greenhouse gases. The sector of land use change and forestry accounts for 61% of total emissions. Agriculture comes next with 19% of national emissions and energy sector accounts for another 15%.
The inventory also accounts for the pollution and waste treatment, accounting for 3% and 2% of the national total, respectively.

Rezende also presented an estimate of Brazil's emissions in 2009, which will not be taken to the UN. According to the calculations, last year Brazil has issued 1.775 gigatons of CO2 equivalent, 33% less than in 2005. The drop, according to the minister, is due mainly to the reduction of deforestation in the Amazon in recent years, added to keeping the same level of growth of emissions in other sectors.
Source: Lawrence and Luana Yara Aquino, reporters Agency Brazil. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Transgenic soybean in MT has a higher cost of production October 29, 2010 October 29, 2010

October 29, 2010

Survey confirms that in Mato Grosso the transgenic soybean has a higher cost of production

The Institute Matogrossense of Economics and Agriculture (IMEA) reviewed the operational cost of the soybean crop this year. Values based on the month of September increased for the previous projection of August. However, still Sorriso county has the lowest operating cost of the entire state. In this county, planted hectare must cost R$ 936.53. But the higher cost will be in planting for the producers of Campo Verde, R$ 1,037.09.

However, if we consider the total cost for soybean, Diamantino has the lowest value quoted at R$ 1,487.34 per hectare. Sorriso already ranks second lowest cost with the amount of R$ 1,503.80. As the operating cost, the total for the producers of Campo Verde is the highest, around R$ 1,615.08. It is noteworthy that in Diamantino e Sorriso the estimate is for planting conventional soybeans while in Campo Verde is for transgenic soybeans.

According to the IMEA, operational cost is the value that producers pay for inputs like seeds, fertilizers, pesticides and agricultural operations such as labour. The total cost is the sum of operating costs with other expenses such as land cost, depreciation of machinery, technical assistance, transportation of production, among others.
Source: Alex Fame/Só Noticias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Poultry and pork producers want government auctions to speed up maize stocks October 29, 2010

October 29, 2010

The president of the Brazilian Chamber of the Productive Chain of Maize and Sorghum, César Borges, said on Wednesday morning (27) that the industry must submit by tomorrow to the Minister of Agriculture, Wagner Rossi, propose to accelerate auctions of government stocks corn. "We discussed the quick turn of the auction. Now more to supply than to guarantee minimum prices, as prices rose," Borges said after a meeting of the chamber.

Producers of poultry and pigs, which use much corn as feed, alert to the danger of lack of product. Earlier this month, the report's release during the 2010/2011 season, representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture talked about the possibility of adopting the strategy of making the auction of public inventories of 5.5 million tons of corn to avoid the higher cost end up influencing the price of meat.

Borges also said that began to be discussed in the sectoral chamber the use of corn to ethanol production. He said the corn would be used in a complementary way to reduce the idle period of the ethanol industry, which works in full capacity during the cane harvest months and then stop completely until the next harvest.

"It is not our idea to use corn as the United States," he said, after saying he would support the government. However, he admitted that the talks are very early and, moreover, the larger flag of Brazilian ethanol abroad is precisely its output from a product that not serves as food for the population: the cane sugar.
Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Joao Carlos Rodrigues. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

China continues to import a lot of soy, despite its vast inventory October 29, 2010

October 29, 2010

According to an expert on food, supplies of soybeans and edible oil in China are able to satisfy domestic demand on account of stocks and rising imports of oilseeds. "We have ample stocks," said Shang Qiangmin, director of CNGOIC - Centre National Grain and Oils Information of China.

However, according to the director of the National Center, imports will still have a huge increase this year. According to figures from CNGOIC, purchases should reach 54 million tons, far surpassing last year's volume of 42.55 million tonnes.

In October, Chinese imports of soybeans should reach 4.65 million tons and 4.5 million tonnes in November and another 4.7 million tons in December. Without giving specific numbers, Shang said that China's soybean stockpiles have grown significantly over the past two years.

The Asian nation is the world's largest importer of oilseeds and highly dependent on international markets. About 60% of the country's edible oil is imported. Imports also include extraction of oil, soybeans and other oilseeds.

Sales of U.S. soybeans have increased 85% reaching the 2.02 million tons in the week that ended on Oct. 14. Of this total, 72% of imports were sold to China.


According to analysts, the prices of soybeans on the Chicago Bourse are already rising for the third week and speculation that China will sustain its purchases stimulate further advances in prices. Allied to this, the USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture United States), early this month cut its forecast for grain production this year, which also served as fuel for rising values.

"The price rally was driven by rise in international market due to high synergy between national and international market," he said.

The rise also affected the market for edible oil in the last three months, which led to a concern that the increase prices in bulk could also be passed on to retail. The average price of soybean oil has risen more than 30% in late October, according to figures from CNGOIC.
Source: Agricultural News. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

UN proposes standards for land acquisitions by foreigners October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

Rules include recognition of the right to land and natural resources to any person who is already in agricultural areas and transparency in transactions

Read more, below:
Research shows that there are about 1 billion people hungry worldwide

ROME - The United Nations (UN) announced yesterday (13), guidelines to purchase land in developing countries by foreign investment. The rules were proposed to stimulate what the entity called "responsible investment" in agriculture, seeking to avoid the purchase of millions of hectares in several regions of the world, usually to the detriment of those who occupy these lands.

The guidelines include recognition of the right to land and natural resources who is already in agricultural areas and transparency in transactions. "These investments require a legitimacy that is lacking today", said Olivier De Schutteur, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, during the Conference on World Food Security, which is being held in Rome.

The farm became the subject of great impact with the international food crisis of 2007 and 2008, when the rise in grain prices led to protests, inflation and increasing hunger in many emerging economies. The episode also made investors see profit opportunity in the markets of agricultural commodities, and prompted some to buy large tracts of land in poorer countries where scarce capital prevents a more efficient food production.

The recent sharp rise in commodity prices, caused by breaks in grain harvests in Eastern Europe and other regions of the world because of bad weather, again attracted speculation of financial investors, helping to play the theme of the food crisis to the center of attention. These investors are from Gulf countries like Qatar, which are dependent on food imports, the banks in Europe and the United States.

A World Bank report released last month revealed that 45 million hectares of land were acquired in developing countries in 2009. Two thirds of this extension are in Africa. Last month, the Saudi Star Group acquired 139,000 hectares of farmland in western Ethiopia, where Saudis are already owners of millions of hectares. In neighboring Sudan the situation is the same. They argue that they are helping to modernize agriculture in developing countries by increasing the supply of local jobs and providing new technologies and services cooperatives. "The lack of investment is the cause of hunger of a billion people in the world," argued John Latham, director of FAO UN program. "We need to encourage investment, the lack of it has been a problem for many years," he said. According to the FAO, agricultural production must increase by 70% by 2050 to meet the demand for food, feed and biofuels.

But experts criticize the transactions involving the purchase of large tracts of land saying that many of them are secret and of dubious legality. The rights of those who holds generally are not legally recognized, which leads the governments of developing countries to present it as an area belonging to their heritage, according to Ruth Hall, of the Institute for the Study of Poverty, Land and Agrarian Issues at the University of Western Cape. "The speech of vacant land is simply not true. Transactions displace the local population rather than supporting it," she said. Ben White, from the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague, also argued that local producers usually have only precarious possession of the land, without legal documentation of ownership, and are often seduced by the money offered to them. "Farmers are extremely vulnerable to transnational corporations to purchase land," he said.

Experts also are not convinced that the guidelines set by the UN will fight corruption and the secret purchases of large tracts of land. The guidelines may try to recognize "the marginalized," but history shows that, alone, the guidelines will not solve the problem, said Ian Scoones, from the Institute of Development Studies -IDS, at the University of Sussex.
Source: Ana Conception of the Agência Estado, with the AgribusinessWatch. The information is from Dow Jones. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Research shows that about 1 billion people are hungry worldwide October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010 A study by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) shows that at least one billion people suffer from malnutrition in the world. The situation is considered serious in Latin America, especially in Bolivia, Guatemala and Haiti.
The study, entitled “Global Hunger - Index 2010” shows that nearly half of children are affected by malnutrition. The highest levels are found Saharan Africa and South Asia.

Brazil is considered by researchers as a success story in the issue of hunger. According to the study between 1974 and 1975, 37% of Brazilian children were malnourished. The index fell to 7% between 2006 and 2007, an improvement attributed to increases in investments in nutrition programs, health and education have occurred since the late 70's.

The study also shows that the number of undernourished people is growing again, after falling between 1990 and 2006. The explanation is the economic crisis and the increase in global food prices. IFPRI considers the situation "extremely alarming" in three countries, all African countries (Chad, Eritrea and the Democratic Republic of Congo). Another 26 countries live "alarming" situation.

According to the United Nations Organization for Agriculture and Food Security (FAO), a human starves while consuming less than 1,800 kilocalories per day, the minimum for a healthy and productive living.

Headquartered in Washington, IFPRI is maintained by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), which is an alliance of 64 governments, private foundations and regional organizations. The Institute's goal is to seek sustainable solutions for ending hunger and poverty worldwide.
Source: Sabrina Craide, reporter of Agência Brasil, with information from the BBC Brazil; edition Talitha Cavalcante
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian agribusiness exports October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

- A record was accumulated in the past 12 months, reaching $ 72.3 billion

- Balance surplus of the São Paulo’s State agribusiness grows 30% January-September

- Exports of beef from Brazil fell by 12.5%

- Exports of soybeans from Mato Grosso is down 20.4% in year

Brazilian agribusiness exports reached U.S. $ 72.3 billion between October 2009 and September 2010, beating the record in the series for the period of 12 months. To overcome the global financial crisis, the Ministry of Agriculture predicts that the annual record, registered in 2008 with $ 71.8 billion, has been hit this year, reaching around U.S. $ 73 billion. The figures were disclosed yesterday (13).

The September result is also a record for the month with $ 7.36 billion and was 28.1% higher than the same month last year. Imports also increased 32.6% compared to August, reaching $ 1.17 billion. The trade balance of the month, with this performance, recorded a surplus of $ 6.18 billion.

The ministry reported that products that contributed most to the increase in exports were coffee (44.3%), meat (14.2%), cereals, flours and preparations (151.5%), fruit juices (117.3 %), forest products (18.3%), soy (6.7%), and fiber and textile products (58.7%).

The countries that increased their purchases from Brazil were Algerie (337%), Egypt (113.4%), Saudi Arabia (68.0%), Iran (63%), Italy (62%) Japan (55.9%), China (50.8%), and South Korea (46.7%).

Source: Danilo Macedo, reporter of Agência Brasil; edition: Rivadavia Severo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Balance surplus of the São Paulo’s State agribusiness grows 30% January-September

The sector's exports totaled U.S. $ 14.80 billion in the period, 29.8% higher than the same period in 2009, when foreign sales reached U.S. $ 11.40 billion

The São Paulo’s State agribusiness trade balance generated a surplus of $ 9.05 billion in January-September period, up 30.2% compared with $ 6.95 billion for the first nine months of last year, announced the São Paulo State Institute Agricultural Economics (IEA). The sector's exports totaled U.S. $ 14.80 billion in the period, 29.8% higher than the same period in 2009, when foreign sales reached U.S. $ 11.40 billion. Imports jumped 29.2% to $ 4.45 billion to $ 5.75 billion during the periods.

The performance of agribusiness in the first nine months of 2010 following more than recorded in the balance of trade throughout the State of São Paulo, which showed a deficit of $ 12.02 billion in the same range. If agribusiness was not considered in the calculations, the foreign trade deficit would be U.S. $ 21.07 billion in São Paulo.

The agricultural sector has increased its stake from 37.3% to 39.4% on all exports from the State of São Paulo, compared the first nine months of 2009 and 2010. The total São Paulo exports between January and September 2010 totaled $ 37.57 billion.

Imports of agribusiness have responded in the first nine months by 11.6% from $ 49.59 billion with the busiest shopping outside Sao Paulo, down 0.7 percentage point compared to 12.3% from the same period of 2009.
Source: Gustavo Porto, newspaper “O Estado de São Paulo”. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Exports of beef from Brazil fell by 12.5%

The total volume of beef exported by Brazil (fresh, kids, processed meat and bowel) fell 12.5% in September, reaching 162,780 tonnes carcass equivalent (tce). In sales, the decline was 12.8%, reaching $ 415.52 million, according to the Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade (MDIC).
The seasonality of purchases of certain markets, prices, and less attractive especially when compared with the value of cattle on the rise, this caused a decline in Brazilian exports. It is the smallest volume exported since February this year when Brazil exported (assuming the same items listed above) 153,230 tec.
Source: Scot Consulting/Agronotícias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

MT of soybean exports is down 20.4% in year

The soybeans remains as the main export product in Mato Grosso State. So far this year, January-September, product commercialization, though not as great as those recorded last year. During this period, there were sales of $ 3.1 billion of this product in overseas market, while in the same period last year it was $ 3.9 billion business. A drop of 20.4%.

Besides soybeans, its by-products also recorded falls. One example is the sale of crude soybean oil. From January to September, the product has fallen 18.35% on marketing to U.S. $ 212.9 million. In the same period last year registered $ 260.8 million. Fall also recorded on the sale of cotton threshed. This year, it was negotiated $ 214 million, while last year the figure were $ 219.5 million. A reduction of 2.51%.

The sales of maize grain increased by 60.76% between the compared years. This year, until now, it was sold $ 651 million of this product, while in the same period last year this value was U.S. $ 405 million. Sales of frozen boneless beef also recorded a good increase. During the year, traded U.S. $ 472.7 million while last year it was U.S. $ 305.4 million. Increase of 54.73%. Source: Alex Fame/Só Notícias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Concentration in the meat industry divides the supply chain October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

Currently the ten largest slaughterhouses in the country hold 30% of the domestic slaughter market, according to the Brazilian Association of Meat Exporters

The concentration in the meat industry, which had its movement more intense in the last two years with the global economic crisis, divides the members of the supply chain segment. "The concentration shows our country's strength in the sector. But it has to be balance in this movement to be have some protection for the farmer," said the president of the Brazilian Rural Society (SRB), Cesario Ramalho da Silva, during the event "Concentration in the Meat Industry - Implications and Challenges", held today (14) by SRB at its headquarters in São Paulo.

According to the sustainability coordinator of the Brazilian Association of Meat Exporters (Abiec), Fernando Sampaio, who represented the association at the event, although there was an intense movement of mergers and acquisitions in the sector in recent years, the ten largest slaughterhouses in the country hold only 30% of the domestic cow slaughter. "In addition, 50% of culls in Brazil still occur informally," said Sampaio. "But no point in an industry have, for example, 20% to 30% of the national market. The problem is when a single company is responsible for 100% of a state slaughters," countered Ramalho da Silva.

The chairman of the Beef Cattle Industry at the Federation of Agriculture and Livestock of Goiás (FAEG), José Manoel Caixeta Haun, recognizes that the merger brings some benefits to the industry, but at the same time defends the care of the producer. "The concentration is favorable within the limit not to interfere and disrupt the negotiation between producer and the industry. There is a need to seek foreign markets for Brazilian beef - which opens the way for the producer to access this 'new' client - but without suppressing the domestic market", he said.

For him, besides the concentration, another factor of concern in recent years is the intense movement of bankruptcy of companies. "The recent law of bankruptcy can not happen only to benefit the company but the supply chain. There is a meat industry that has requested bankruptcy protection and was able to renegotiate its debt with suppliers in 20 years, which is bad. You must have a government interference in the productive activity, so that do not damage the cattle producers", he said, citing the case of the Frigorífico Independência in bankruptcy protection since May 2009. "The Independência has left more than R$ 70 million in debts to creditors/suppliers, and in Goiás State there is a producer who has R$ 8 million remaining to receive," he said.

As for the superintendent of the National Rural Education (Senar-GO), Camilo Antonio Flávio Lima, the sector is missing a performance of Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES) in supporting the expansion of small and medium sized companies in the industry. "What has to be asked is whether the BNDES has lent money to those who practice tax evasion and has financed small and medium to survive this market," he said.

The regulation of agribusiness contracts was one of the solutions presented by the lawyer for the civil and agricultural fields, Fernando Campos Scaff, as a protection mechanism for producing the industry's consolidation. "With the merger, the trend is that there is a worsening imbalance of the producer and industry where the producer is the weakest part and the company, the strongest. For a balanced relation, we need to regulate and typify the agroindustrial contracts," suggested.

As for the professor of Economics at the University of São Paulo, Sylvia Saes, concentration is present today in all segments of the economy: financial, transportation, among others. "Somehow, with all its consequences and challenges, the concentration of the meat industry has professionalized the industry, which still needs to evolve technologically and in their management activities," he noted.
Source: Suzanne Inhesta, from the Agência Estado. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Russian new requirement may affect sales of Brazilian chicken October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

Another protectionist action of the government of Russia

According to Russian news agency Ria Novosti, a new challenge awaits the companies exporting poultry meat to Russia: from January 1, 2011 will be banned in the country the use of frozen poultry meat to the development of post-processed products. Announcing the measure, Gennady Onishchenko, head of the main agency responsible for sanitary inspection in Russia (Rospotrebnadzor) agreed that "there will be serious implications for the import process."

At the same time he noted that the ban takes effect in less than ninety days ("for being made the necessary changes to health regulations), Onishchenko said that the use of frozen poultry meat has been prohibited since the beginning 2010 in the manufacture of infant foods. It will now be extended to food in general, only allowing post-processing using chilled chicken.

Justifying the measure, the head of Rospotrebnadzor commented that "today, the meat can be stored refrigerated for up to 120 days in an inert gaseous atmosphere." But did not deny that the cost factor is capable of hindering the deployment of the new rule, only adding that "in any way, the chilled meat is much better, in terms of physiological value, than frozen meat." Why - it was found that the explanation - "the frozen meat can suffer repeated thawing and freezing."

As the announcement came earlier this week, has not been possible to evaluate in depth the effects that the measure will bring to companies exporting to Russia, or even for those internally developed processes of industrialization.

But the principle seems clear that the Russian poultry industry itself will be the winner, since - at least in this area - will not face foreign competitors. However this will affect domestic prices of post-processed, since the domestic product, whether it be cold, it is more expensive than imported frozen.
Source: AvSite/Agronotícias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

FAO expects to announce the eradication of rinderpest in the world in 2011 October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

The director general of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Jacques Diouf said today (14) that the global effort to combat rinderpest will officially be able to eradicate the disease. Diouf compared to the movement in these efforts, in 1980, to end with smallpox. Discussions on the subject took place in Rome at the Symposium of Global Eradication of Rinderpest.
The expectation, Diouf said, is that the House of Representatives of the World Organization for Animal Health officially recognized in May 2011, the eradication of rinderpest.
Diouf recalled that rinderpest does not affect humans directly, but has a quick ability to kill cattle and other hoofed animals. He said there are also consequences for agriculture and the economy.
"The control and eradication of rinderpest has always been a priority for FAO, since its early days, whose mission [principal] is to defeat hunger and strengthen global food security," said the director-general.
Diouf noted that the rinderpest over the past centuries was responsible for the deaths of animals in Europe, Asia and Africa. He said there was widespread famine and disease wiped out millions of wild and domestic animals. "In 1880, rinderpest has caused losses of up to 1 million head of cattle in Russia and Central Europe," he said.
In 1994 he launched the Global Rinderpest Eradication in order to promote actions to collaborate with the international community to control rinderpest in a systematic and comprehensive way. "The extraordinary success of the program would not have been possible without the efforts and determination of governments of all countries affected," said Diouf.
Source: Renata Giraldi, reporter for Agência Brasil, with information from FAO; edition: Lily Beraldo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Technology control ensures successful production of palm in Brazil October 14, 2010

October 14, 2010

Palm oil, also known in Brazil as “dendê”, is the most consumed and produced worldwide. Brazil has the largest area of suitability land for the planting of rapeseed, while importing more than half of what it consumes. "The challenge is to expand the production of palm with sustainable criteria, without losing the quality and productivity of the plant," said the general coordinator of Agro-Energy Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply (MAPA), Denilson Ferreira, in press conference in Belém, the capital of the State of Pará, yesterday (13).

To meet the market demand, Ferreira, the general manager of Embrapa Technology Transfer, Ronaldo Andrade, and the head of the Embrapa Agroenergy, Frederico Durães, presented the new hybrid palm cultivar, released by Embrapa, which ensures higher productivity and resistance.

The hybrid oil palm is a cultivar BRS Manicoré developed from the cross between the African oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) originates from the Amazon region and the American palm (Elaeis oleifera). "The variety was tested for 20 years in areas were usually occurs the ‘lethal yellowing’, caused by a plague," said Ronaldo Andrade. He said that after that period, the hybrid Manicoré had not any symptoms of yellowing. "This makes it ideal for cultivation in regions indicated as preferred for planting oil palm by climatic zoning, as the North," said Andrade.

One of the main advantages of the new cultivar is the content of unsaturated fatty acids (known as "good fat") higher than in other species, making it suitable for the food industry and for biodiesel production. Other features of the hybrid are productivity (30 tons per hectare, per year), reduced growth rate of the stem (which facilitates the extraction of fruit), rate of oil extraction in about 20% higher than that of other species, cycle longer harvest and less susceptible to the attack of defoliants insects.

Biodiesel - Palm oil is considered an alternative to produce biodiesel. Brazil has, according to the Agro-Ecological Zoning of the Palm Oil, about 32 million hectares of deforested areas with suitability for the expansion of cultivation, being an agroindustrial intensive manpower. It is considered an activity that can contain the migratory flow from rural to urban centers.

Besides its value to the national economy, with oil production, oil palm cultivation also brings environmental benefits. The plant has the potential to absorb carbon dioxide, contributing to reducing the emission of greenhouse gases.
Source: Mapa. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Europe pays 50% more for organic soybeans from Brazil September, 19, 2010

September, 19, 2010

The Brazilian soy is cheaper in foreign markets, when it comes to genetically modified grain. Large producers dominate this segment of the agribusiness and the vast majority opted to grow genetically modified soybeans. The super grain harvests in Brazil and the United States end up dropping the price in foreign markets.

In the field of organic soy, it does not. The European market value, increasingly, the natural grain cultivated with ecological techniques and without using chemical pesticides. This is the case with Vili ermi Hoffmann, a small farmer from the region of Capanema, Parana. Owner of an area of only 15 hectares, Vili opted for about 14 years, to work in the most natural possible yields of soybean and wheat planted by him, his wife and son. Currently, the family is cleaning up the area to receive natural seeds of soybean and wheat, so the rains begin.

"This will be the 14th season. Already delivered 13. Therefore, we work with organic soybeans and nearly 14 years with great satisfaction, "says the farmer, son of Germans who arrived in the region of Capanema in the 40s. Vili's property is in the municipality of Highlands, near Capanema.

He reaped a little more than 700 bags of soybeans and wheat nearly 400, with certified organic grains and in the last harvest.
"Saling everything for Gebana company. It all goes to Europe. They make organic certification and I do not pay anything for it", he says, referring to the small Swiss company that promotes the certification and marketing of organic products, in cooperation with producers.

The Brazilian soy is very cheap, according to Vili. Currently, the bag of transgenic soybeans cost about R$ 30, and organic about R$ 45. Already a bag of conventional soybean (non-GMO) is worth around R$ 1 more than GM.

"The health of humans and animals is not good with soy with pesticides. For this reason I began to grow organic. I stopped growing tobacco because of the amount of pesticides that had to use in planting", he says in his heavy German accent.
"I am against GMOs. May be harmful to the environment and for humans and animals", he emphasizes.

More work

Soybean farming organic is more expensive and difficult, but does not give up Vili. "The organic soybeans provides 70% more work than the conventional," says the farmer. Just to clean the soil after harvest, are four months. "I spend a little more with tractor, grill and then to sow," he adds.

On the progress of GM crops in South, says Vili, as yet, no worries. "If GM soya get close, it will be a blow for us", he says. The closeness of planting transgenic represents a contamination risk to organic crops, because there could be cross species by natural pollination process. This would lead to depreciation in the price of organic grain. "My farm is far removed from transgenic crops also planted cane and pasture, the canalita, around the organic, it functions as a barrier to GMO."

The Program of Gebana Responsible Soy, which encourages small farmers in the region Capanema to make sure to plant conventional soybeans, is a guarantee for Vili and other producers of organic soybeans. 'Is it a good plant conventional soybeans only here in the region. The problem is we do not know how long", he notes. "I hope that the price of organic improve in the coming seasons, but we can not complain", he concludes.
Source: Agronotícias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Pesticides contaminate the population in Mato Grosso September, 19, 2010

September 19, 2010

Research Fiocruz / UFMT measured effect of pesticide use
- Government will increase monitoring of toxic waste products of plant origin

Survey conducted in two major grain-producing counties of Mato Grosso found residues of pesticides in blood and urine of residents on wells and rainwater samples collected in public schools.

The work, a partnership between the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation and UFMT (Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso), measured effects of pesticide use in Campo Verde and Lucas do Rio Verde (mid-north of Mato Grosso).
The water monitoring wells revealed that 32% of them contained residues of pesticides, also found in more than 40% of the samples of rainfall. Already 11% of air samples had residues of toxic chemicals such as
endosulfan, which had its ban recommended by its carcinogenic potential.

The study now examines the correlation between these data and records of poisonings, cancer, fetal malformation and neuropsychological disorders in the municipalities. "We know that the incidence of these problems is greatest where there is intensive use of these products", said Dr. Wanderley Pignati of UFMT.
According to the study, Mato Grosso turned out at the last harvest about 105 million liters of pesticides, 11% of Brazil's total. During the period, the cities surveyed harvested 2.5 million tons of soybeans and corn, 8% of the estimated state.

For Pignati, the data showed "lack of care." "There is talk about the safe use of pesticide only for the worker who applies. And the environment?"
Source: Rodrigo Vargas, Cuiabá, Folha de Sao Paulo

Government will increase monitoring of toxic waste products of plant origin

The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (Mapa) will expand the monitoring of the quality of plant products in relation to the levels of pesticide residues. In the season 2010/2011 were added six new products that will undergo analysis: garlic, soy, oranges, peppers, beans and coffee. The action was formalized through the Instruction 21, which was published on last 9th in the Official Gazette

The monitoring is part of National Plan for Control of Residues and Contaminants in Plant Products, which includes 25 crops from grains, fruits, nuts and vegetables: pineapple, lettuce, peanuts, rice, bananas, potatoes, the Brazil nut (Castanha do Pará), lemon, acid lime, apple, papaya, mango, melon, maize, strawberry, black pepper, tomato, wheat and grapes, besides the newly included.

In accordance with the Waste Control Service Area Mapa data, the programme collects 1525 samples of domestic and imported foods such as wheat, for example. Wheat is the main agricultural product imported by Brazil and accounts for almost half of internal necessity. The number of samples of imported products depends on the volume purchased by Brazil.

Food produced in the country are collected in processors establishments and in wholesale trade center, especially in the Society of General Warehouses of São Paulo (Ceagesp), a leading wholesale trade centers in the world. However, the samples of imported products are collected in customs.
Source: Christina Machado, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Vinicius Doria. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Meat: Russia promotes "embargoes lightning" September, 19, 2010

September, 19, 2010

Largest market for Brazilian beef abroad, Russia keep the exporters under pressure adopting a policy of frequent unstable "embargoes lightning" to meet their immediate interests.

The "opening and closing" Russian beef imports is focused on the recent process of concentration of food processors companies in Brazil. Government and Russian importers do not want to be hostage to two or three groups. The message is being passed on to the Brazilian authorities since mid-2009. The Russians insist on larger suppliers, but they want to choose the enterprises and their interlocutors.

The industries in Brazil occupy spaces of competitors, but the prices of meat have gone up because of high prices of cattle. Basically, the goal of Russia is to renegotiate prices. Therefore, the country uses excuses health and defers to send new mission to enable more processors. On Wednesday, announced the restriction on exports of JBS plant in Brazil, USA and Argentina.

"There are bureaucratic problems. Our system is still good," said Defense Secretary Agriculture, Ministry of Agriculture, Francisco Garden. "Well, Brazil is no longer a small actor, bother the competitors out there." For him, who embark to Moscow later this month, Russia will accept a new discussion of equivalence of sanitary rules.

All the major meat exporters in Brazil face any restrictions in Russia today. According to the Federal Service of Russian Veterinary Inspection, JBS has 18 units authorized to export to Russia. Of this total, 12 plants have "temporary restrictions, three suffer strengthening of control, which requires verification of all cargo received on Russian territory, and three are approved". Bertin, owned by JBS, has four plants approved. In the case of Marfrig are allowed 16 plants and three with temporary restrictions. Minerva has seven plants and only one empowered with this restriction. Contacted, the companies have not commented.
Source: Valor Econômico. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

MME wants to multiply by 15 the area of sugar cane for ethanol September, 19, 2010

September, 19, 2010

The Secretary of Oil and Gas of the Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME), Marco Antonio Almeida, defended last 13th the expansion of ethanol production in the country. He said the farmland area planted with sugarcane would rise from 0.5% of the country to 7.5%.

"Brazil produces ethanol in a sustainable way. Today we have the potential to produce 16 times more in the area, from 0.5% to 7.5% of cultivated territory", he said while participating in the International Exhibition of Oil and Gas, Rio de Janeiro.

To remember that the zoning of production prevents the planting of sugarcane in the Pantanal of Mato Grosso, the Amazon and in the Upper Paraguay, the secretary explained that increased ethanol production will not harm the food crops in country. "One study shows that are available to expand 12% of agriculture areas in Brazil, that are not used for grain production, are not for ethanol production, pastures and are not non-arable areas like cities and environmental reserves", he said.

According to the secretary, to stimulate the sector, the government plans to encourage the classification of the product as a commodity (commodity whose price is quoted in the international market), increasing the cultivation and encouraging consumption. This would avoid, he said, the lack of ethanol on the market. "Any problem we have, with the weather, for example, and we will have difficulty to meet international demands, which is not good. It is essential that several countries participate in the programme for ethanol", he argued.

Ministry plans also include increasing production of biodiesel in the country. The goal is to diversify fuel production, which is highly concentrated in soybeans, according to Almeida, and revise the percentage of biodiesel added to diesel oil.
Source: Isabela Vieira, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Vinicius Doria. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Task-force rescue workers on condition analogous to slavery in Rio and Minas Gerais states September, 19, 2010

September, 19, 2010

A task-force of the Regional Superintendent of Labour and Employment of Rio de Janeiro rescued 95 workers under analogous condition to slavery in Campos (RJ).

Inspectors found the farm workers of sugarcane with no record of working papers, drinking water or proper place for meals. They also had no protective equipment or access to sanitary facilities.

The workers were released in all, R$ 100 thousand in severance payments and for moral damages. Labour inspectors forwarded applications for unemployment insurance in the form "worker rescued".

In Minas Gerais, 51 rural workers were also rescued on strawberry cultivation in the rural municipality of Cambuí. Of the total, 39 were working on farms in conditions similar to slave and ten other worked in a warehouse selection, packaging and storage of strawberries, without a formal contract and no record in the book. Only two had formal record, but worked in precarious situations. Among the workers there were seven teenagers aged between 15 and 17 years working in night hours and without a minimum interval of one hour for rest or food.

According to the inspectors, workers were not wearing protective equipment needed and had no access to adequate sanitation facilities and local for dining. Moreover, they also had no drinking water or first aid materials in the work fronts. Workers manipulated pesticides without protection and training, and supplies were stored improperly.

The monitoring group closed the cultivation areas and the barn used for storage of products. The employer must pay R$ 248,000 in severance and moral damages pay to workers.
Source: Roberta Lopes, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Lily Beraldo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Greenpeace exposes deforestation in the farm of the Opportunity group September, 19, 2010

September, 19, 2010

Greenpeace held formal complaint to the Federal Public Ministry (MPF) of Pará, last week, on a new source of deforestation in the Xingu farm Eldorado, owned by Agropecuaria Santa Barbara, linked to the Opportunity group, controlled by the businessman Daniel Dantas. The information from satellite crossed with the government and the georeferenced images of rural property, showed deforestation of 450 hectares of forest between April and June this year.

In a statement, the company denied it had carried out illegal logging in the farm. But the JBS, the largest beef company in the world, reported that suspended purchases of beef from this property after disclosure of pictures by the government. "This farm is closed to us," said to Valor Econômico newspaper Angela Garcia, a spokesman for the company.

The food processor said that bought cattle from this property the last time on June 26, four days before the official release of the images. The company did not report the volume of meat from the Eldorado do Xingu.

Deforestation between April and June was appointed by Deter, monthly survey from the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), to expedite the enforcement actions of the environmental authorities. In Sao Felix do Xingu, where the property is condemned, the system showed aproximarmente 988 hectares of native forest destruction in the same period - Fazenda Eldorado do Xingu, therefore, accounted for almost half the area.

After cross-checking, Greenpeace held a overflight field verification - to confirm that it was, in fact, deforestation. The NGO reported hundreds of fallen trees, forming an effect "toothpick holder" of fallen logs seen in the sky. According to Marcio Astrini, from the "Amazon campaign" of Greenpeace is an indicator that the fire will be held later this year for planting grass.

Although denying the deforestation, Agropecuaria Santa Barbara says that "has failed to prevent attackers commit atrocities, kill livestock, destroy plants, causing fires and illegal logging, creating events such as the one reported". The company says further that the complaint "appears to be more ruthless deployment of a smear campaign sponsored by international organizations against the Brazilian cattle industry and particularly the producers of Pará, with the aim of tarnishing the image of the entire national agribusiness". With 118,000 hectares, the farm has been fined in the past by IBAMA.

For Greenpeace, the event shows the vulnerability of Brazilian consumers about the meat it consumes. This is because the Eldorado do Xingu also sells to medium and small processors which did not signed the agreement for zero deforestation in Amazonia, signed in 2009 between MPF, Greenpeace and large processors. If there is not pressure, the meat will continue to get illegal for retailers. "We're eating this smoke," says Astrini.
Source: Bettina Barros, Valor Econômico. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian government restricts land purchases by foreigners August 25, 2010

August 25, 2010
Source: Lúcio Vaz, reporter for Correio Braziliense

It was published on 23 pp. in the Official Federal Gazette (Diário Oficial da União), an decision of President Luiz Inacio da Silva approving the new judgement of the Attorney General of the Union (AGU) in favour of a greater control over land acquisition by foreigners in the country.

Based on data from the National Institute of Colonization and Agrarian Reform (INCRA), the AGU recognized that the Brazilian government had lost effective control over the purchase and lease of the country’s land. The decision treats the Brazilian companies whose majority stake is held by non-residents or foreign companies in the same way as the not authorized to operate in Brazil.

The lack of control of these acquisitions have generated overvaluation of land prices, the expansion of the agricultural frontier in environmental protection areas, increased land grabbing and illegal sale of public land, acquisition of properties in the country frontiers, putting in risk to national security, and practices such as money laundering and drug trafficking.

The AGU clarifies that the new approach on the subject arose from the food crisis in the world and the possibility of adoption, large-scale biofuel as an important alternative source of energy. The analyse was prepared by consultant general's office, Ronaldo Vieira Jr., and sent to President Luiz Inacio da Silva by the Advocate General of the Union, Luis Inacio Adams.

The opinion reviews the rules defined by the AGU in 1998, yet the government of Fernando Henrique Cardoso, interpreting the federal Constitution of 1988. There were doubts about the application of restrictions and limits on individuals and foreign companies under Law No. 5.709/1971. The question was restricted to the comparison between Brazilian companies controlled by foreign capital to foreign companies. In the opinion signed by general counsel, "after 14 years, the new global economic context required a repositioning of the federal government on the issue."

Vieira Júnior quote the pronouncement of the President of INCRA, Rolf Hackbart, at a public hearing of the committees on Agriculture, Land Reform, Consumer Protection and Monitoring of the Senate in March 2008. For Hackbart, the current system allowed the "rampant occupation of land by foreigners at the national level, masked legally, on the grounds of being acquired by Brazilian companies. In addition, the registered services (notaries) feel they do not need to communicate the relationship of these acquisitions to the Minister of Justice and Internal Affairs and to INCRA.

"Legal uncertainty"

The AGU had signed favorable opinion of the review in 2008, but appeared contrary pressures inside and outside government. That year, the Brazilian Association of Pulp and Paper (Bracelpa) sent a letter to the then chief minister, Dilma Rousseff, externalizing concern about the possible revision of opinion by the AGU. This fact could "bring legal uncertainty for foreign investors, especially those who work in the pulp and paper." The series of mail showed that the pulp mill Veracel, an association between the multinational Swedish-Finnish Stora Enso and Brazilian Fibria, bought around 200,000 hectares (ha) in Bahia to plant eucalyptus. In Rio Grande do Sul, Stora Enso bought 46,000 ha along the border with Uruguay and Argentina.

The pressures and the global economic crisis of 2008 prompted the government to postpone the decision on the revision of opinion. This year, a working group formed by federal prosecutors urged the government to change the text. The National Justice Council (CNJ) was instructed to require the notary to pass the report to the relationship Incra properties by Brazilian companies with foreign capital. Last month, the CNJ made the determination to register offices across the country.

By the law of the country, the purchase of land by foreigners is restricted to clear-cut boundaries. As of 50 modules operating (MEIS), the acquisition must be approved by Congress. Considering the maximum modulus, with 100 hectares, this limit would be five thousand hectares. However, there are considered national companies in Brazil, but with foreign capital, as owners of areas up to 200,000 hectares.

A series of articles "Foreign Lands", published in the Correio Braziliense from June 9, denounced the lack of information and the consequent lack of government control on property purchases by foreigners, registering the disorderly and disguised in Minas Gerais, Bahia in Rio Grande do Sul and Mato Grosso. In the Northeast, the reports showed the aggressive occupation of Ceará by tourism megaprojects, with the invasion of wilderness areas and lands claimed by indigenous communities with financial assistance from the state government.

Occupations scattered throughout the country

Correio Braziliense reported on June 9, the lack of government control on land acquisition by foreigners in the country. A series of articles visited registries in several states and has shown that multinationals create Brazilian companies to register their land. About 4.3 million hectares are officially in the hands of these companies, but this would only represent one fifth of foreign occupation. The land registry established by Incra is incomplete, but identifying the regions of greatest interest of multinationals.

Most are not on Amazon, but in the most productive lands of the Midwest and Southeast, especially in Mato Grosso. Asian companies, Arab, European and American investing primarily in the production of grain, sugar cane and cotton, and eucalyptus for the pulp industry. The competition with international capital already raised the price of land at 300% in some regions in the Midwest. In Mato Grosso, the agricompany “O Telhar”, with Argentine capital, occupies 180,000 hectares of land to grow soybeans, corn and cotton. The company was denounced by the Ministry of Labor for allegedly keeping its employees in working conditions similar to slavery.

In southern Bahia, Veracel pulp company acquired approximately 200,000 hectares to plant eucalyptus and establish forest reserves. In Unai (MG) in the surrounding areas of the Federal District, an American multinational Agroreservas bought the farm with 29 ha, using a Brazilian subsidiary. In the office of the county, the farm is not registered in the book of land to foreigners. In Rio Grande do Sul, the Swedish-Finnish Stora Enso (which has a 50% stake in Veracel) purchased 46,000 hectares in the boundary zone to plant eucalyptus, with approval of the Council of National Defense (CND), which was based on old opinion of the AGU.

The aforementioned series of news also showed the deployment of foreign tourist megaprojects in Ceará, with the support of state government. Registries and the Board of Trade of the state, the enterprises are registered in the name of Brazilian companies. (LV)

Consequences of uncontrolled foreign purchase of land in Brazil:

See the items published in the Official Federal Gazette yesterday on the problems caused by the acquisition of land by foreigners in Brazil:
"- Expansion of agricultural frontier in the advancement of farming in protected areas and conservation areas;
- Recovery of unjustified price of land and impact of property speculation, generating rising cost of expropriation for land reform;
- Growth of the illegal sale of public lands;
- Using funds from money laundering, drug trafficking and prostitution in the acquisition of such land;
- Increased land grabbing;
- Proliferation of false buyers in the acquisition of these properties;
- Increasing numbers relating to biopiracy in the Amazon region;
- Expansion without regulation of the production of ethanol and biodiesel;
- Acquisition of land in border areas, endangering national security.”

How is it in other countries

Learn how operate the laws that deal with the subject in two countries of North America:

United States

By federal law, the foreigner is obliged to report the acquisition of lands to Secretary of Agriculture of each federal unit. In New York, for example, the alien must become a naturalized citizen to own rural property. Virginia allows only possession - not ownership - to the foreigner who is resident for more than five years. In Iowa, the land earmarked for agriculture can not be traded freely, the land for agricultural production may not belong to persons not resident in the state. In Missouri, the agricultural land can not belong to foreigners. If people from other countries will be owners of agricultural land, the state gives a period of two years so that the properties are traded. Otherwise, go to public auction.


In this country there are also significant restrictions. It is the forbidden domain of foreigners in the border and the sea. In other areas, urban or rural, foreigners need permission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to acquire properties. Mexican companies with foreign capital may acquire land, but are legal restrictions of the maximum purchase area.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Slave labor could threaten exports from Brazil August 25, 2010

August 25, 2010

During the course of “Slave Labour - Labour and Criminal Aspects”, yesterday (25), in Brasilia, the minister of Ministry of Human Rights, Paulo Vannuchi, noted that slave labor in the country is an issue that goes beyond human rights and reflects on the economy , threatening the exports. The minister also said that the solution of the problem is one of his "personal frustration" at the office.

"Brazil runs the risk of having problems at the World Trade Organization (WTO) countries because competitors can take pictures and evidence of the use of slave labor in the production of soybeans, for example."

He also stressed the importance of the adoption of the Proposed Amendment to the Constitution (PEC) 438 for the eradication of slave labor in the country. The PEC provides for the expropriation and allocation for land reform in all farms where workers are caught in conditions analogous to slavery.

The present lawyers also defended the approval of other proposals in Congress, as Bill 207/2006 prohibiting the granting of credit and participation in auctions of government business of persons and enterprises that exposes workers to degrading situations.

For Judge Luciano Athayde Chaves, president of the National Association of Magistrates of the Labor Court, we must go beyond changes in the law and pay attention to new forms of exploitation, which also occur in urban centers. He believes the state should provide support on several fronts to solve the problem. "Unlocking the employee without offering compensation through pedagogical activities and allocating resources for moral damages in class actions is ordered released to return to the former condition."

According to the president of the National Union of Independent Audit of Labour, Rosangela Rassy, ethanol production is changing the places where workers are subjected to conditions of forced labor. "In 2009, the Southeast was the champion in assessments and rescue and also increased in the South," she said.

Source: Agência Brazil; Edition: Talita Cavalcante. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Agribusiness default falls and BB expands operations August 25, 2010

August 25, 2010

Director of Agribusiness at the Bank of Brazil, José Carlos Vaz, said last Tuesday (24) that default in the operations of rural credit is falling and has reached the historical level of 2% observed before the crisis the industry faced between seasons 2004 / 2005 and 2005/2006. "Of the $ 70 billion that we've applied in the industry, default at the end of June this year was 2.3%, while last December and was 3.3% in September, 3.8%. This represents a net reduction in bad debt."

According to Vaz, the R$ 70 billion the bank has applied in the industry, only R$ 10 billion were hired before 2007, when Brazilian agriculture began his recovery, were extended for payment difficulties on the part of producers. "If we take only the $ 60 billion, the default rate was 1.8% at the end of June this year from 2% in December [2009] and 2.2% in September."

The crisis that hit the sector before 2007 was, in large part due to the currency exchange rate. Farmers planted the 2004/05 season with high costs tied to the dollar (at the time quoted at R$ 3.10) while the trade took place with low prices and unfavorable exchange rate (dollar quoted at R$ 2.60). In the 2005/06 season, the problem was repeated, with the dollar at R$ 2.50 during the planting and between R$ 2.06 and R$ 2.20 at the time of sale.

To reduce the increasing defaults, the bank is investing in mechanisms of protection for the producer. In addition to insurance against climatic problems, the Bank of Brazil should expand its activities in trading future, in which farmers pay a fee to guarantee the marketing of the crop at a predetermined price.
Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Vinicius Doria. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Country earned U.S. $ 57.9 billion since 2006 with the increased price of exports August 25, 2010

August 25, 2010

The rise in prices of products exported by Brazil and lower prices of imports to the country generated gains equivalent to U.S. $ 57.9 billion (equivalent to R$ 115.2 billion) between January 2006 and June 2010, according to a study prepared by the Department Research and Economic Studies of Bradesco Bank (Depec).

This amounts to about ten times the size of the Bolsa Familia, the federal government programme that help financially poor people, and represents approximately 28% of all growth in international reserves accumulated by Brazil since 2006 through the first half of this year.

Between January 2006 and June 2010, the price of total exports of the country was up 54.3%, while imports showed an increase of 28.4%. Among the segments of the export, the commodity price appreciation accumulates in the period up 68.9%, benefiting from the high increases of iron ore. Already with imports, the biggest price increases were recorded in the segment of fuels and derivatives, an increase of 52.9%, and of nondurable consumer goods, which showed an increase of 50.3% in the period.

According to the study of Depec, the accumulated gain in four and a half years, equivalent to 4.3% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Brazil, was possible mainly by the current profile of the global economy. "The robust growth of emerging economies have sustained prices of Brazilian exports. Developed economies are already high with idle capacity and difficulty of expanding margins, resulting in a depressed prices on imports for Brazil, "cites the report.
Source: Último Segundo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

BB wants to increase by 20% funds invested in this year's harvest August 25, 2010

August 25, 2010

The Banco do Brazil expects to apply about R$ 42 billion in rural credit operations in the 2010/2011 season. The figure represents an increase of 20.7% compared to the 2009/2010 harvest, when they invested R$34.7 billion.

Vice President of Agribusiness of the Bank of Brazil Luis Carlos Guedes Pinto said Tuesday (24) that until the first fortnight of August they have already applied R$ 2.5 billion, up 11.6% over the same period the previous harvest. "If the demand is greatest, we mean that we have the resources to meet it," he said during a press conference to take stock of the applications in the last harvest and prospects for the current.

The R$ 34.7 billion released in rural credit in the 2009/2010 harvest represented an increase of 14.2% over the 2008/2009 crop. The family farm was granted with loans of R$ 8.7 billion, while other producers and rural cooperatives hired R$ 26 billion.

These resources, R$ 21.6 billion for operations were costing the equivalent of 62.3% of the total. The operations accounted for costing U.S. $ 7.3 billion, an increase of 39.2% over the 2008/2009 crop.

Source: Danilo Macedo, reporter of Agência Brasil; edition: Lily Beraldo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Russia's grain harvest fell by 38% so far August 25, 2010

August 25, 2010

Russia has enough grain to meet the local demand, even after the harvest has fallen by 38 percent in 2010, said a senior official on Monday morning (23). However, these data indicate that the former exporter must import millions of tons.

Russia, already the third largest wheat exporter in the world, was hit by a severe drought in many producing regions, destroying large areas of crops and raising the question of imports.

Analysts estimated the Russian imports 1.5 to 2 million tons, while a report in the Vedomosti newspaper showed that Russia may import at least 5 million tons. Rumor that a spokesman of the Ministry of Agriculture quickly denied.

Deputy Agriculture Minister Alexander Petrikov, said Russia harvested 40.3 million tons of grain (weight) until August 19. He said that the grains were harvested at 19.3 million hectares, or 48 percent of the planted area. The yield fell to 2.08 tonnes per hectare compared to 2.69 tonnes per hectare on August 2009.

The gross weight is usually 7-8 per cent higher than the volume after the beans are cleaned, but this difference may be smaller in warmer years and dry like this. The final yield is calculated based on the volume clean.

Petrikov said that Russia has enough grain to meet local demand. "The domestic needs of Russia are 77 million tonne," said Petrikov. 'The stocks of some 23 million tons and reserves of government intervention to 9.5 million tons, will be more than enough to cover the needs."

Petrikov ministry confirmed the prediction of 65 million to 67 million tons for the harvest of 2010 in an optimistic scenario and 60 million tonnes in a more pessimistic view.

However, stocks of passage of the country, which has previously been estimated by official statistics agency Rosstat at 21.7 million tons, already include 9.5 million tonnes of reserves of government intervention.
Source: Reuters. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Putin decrees embargo on Russian grains exports August 10, 2010

August 10, 2010

Strong drought undermines Russian harvest

The prime minister of Russia, Vladimir Putin announced on August 5 suspension of grain exports from the 15th of this month until the end of year because of drought and fires that are affecting the producing areas of the country. Russia is among the largest global suppliers of wheat, rye and barley, and in 2009 exported about 25% of its grain production.

Some estimates indicate that the heat wave and fires of the last five weeks, the largest of the decade, will reduce harvest in Russia this year by 30%. At least 50 people have died in forest fires. The justification given by the Russian government to suspend exports is the need to maintain the supply and food prices stable for the population.

The area affected by fires in the country is nearly 200,000 hectares and the government has promised to allocate $ 1.2 billion for farmers affected by drought. In the Russian capital Moscow, the temperature is around 40 degrees Celsius (40ºC).

With this announcement, the price of wheat reached the highest price in 23 months. For Brazil, the high price is good, because domestic producers should become less dependent on government support for commercialization. However, as half of the consumption is imported from other countries, the cereal will be more expensive.

Technicians from the Ministry of Agriculture believe that the drop in grain production in Russia may open space for Brazil to access markets hitherto supplied by that country.
Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Nadia Franco. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian grain harvest this year should exceed the previous by 9.2% August 10, 2010

August 10, 2010

Brazil's harvest of cereals, pulses and oilseeds is expected to reach 146.4 million tonnes in 2010, resulting in record time series of national production, said on Thursday evening, August 5, the Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE ).

According to the seventh estimate of Systematic Survey of Agricultural Production (LASP), the harvest should be 9.2% higher than that obtained in 2009 (134.0 million tons). The projection exceeds 0.3% of the previous survey, released in June (145.9 million tons).

The planted area of the three main crops - soybeans, corn and rice, which account for 83.1% of the total - should vary from 7.2% -6.5% and -5.9% respectively, compared to previous year. The yield corn and soybean should provide expansion of 4.4% and 19.8% respectively, and the rice should have shrinkage of 10.3%. The grains represent 90.9% of total production.

Of the five regions of the country, the South should produce the largest volume of grain: 63.1 million tons. The Midwest should respond for 50.9 million tons, followed by the Southeast, with 16.5 million, the Northeast, with 12 million, and North, with 3.9 million.

According to the IBGE, only the Southeast should record drop in production (-4%). The Northern Region shall provide an increase of 1.7%, the Northeast, 2.3%; the South, 20.3% and the Midwest, 4.3%.

The National Supply Company (Conab) also announced today in Brasília, a survey of the grain harvest. According to the state, must be collected 147.1 million tonnes in 2009/2010 crop.

The difference between the data published by IBGE and Conab is due to periods. IBGE analyzes the harvest from January to December, while Conab is based on crop year, which runs from August to July.
Source: Flavia Villela, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Juliana Andrade. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Ranchers complain about environmental demands made by meat processors August 10, 2010

August 10, 2010

Farmers of Mato Grosso say they will not accept "abuse."

Mato Grosso has the largest cattle herd in the country: 27.3 million head.

Pressured to prove that they comply with environmental legislation, ranchers in Mato Grosso reacted against the largest meat processors in Brazil.

In an open letter to the groups Marfrig and JBS-Friboi, the Acrimat (Breeders Association of Mato Grosso) said the sector suffers from threats, but will not accept "abuses" and "restraint of trade."

Since it signed agreements with the Federal Prosecutor in Pará and Mato Grosso, the two companies began to require its suppliers to prove the legal origin of the cattle.

The objective here is to block the expansion of deforestation and the use of protected areas and indigenous reserves for the breeding of cattle.

For Acrimat, however, the requirements "reverse the burden of proof" and are "a way to manipulate the relationship with the farmer."

"We, the producers, have no connection with the agreements signed with the Federal Public Ministry and NGOs are no witnesses nor responsible for signing such pacts."

The farmers have criticized the meat processors, which require the submission of documents "as if they were responsible for supervision and law enforcement. Marfrig and JBS-Friboi put the farmers in the common grave of squatters from land, who live outside the law. We are not transgressors."

In a statement, the JBS-Friboi said that "sustainability is a core value" and that account has a control on the purchase of cattle according to socio-environmental legislation.

Marfrig group said it promotes good environmental practices and that "reserves the right to purchase raw material suppliers aligned" with that requirement.
Source: Rodrigo Vargas, Agência Folha, Cuiabá. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian agribusiness grows 6% in first half August 10, 2010

August 10, 2010

In the first half of 2010, the Brazilian agribusiness grew 6%, much higher than the result obtained in the same period in 2009 (-5.3%), although below the general industry average reported (16.2%). The sectors linked to agriculture (4.4%), the largest weight in agribusiness, showed similar performance to industries related to livestock (4.3%). The group insecticides, herbicides and other pesticides for agricultural use increased by 34.1% and the wood segment, 23.8%.

The 6% growth of agro-industrial production is due to record crop being harvested in 2010, the moderate increase in export volume and prices of some commodities and recovery in the manufacturing of agricultural machinery and equipment. Another highlight is the low base of comparison in the first half of last year, due to the effects of international economic crisis occurred in late 2008, which caused a drop in exports and international prices. The positive scenario for the agricultural industry and increase farm income boosted investments in the sector, reflected mainly in the advances made in agricultural machinery and equipment (50%) in fertilizers (3.1%) and agricultural pesticides (34.1 %).

Regarding the external sector, according to the Foreign Trade Secretariat (SECEX), the export volume of major products of agribusiness made the following changes compared to the first half of 2009: hides and skins of bovine (17.1% ), cellulose (8.3%), frozen beef (5.3%), poultry not cut in pieces (2.5%), sugar (0.9%), bagasse and other waste from the extraction of soybean oil (0.9%) and cuts and offal of poultry (0%). On the other hand, exports registered a decline of ethanol (-54.2%), tobacco (-24.7%), crude soybean oil (-13.5%) and soybeans crushed (-4.2% ).

Industrial products derived from agriculture

The sector of industrial products derived from agriculture grew 2.6% in the first half of 2010, with positive results in five of eight sub-sectors surveyed. The increase derived from cane sugar (15.7%) was explained by both an increase in sugar production (20.1%) and in ethanol (11.9%), driven mainly by growth in domestic market due to the expansion of the fleet of flex-fuel vehicles. Further positive contributions came from soy products (2.8%) and wheat (1.5%), both driven by the growth of the crop; orange (35.7%) and cellulose (2.7%). Conversely, the negative results came from rice (-7.6%), with a reduction in harvest due to excessive rainfall in Rio Grande do Sul, the largest producing state, tobacco (-11.2%) and corn (- 4.5%).

Industrial products derived from livestock

The sector of industrial products derived from livestock advanced 3.4% in the first six months of this year. This group, those derived from poultry increased by 4.6%, supported mainly domestic and some recovery in exports. Derivatives of cattle and swine fell 0.9%. Milk production, product predominantly directed to the internal market grew 5%, while the leather expanded by 14.8%, influenced largely by exports.
Source: IBGE, with AgribusinessWatch. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Bitter strawberry: 46 workers were rescued in Minas Gerais in conditions similar to slave August 10, 2010

August 10, 2010

Workers were at risk of serious and imminent. Severance payments totaled about R$ 246,000

Two fiscal actions of the Regional Labour and Employment in Minas Gerais (SRTE/MG) resulted in the rescue of 46 workers in three counties in southern Minas Gerais.

The operations were performed in the first week of July in strawberry-growing areas in the rural areas of Estiva, Itapeva and Senador Amaral, southern state, leading producer of strawberries in the country.

According to the coordinator of the accions, the tax audit of Labour, Valeria Guerra Mendes, the major deficiencies found were: poor housing: a part of the group lived in tents of canvas supported by wooden planks and logs, beds covered with thinness pieces of foam; lack of potable water; bad storage, handling and application of pesticides, no provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), maintenance of three minors of 14, 16 and 17 years in unsanitary and dangerous services; absence of place for meals; lack of employment contract and serious and imminent risks.

"In this situation, the workers were subjected to degrading working conditions, characterizing conditions analogous to slavery", says Mendes.
Source: SRTE / MG, with the AgribusinessWatch. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture highlights importance of the Low Carbon Farming August 10, 2010

August 10, 2010

The harmony between agriculture and the environment was highlighted by the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture, Gerardo Fontelles, during opening of the 9th Congress of the Brazilian Agribusiness, yesterday, August 9 in São Paulo. "The ministry is working with a focus on sustainability. We will increase production, supply the domestic market, export more, boosting the income of farmers and keeping the environment healthy", he said.

Fontelles mentioned the Low Carbon Programme Agriculture (ABC), launched in June during the announcement of the Agricultural and Livestock Plan 2010/2011 as flagship of the government to encourage the use of techniques that increase efficiency in farming and reduce the emission from called greenhouse gases. In this first year, farmers have R$ 2 billion with interest of 5.5% per year.

Opening the event, agribusiness leaders and government representatives pointed to the central challenges of the sector in the coming years as income support from production, more investment in infrastructure, innovation, research and opening new markets. "We never had such clarity of the immense potential of agriculture and its challenges to make them reality. We have knowledge and competent to do so, but we need integration between the entities representing the sector", said the vice-president of Agribusiness of the Bank of Brazil, Luis Carlos Guedes.
Source: Laila Muniz, Social Communications Department of the Mapa, with the AgribusinessWatch. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

WTO: trade in natural resources represented 24% of world trade in goods in 2008 July 23, 2010

July 23, 2010

World trade will grow 10% in 2010 In 2008, trade in natural resources represented 3.7 trillion, or 24% of world trade in goods. This figure increased six-fold between 1998 and 2008.
World trade will increase 10% in 2010, having been reduced by 12% last year, said on Friday in Shanghai, the director general of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Pascal Lamy, in presenting annual report of the institution. "Our forecast for global trade this year is 10% by volume, after -12% in 2009," said Lamy. The WTO has raised its forecast for the figure early in March (9.5%). According to the WTO in 2009 was an unprecedented drop in turnover since the Second World War, through the fault of the economic crisis, which strongly affected the demand. "The growth of trade records a rapid return, mainly thanks to the continuing dynamism of China and other countries," said Lamy, in a second speech at the Institute for International Trade in Shanghai. In this sense, Lamy estimated that, unless bad surprises, the projection of a growth of 10% "may even be too conservative." In his report, the WTO encourages States to strengthen their cooperation in the area of international trade in natural resources, warning of possible new tensions otherwise. "I think not only that you can find in the negotiations, commitments mutually beneficial, covering trade in natural resources, but also that the fact of not addressing these issues would be a source of growing tension in international trade relations," Lamy said in the report . Natural resources Russia is the world's leading exporter of natural resources, with a market share of 9.1% in 2008, particularly thanks to the soaring fuel prices. Saudi Arabia ranked second with 7.6%. Side of the importers, the U.S. tops the list when buying 15.2% of natural resources for sale in 2008, followed by Japan (9.1%) and China (8.6%). But against the character of certain non-renewable raw materials, countries rich in natural resources often limit exports through taxation or quantitative restrictions, points to the WTO. Those tariffs on exports relate to 11% of trade in natural resources compared to 5% of other products, the report said. These measures have detrimental effects for other countries to influence world prices and affect the benefits between importers and exporters, regrets the WTO, which recommends taking measures to promote the conservation of these raw materials. Lamy indicated that his conclusion that "will not surprise anyone," is that things will improve in this aspect "if we can quickly close the Doha Round." The Doha Round, which should result in further liberalization of international trade by reducing customs duties on thousands of products, was launched in Qatar in 2001, but so far all the meetings to complete it resulted in failure.
Source: AFP . Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Three Brazilian largest meat processors suspend purchases of 221 farms July 23, 2010

July 23, 2010

Greenpeace said that the three largest meat processors in Brazil, JBS / Bertin, Marfrig and Minerva, suspended the purchase of cattle from 221 farms located within indigenous lands, protected areas or areas close to newly deforested in the Amazon. 1,787 other properties within a radius of up to 10 km of new deforestation, conservation units and indigenous lands, they undergo investigation. The companies have also stated georeferenced point of more than 12,500 farms, a number that, according to them, representing 100% of supply chain direct from the region.
"The presentation of these numbers is a clear and welcome sign that the industry is eyeing the new demands of consumers worry about the environment around the world. Companies now need to expand and consolidate this work, conducting audits of processes, ensuring transparency and reliability of data and persuading its suppliers to make available geo-referenced maps with the boundaries of the properties", said Paulo Adario, director of Greenpeace's Amazon campaign.
Only the list of suppliers of JBS, according to the company, 31 were excluded because they are in conservation and/or Indian lands, while 1,491 others are being verified as being less than 10 km of new areas of deforestation, conservation units and indigenous lands. "These units are on alert in check temporarily suspended the registration of JBS", the company said in a statement. About 9,813 data from the Amazon biome properties vendors were collected to date.
Already Marfrig Foods, according to Greenpeace, mapped 2,000 properties and suspended the purchase of cattle from 170 farms in the region, while Minerva excluded from its list 20 providers without informing, however, how many units were surveyed. "Each company has a procedure, we are trying to standardize. Minerva, for example, does not make the verification in the field. But the important thing is that we take effective measures to combat deforestation," said the coordinator of Greenpeace.
Source: Agricultural News. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

JBS creates monitoring for comrpa cattle also in Mato Grosso The meat processor JBS Friboi reported that created a monitoring system in the region of the Amazon biome and preservation of indigenous areas and conservation units (UC) through satellite imagery. The system will contribute to the sustainable management of purchasing cattle company's suppliers, in line with the agreement between the processors and Greenpeace (signed in October last year) to combat deforestation in the region.
According to a statement of the company, was established a system for tracking cargo type GPS /GPRS at 170 trucks cowboys who work in the states of Mato Grosso, Pará, Rondônia and Acre to collect coordinates in corrals boarding of animals. 300 instruments were purchased to enable GPS tracking. Information collected at the time of boarding the cattle are entered in the database of JBS and forwarded to Apoio Consulting, which specializes in Remote Sensing and georeferencing for deployment and operation of the Monitoring Program of the Amazon biome of the company.
The data of the properties, consist of the owner's name and social security numbers and the name of the farm, production area and location and geographic coordinates of the stall boarding of animals, are analyzed by the cartographic base fitted with satellite imagery, maps of conservation areas federal, state and local, indigenous lands and the National Institute for Space Research (INPE).
So far, JBS could get data of 9,813 properties in the Amazon forest. Have been excluded from 31 suppliers registered with the company by being in conservation areas and / or indigenous and other 1,491 are being verified as being less than 10 km of the boundaries of the polygons of conservation units and indigenous land and 10 km limits the polygons of the areas where the degradation process.
- These units are on alert in check temporarily suspended the registration of JBS and are being evaluated by the Apoio Consulting - the company said in a statement.
Source: Canal Rural

Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

BNDES will invest up to $ 2.5 billion in Marfrig July 23, 2010

July 23, 2010

Bank purchases debt securities of the company

BNDES (Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Económico e Social) has committed to invest up to R$ 2.5 billion in the meat processor Marfrig with purchase of bonds (debt securities).

The bonds may be converted into shares. The bank is already a shareholder of the company, with a stake of 13.89%. According to the enterprise, the results will be used in acquisition of Keystone Foods American and Irish O'Kane Poultry.

"The operation is positive because Keystone has distribution channels in Asia, which strengthens the internationalization," said Rafael Cintra, an analyst with Link Investments. The acquisition price is U.S. $ 1.26 billion.

Since 2007, when it began the process of industry consolidation, the bank has invested, through BNDESPar (the arm of the bank's stakes in companies), R$ 9.7 billion in meat processors companies - nearly 87% of the bank's direct operations with the sector. In total, BNDES has earmarked more than $ 14 billion to stores until May.

The president of the Brazilian Association of Meat Processors, Pericles Salazar, says the bank does not offer the same treatment for small businesses. "The internationalization of large firms is positive, but we must encourage small and medium-sized," he said.
Source: Folha de São Paulo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian scientists criticize changes in Forest Code July 23, 2010

July 23, 2010

Currently in the National Congress, the proposed revision of the Brazilian Forest Code does not like scientists, who have joined against by drafting a letter published in the July 16 edition of the journal Science.

The text is signed by researchers connected to the Biota Programme of the Foundation for Research Support of São Paulo (FAPESP-Biota): Luiz Antonio Martinelli of the Center for Nuclear Energy in Agriculture (Cena / USP), located in Piracicaba (SP) Jean Paul Metzger, the Institute of Biosciences, University of São Paulo (USP), Thomas Lewinsohn, Department of Animal Biology, State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Ricardo Ribeiro Rodrigues, Department of Biological Sciences, Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALQ), USP, and Carlos Alfredo Joly, Institute of Biology, UNICAMP.

The main argument is that the proposed code did not have effective participation of researchers and their approval would bring irreparable damage to the environment.

To Luiz Antonio Martinelli, a researcher at Cena/USP, the Forestry Code, created in 1965, has points that need revision, especially with regard to small farmers, whose properties are possibly too small to accommodate the presence of APPs (areas of permanet protection) and RL (legal reserve).

"But whatever the reformulation, it must have a sound scientific basis. That was the biggest failure of the proposed amendment, which aimed to destroy specific political 'obstacles' to environmental agricultural expansion at any cost," said Martinelli to Agency FAPESP.

He said the central argument of the proposed reform was built from a "scientifically incorrect report commissioned by the Ministry of Agriculture directly to a researcher engaged in a Brazilian research institution."

"The report concluded that there was sufficient area for agricultural expansion in the country, if environmental regulations were enforced to the letter. The document, however, was produced so wrong that some researchers involved in the development refused to sign it, "he noted.

The main argument for reform, according to the researcher, based on the assertion that there is a bottleneck in the expansion of agricultural land, supposedly blocked by APPs and RL. For the proponents of change, these mechanisms for environmental protection make the current laws too strict, blocking the advance of agribusiness. This lock, however, does not exist, he says. "The fallacy of this argument has been scientifically dismantled."

Martinelli cites a study coordinated by Sparovek Gerd (to read this study, in Portuguese, go to Documents and download “Considerações sobre o Código Forestal brasileiro”), a researcher at ESALQ (USP), which used remote sensing to conclude that the cultivated area in Brazil could be almost doubled if the areas now occupied by low productivity of livestock are relocated to the agricultural crop.

"Improving the efficiency of livestock in other areas by means of techniques already known, there is no need to move forward on the natural vegetation protected by the Forest today," he said.

For the researcher of Cena/USP, most of the proposed reformulation has the sole purpose of increasing the agricultural area at low cost. "The most paradoxical is that the changes benefit a lot more owners of large tracts of land than small producers", he said.

Martinelli did not believe that changes in the Forest Code could benefit the development of food production in Brazil. He said if there was real concern with food production, the government should expand and facilitate credit to small producers, invest in infrastructure - like roads and storage - to help the marketing of these products and, especially, to invest heavily in research to benefit these cultures in order to increase their productivity.
Source: Agronotícias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Multinational companies should maintain quality standards in all countries July 23, 2010

July 23, 2010

São Paulo - The vice president of Instituto Ethos, Paulo Itacarambi, argues that transnational corporations in developing countries have to maintain the same quality standard of their nations of origin. He said sometimes these companies seek competitive advantages at the expense of societies where laws are more flexible.

"The central issue is the company have a unique pattern in any country that is" Itacarambi said. "Where the law allows, it has a standard which does not, she has another," asked to attend the Latin American Conference on Corporate Responsibility in the Promotion of Integrity and Combating Corruption.

As an example, he mentioned that some types of pesticides have been banned in several countries, but in Brazil the production companies are pushing for its use is not prohibited. "If the product is being banned in 60 countries, such as some pesticides, problems exist. If there are problems that cause damage to health, a company that is responsible to society should not take the initiative to put [the product] market, "he said.

According Itacarambi, such practices, despite being within the law, they can cause damage to society. "Companies that are responsible to society should use the precautionary principle."

According to him, such attitudes do not occur without the connivance on the part of local society. "It has the responsibility of companies that sell food, which must verify that these products are contaminated. Has the farmer uses. That responsibility is in the chain. "

To resolve such situations, Itacarambi also advocates a stronger foothold in the consumer, by refusing to buy such products with high levels of pesticides, and trade, which should also refuse to sell them.
Source: Daniel Mello, reporter of Agency Brazil; edition: Joao Carlos Rodrigues. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Pampa biome has lost more than half of the original vegetation July 23, 2010

July 23, 2010
Brasilia - The Pampa biome, which occupies most of Rio Grande do Sul, has lost nearly 54% of the original vegetation. The most recent data from deforestation in the Amazon forest, released yesterday (22) by the Ministry of Environment show that between 2002 and 2008 2183 km² of native coverage were overthrown. In total, the biome has lost more than 95,000 km² of the original vegetation.
The survey was conducted by the Center for Environmental Monitoring of the Brazilian Institute of Environment and Natural Resources (IBAMA).
Despite the large percentage deforested, the rate of devastation of the Pampa is the smallest among the Brazilian biomes. According to data from the MMA, the region lost annually, on average, 364 square kilometers of vegetation in the last six years. In the Cerrado, the annual rate of deforestation is 14,000 square kilometers per year in the Amazon, the overthrow reaches 18,000 km ² of forest annually.
Source: Luana Lorenzo, reporter Agency Brazil. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

4.3 mi ha of Brazilian agricultural land belongs to foreigners July 7, 2010

July 7, 2010

In Brazil, 4.3 million hectares were bought by foreigners and are distributed between 3,694 municipalities located in most of the time in the Midwest and Southeast. The total shows the fragility of the Brazilian system, which has no limitations regarding the occupation of land in the country.

Among the states of the federation, Mato Grosso is the one with highest concentration of land by owners from abroad. An area of 844 000 hectares is under foreign domination, whether by groups or international corporations and farmers, among others. In most cases, the foreign capital is intended to support activities related to agribusiness, such as grain production (soybeans, corn and other), cane sugar, cotton.

This means that, over time, interest in the territory of Mato Grosso and the introduction of increased capital from other countries has resulted in a competition with domestic producers. The result was that the price of land in the state increased 300% over the past four years, as identified the National Institute of Colonization and Agrarian Reform -INCRA.

The numbers of the National Rural Cadastre, of Incra, show that 844,000 hectares were distributed between 1,229 properties in Mato Grosso. A preference for the state - mostly agricultural - has put him in an absolute position. In other federation units, although the number of total properties is higher, their fields are smaller.

This is the case of São Paulo, where 12,291 properties were acquired by foreigners. The area corresponds to 491,000 hectares and the production of cane sugar predominates. In Parana, are 5,130 properties (299,000 hectares) acquired by foreign capital. Beside Mato Grosso, São Paulo and Paraná, the highest rates of land concentration on foreign hands was found in the Mato Grosso do Sul, Minas Gerais and Bahia. About 60% of foreign lands in Brazil are located in these states.

In those six states, the size of areas for the economic exploitation varies. Some have between 2 and 5 thousand hectares. Others, 5 to 10 thousand hectares. There are also 10,000 to 20,000 hectares and other more than 20,000 hectares.

Speaking to SóNotícias, Incra’s officer said the figures on the distribution of land may change. This is because the data is constantly checked by the National Register Rural and possibly corrected, according to the information cleared by the regional INCRA and the state.
Source: J. Leandro Nascimento/SóNotícias, with the AgribusinessWatch

Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Climate: Projections for the 2011 summer season confirm a new La Niña episode July 07, 2010

July 7, 2010

After a period of about a year with warm water (El Niño), since June we observe a process of cooling waters of the equatorial Pacific Ocean, indicating the return of La Niña and climate change as early as next spring.

The cooling of the waters of the Pacific Ocean should rise gradually over the course of this winter, with La Niña fully configured during the spring and staying during the summer 2011. The forecast is for an episode of moderate to strong and should last at least until the autumn of 2011.

The last La Niña occurred in the summer 2007/2008. However, given the characteristics such as intensity, speed of its formation and likely duration, the episode this year is very similar to that observed in the second half of 1998 and summer 1999.

SOYBEANS: For the soybean crop in Brazil the La Niña has two well characterized impacts: First, delay the return of rains in the Southeast, Midwest and Northeast of Brazil. As for the crops in southern Brazil and also in Mato Grosso do Sul reduces the incidence of rain and increases the risk of droughts in summer regionalised. For the 2010/2011 harvest, therefore, changes the climate scenario, especially when compared with that seen in previous harvest.

The return of the rains this year should only occur in late October and throughout November, even so in an irregular way, which should result in delayed planting of crops for the Mato Grosso, Goias, Minas Gerais, Bahia, Piauí, Maranhão and Tocantins. During the summer rains in these states we will have an average behavior, with the risk of rains are prolonged until April and early May.

Already the fields of Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, Paraná and Mato Grosso do Sul should not face major problems in the phase of planting between October and November, but should consider the risk of drought during the summer months. Including the continuation of La Nina refers to an autumn rains also below average.

MAIZE: The phenomenon La Niña increases the risk for the crops of Paraná, Mato Grosso do Sul and São Paulo, facing period of scarcity of rain during the fall, and we can not eliminate the risk of cold (frost) from May. As for the second corn crop in Mato Grosso and Goiás, the climate scenario is more favorable because the rainy season should last until April and early May 2011.

CROPS OF ARGENTINA AND PARAGUAY: As for soybean in southern Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay during periods of La Niña also observed a decline in rainfall and increases the risk of droughts in summer regionalised. For the 2011 harvest, therefore, changes the climate scenario compared to those seen in the last harvest, in theory reducing the potential production.
For the period from planting the summer crops between October and November should not face major problems, since the spring even with the presence of La Niña, is still a period of good rains. However, Argentine producers should strongly consider the risk of drought during the summer months. Including the continuation of La Nina refers to an autumn rains also below average.

AMERICAN CROPS (harvest 2010): Definitions (favorable) conditions for planting soybeans and corn, going forward the concerns turn to the occurrence and distribution of rainfall during the summer. In general we can say that weather conditions are favorable for the production of crops in the Midwest United States. The trend for this summer is an average condition, with increased temperature and reduced rainfall. It is noteworthy that just as tipically ocurred in north american summers, this year there could be some periods of drought regionalized between July and August, mainly in the producing areas located further west, including parts of the states of Nebraska, Iowa and Missouri. Predicting the installation of La Niña for the autumn (Northern Hemisphere) is associated with reduced rainfall, which in theory should encourage the harvest period from September.
Source: Somar Weather / SóNotícias
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Purchase made by JBS facing resistance from American farmers July 7, 2010

July 7, 2010

Chicago - The American Cattle Producers Association R-CALF/USA handed a petition to the Department of Justice of the United States to suspend the purchase of McElhaney Cattle Company feedlot by Brazilian JBS company. The transaction is valued at U.S. $ 24 million and includes 100% of assets, including feedlots and feed mill. The JBS is the world's largest producer of beef.

It said the acquisition may cause problems of competitiveness in the industry, since the JBS in 2008 bought the company with the largest feedlot operations in the country, Five Rivers Ranch Cattle Feeding. The Five Rivers was acquired as part of the operations of Smithfield Foods with cattle.

The purchase of confinement McElhaney, located in Welton (Arizona), would be "especially harmful to independent cattle producers," according to the letter R-CALF/USA to justice.

In a relevant fact published on Thursday, the JBS McElhaney said the containment is capable of containing over 130 000 cattle and simultaneously "is strategically located in the production unit of JBS in Tolleson, also in Arizona." The transaction is subject to approval by the competent regulatory bodies.
Source: Filipe Domingues / Agencia Estado; information is of Dow Jones.

Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Disappearing bees can impair production of fruits in Brazil July 7, 2010

July 7, 2010

The decrease in the number of bees may undermine the culture of fruits such as melon, mango, watermelon and guava in Brazil. The biologist and researcher at Embrapa Semiarid, Márcia Ribeiro, told National Radio said that the United States and Canada has estimated the loss of millions of dollars in fruit production with the disappearance of bees.

According to the biologist, in Brazil, there are no studies on these losses. "But we know that the number of bees is declining here too." She explained that in diverse cultures bees are necessary for there to pollinate flowers and therefore the plant can produce fruit.

For the researcher, Brazil began to invest in studies of pollinators and pollination of forms in recent years. The National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) launched in September last year, bidding for research on pollination in different cultures. The researcher notes that these studies are just beginning.

According to Marcia Ribeiro, the bees are killed by people who collect honey from hives natural. "They go to the native vegetation, extracting honey from the nests without any care and let the bees die, causing an imbalance in the environment."
Source: Agência Brazil; edition: Talita Cavalcante
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian ethanol lobby wins 'allies' in the United States July 7, 2010

July 7, 2010

The lobby of the Brazilian ethanol found two unusual reinforcements to its goal of opening the tough U.S. market.

Faced with the biggest environmental disaster in the U.S. - the spill of about 35,000 bpd of oil in the Gulf of Mexico over the last 65 days - the U.S. president, Barack Obama has embraced the banner of renewable energy and reducing dependence oil.

In response to the deficit in the country, speaking in favor of cutting public spending more extremist wing of the Republican Party, the Tea Party, gave strength to the elimination of subsidies.

"The old argument that opening the U.S. market for ethanol will only benefit Brazil fell to the ground," said Marcos Jank, president of the Union of Industry Cana-de-Açúcar (UNICA).

"The disaster in the Gulf of Mexico opened the internal discussion about whether it is worth exploring for oil in deep waters in the United States and encouraging the expanded use of biofuel."

The new "allies" will be useful for both short-term goals of the sugarcane sector in Brazil. The first is to end the specific tariff on imports of ethanol, $ 0.54 per gallon, making unviable Brazilian exports to the U.S. market.

The second goal is to end the subsidy of $ 0.45 to each gallon of ethanol (corn) added to gasoline in the United States, in force since 1978 and inflated the price of the product to market. This account reaches U.S. $ 6 billion a year. "The real debate in the United States, is about the end of the grant. It's not about the fare. The question is who will pay this bill?" said Jank.

The validity of both instruments expire on December 31. Unica believes that, with some difficulty, might convince U.S. lawmakers to end the tariff and subsidy. The agenda, however, will be short because of the legislative elections scheduled for November 2.
Source: AE/Agência Estado; information is from the newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

U.S. begins to pay compensation on behalf of cotton subsidies July 7, 2010

July 7, 2010

The U.S. government has started paying compensation to Brazil over the issue of cotton subsidies, after negotiating the sanctions with the Brazilian government. The money will go to a fund that will benefit producers in Brazil. This week the U.S. government deposited U.S. $ 30 million in a bank account in the United States in favor of the Brazilian Institute of Cotton, newly created.

"The actions permitted for the application of money are basically training and technical capacity within any area in the cotton industry, both for producers and workers, said mr. Haroldo Cunha, president of Abrapa, Brazilian Association of Cotton Producers.

We also can use it at the very important issue to the industry, the cotton pest control, continue mr. Cunha. For example, fighting the “bicudo”, a pest that carries quite a loss and a very high cost producer of cotton. It should also be invested heavily in promoting the use of cotton. Moreover, we have programs aimed at the adjustment of property, labor standards, social legislation and any policy toward the conservation of natural resources.

When we knew that scientific research would be outside of these activities, Cunha said, we argued that it was a very considerable loss. The money comes from a source of U.S. treasuries, which is called the CCC. In this source of funds, I believe that any source of funds, they do not allow research to be done outside of an institution linked to the USDA. The research is done only within the United States by U.S. entities. That, somehow, makes sense because they would be promoting the search for a country competing with them", said the president of Abrapa.

The deposits in the fund should amount to U.S. $ 140 million per year. The management of resources will be the responsibility of a board that will include representatives of farmers and the government.
Source: Globo Rural, with the AgribusinessWatch
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Minister warns that the new Forest Code can generate dispute between states June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

The Environment Minister, Izabella Teixeira, warned today that there is a risk of creating a competition among states attempting to attract investment, if there is no clarity in the new Forest Code on the role of units of the Federation in compliance with the new law.
"We have to calmly discuss the requirements of decentralization of technical resources and determine whether five years is a little or a lot," she said, referring to the proposed reform of the Forestry Code, under discussion in Congress, which provides, among other things, a five-year moratorium on the authorization of new areas of deforestation and respite for fines as a way to provide adaptation to the new rules.
For the minister, it is necessary to take into account the "regional particularities," arguing that while there are states with good infrastructure and tools to better manage environmental issues, there are other more fragile in need of investments accordingly. She noted that no one can compare the situation of those who come deforesting Amazon recently with those farmers who are on their lands for 50 years.
"We can not believe that we will continue practicing agriculture with deforestation. What we do is invest in technology to recover degraded areas", she argued. Teixeira, however, said it is still making an evaluation of the proposed change and who has engaged in dialogue not only with the rapporteur of the matter, Deputy Aldo Rebelo (PC do B-SP) as well as with members of the Committee on Environment and the rural representatives of the House of Representatives.
Source: Agência Brazil
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian Monetary Council prohibits rural credit to whom kept slave labor June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

Financial institutions belonging to the National Rural Credit System can no longer extend credit to individuals or companies which are inscribed at Ministry of Labor and Employment list of employers that kept workers in conditions akin to slave labor. The decision was approved last 22nd of June at a meeting of the National Monetary Council (CMN.)
According to the Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy of the Ministry of Finance, Gilson Bittencourt, even after the end of the administrative process at the Ministry of Labor concerning the assessment notice, the names of such persons or companies are kept in the register for at least two years, and their activities monitored.
"Even if the legal proceedings continue, the purpose of the administrative process and the entry of such persons/companies on the list of the Ministry of Labour, they can not hire this credit. Indeed, it is another tool to discourage the practice of degrading people", Bittencourt said.
Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Lana Cristina
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch

Cotton farmers praised the agreement, but doubt the end of U.S. subsidies June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

The agreement suspended until the end of 2012 the start of trade retaliation to the United States will hardly eradicate subsidies granted by the U.S. government to producers of cotton, said the president of the Brazilian Association of Cotton Producers (Abrapa), Haroldo Cunha. He, however, welcomes the effort to bring aid to reasonable levels.

"The possibility of retaliation by Brazil was important as a means of pressure. Without it [the threat of retaliation], would not be possible to reach an agreement of this magnitude", said Cunha.

According to the president of Abrapa, the environment is quite favorable for the U.S. government reduces subsidies to acceptable levels. Not just for the endorsement of World Trade Organisation (WTO) to Brazil to apply sanctions, but by their own internal pressures in the United States. "Even the American taxpayers are already questioning the use of resources of the U.S. Treasury in these subsidies."

In November last year, the WTO authorized Brazil to retaliate against the United States up to $ 830 million because of subsidies to cotton farmers by the U.S. government. Of this total, U.S. $ 591 million are in products that will import tariffs readjusted and about $ 240 million in intellectual property involving trademarks, patents and copyrights that can be broken by Brazil.

The agreement provides for the suspension of retaliation by Brazil until 2012, when the U.S. Farm Bill will recast. Under the deal, the U.S. will have to limit spending on grants and aids in reducing the credit guarantee program exports of cotton.

Another item of the agreement envisages the creation of a fund of US $ 147.3 million by the U.S. government to finance technical assistance to cotton production in Brazil. According to Marcio Cozendey, Head of Economic Affairs of the Foreign Ministry, the process of opening the account for the fund is underway and the first deposit must be made within 60 days.
Source: Max Wellton, reporter Agency Brazil; edition: Rivadavia Severo
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch

Rains give loss of R$ 100 million for sugar and alcohol sector in the Northeast June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

The damage to the production chain of sugar and ethanol in the Northeast can reach R$ 100 millions, due to the rains that hit the states of Alagoas and Pernambuco in the last week. The assessment is from the president of the Union of Producers of Sugar and Alcohol of Pernambuco, Mr. Renato Cunha, who emphasized the destruction of crops and also the roads that serve the transport of cane sugar to the mills.

According to Cunha, the expectation for this year was that the Northeast crush about 63 million tons of cane. After the rains, that left part of the crops submerged, the region is expected to make the grind of about 59 million tonnes. Besides grinding least the Northeast will delay by at least a month early in the processing of sugar cane, which was held in August.

"Being optimistic, I believe we will crush about 59 million tons of cane," lamented Cunha. The country’s expectation is to grind in this year 590 million tons of cane sugar.

Besides the smaller volume, another factor concerns the mill owners from the Northeast. The fields closest to the coast, planted in the floodplain area, were submerged, resulting in changes in the level of sucrose product. "Sucrose is the wealth of cane sugar. Submerged, the plant does not breathe and its level of sucrose falls a lot", he explained.

The flooding of rivers Mundaú and Canhoto reached mills and sugar plantations at Zona da Mata Alagoas. In mountainous areas, where the rain did not cause flooding, the problem is concentrated on roads and maintenance of jobs. Why give it more difficult terrain, the monoculture of sugarcane in the Northeast ends up with a lower level of mechanization that crops the center-south of the country and, therefore, employs proportionately more people.

While the South Centre, where the crop occurs in flat areas, employs on average 0.8 workers per thousand tons of sugarcane, the Zona da Mata Northeastern employs 5.8 people per thousand tons. According to figures from the union, while the share of the Northeast in the national production of cane sugar varies between 11% and 12%, participation in the number of jobs generated by the cultivation of sugarcane in the whole country is 33%.

In addition to the jobs generated by cultivation, small farmers who sell sugar cane to the mills also had their crops destroyed. In the state of Pernambuco, 12, 000 small farmers are engaged in sugarcane cultivation.
Source: Luciana Lima, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Nadia Franco
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian businessmen are going to Africa to plant soybeans and cotton June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

After the onslaught of Chinese and Koreans, the unexplored lands of Africa gained new investors: the Brazilians.

Lured by the low production cost, the proximity to the markets of Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the low price of land, Brazilian rural entrepreneurs are going to the continent grow cotton, soybeans, corn and other products.

Brazil already has strong presence in the sector of infrastructure in Africa, but investment in plantations is recent and has been intensifying in recent years.

Later this month, the Mato Grosso group Pinesso will begin planting cotton and soybeans in Sudan in partnership with a Sudanese company. The expectation is to plant 100,000 hectares over the next four years.

Sudan also receive in July a delegation of Brazilian producers of soybeans, which have initial conversations with the local government, informed the APROSOJA (Soybean Producers Association of Mato Grosso).

At the same time, another delegation will go to Ethiopia and Mauritania, also at the invitation of local governments, to negotiate the growing season.
Brazilian companies are already at least six other African countries, cultivating sugar cane and rice.
Other companies as Irriger are investing in agricultural technology, such as irrigation, irrigation systems that deploy in Sudan since 2008. Invited by the government, the company develops projects to farm corn, soybeans, cotton and sugarcane.

Local governments offer incentives such as tax exemption and good financing conditions to attract foreign investment.


The African savannah is dubbed the "new cerrado" for FAO (the UN arm for agriculture and food). According to the organization, the region can become a world center of production of grain and food, as only 10% of its arable land is used.

"Africa is fertile, but lacks technology. And that Brazilians have as few," says Pinesso Gilson, director of Pinesso, who was wanted by the Sudanese government to plant cotton in the country.

Because of soil fertility and lower incidence of pests, Pinesso estimates it will spend only $ 850 per hectare, less than half of U.S. $ 1,850 you need in Brazil.

"They are not fools," says Joseph Rao, a partner at Pricewaterhouse Coopers. "Just having left the South, where land was expensive, and went to the Midwest, are now seeing opportunities in Africa."

The president of the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, Michel Alaby, says that investing in African countries can be advantageous for its proximity to large consumer markets such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia. According to him, these countries import in food, up to U.S.$ 70 billion per year.
Source: Hass Estelita Carazzai and Luiza Flag, Folha de Sao Paulo
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch

Ministry of Agriculture approve the use of pesticides banned in several countries June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010

Pesticides banned in several countries and in Brazil has vetoed by the Ministry of Health should continue to be used in common foods of the Brazilian table, such as rice, beans and tomatoes.

At the end of 2009, Anvisa (National Agency for Sanitary Vigilance) decided to ban five pesticides linked to cancer and fetal malformation: trichlorfon, cyhexatin, acephate, endosulfan and methamidophos, these last three matches in food in the country.

An indication of the organ of the Ministry of Health, the use would be reduced gradually until the substances were completely eliminated at the end of next year. In March this year, however, the Ministry of Agriculture issued a decree which keeps the use of these compounds, through the National Plan for Risk Management of Pesticides.


The measure is controversial because, by law, the final word on the subject is of the Health and the Environment, not of Agriculture.

In tomato, the lettuce and rice, the use of pesticides is already banned, but as the products are for sale on the market, they are eventually used in these foods.

In the case of beans and peppers is not prohibited, but the compounds are found in quantities above the legal limit, according to surveys by Anvisa.


Recent studies show the relation of exposure to these substances with nervous system diseases.


This year, the American Academy of Pediatrics conducted a survey of 1,100 children and found that the 119 who were diagnosed with attention deficit had organophosphate residue (molecule used in pesticides) in the urine above the average of other children.

In 2009, we used 1 million tons of pesticides on crops in the country which means an average of 5 kg per capita.


The Agriculture Department defends testing known as "risk assessment" of whether the harmful effects of pesticides can be minimized without ban those substances from the country.

Accordingly to Luis Rangel, coordinator of the Secretariat of Agricultural Protection, the initiative to keep the use of substances was taken to IBAMA and ANVISA mobilize and participate in risk assessment.


Researcher and Professor of Toxicology Course of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Brasília and a member of the Expert Group on Pesticide Residues of the UN, Eloisa Dutra Caldas says the problem is complex.

“While I believe in an ideal world, these pesticides were to be banished”, she says that "the farmer needs these insecticides, because the replacements are very expensive." Source: Vanessa Correa, Collaboration for the Folha de Sao Paulo
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch

The full report can be read in http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/fsp/cotidian/ff1906201022.htm

Exports of soy complex should reach record June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

The Brazilian Association of Vegetable Oil Industries (Abiove) report on Monday, 8th of June, projected higher exports of the soy complex (grains, meal and oil) compared with forecasts of April.

The country will export in the 2010/11 season (February / January) a record 29.2 million tons of grain, against 29 million in the previous forecast and up from 28 million last season, according to the association.

"Demand remains strong, especially from China, we foresee an export really high," said Abiove’s economist Henrique Paes de Barros.

Brazilian exports of soybean meal in the same period will reach 13.2 million tons, up from 13 million tonnes in the last projection, an increase of more than 1 million tons a year earlier.

"The export of meal is going well for the European Union (the main market, accounting for more than 70 percent of what Brazil exports). The accumulated over the last year, is virtually the same level, demand is also heated" , said Barros.

Brazil will export 1.35 million tons of soybean oil in 2010/11 crop, above the estimate of April (1.3 million tons), but still lower than it exported last season (1.45 million tons).

"Oil is exporting less for biodiesel program, production increase is being directed to the internal market," he said, commenting on the increasing mix this year to 5 percent.

"It's more attractive for industries to stay with the accumulation of GST credit," the economist said, noting that any new demand in China, on behalf of a trade dispute with Argentina, has not been enough to boost exports.

He said even if China fails to buy from Argentina, it can bring from other places or replace imports of soybean oil with other edible oils.

The foreign exchange generated by exports of the soy complex (the main product of the export agribusiness) were estimated at 15.2 billion dollars, against 17.2 billion last year, amid forecasts of lower prices of grain.

GREATER HARVEST - The increase in estimates of exports came amid a forecast high in the crop, whose harvest has already been closed. Abiove has adjusted its projection for production to 68.4 million tonnes, compared to 67.9 million tons estimated in April, when there were still some crops being harvested.

With greater supply, the association increased the expectation of processing in 2010/11 to 33.1 million tonnes from 32.9 million in the previous forecast and 30.7 million last season.
Source: Reuters, Agronotícias. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

IBGE foresee grain harvest of 145.8 million tonnes in 2010 June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

The Brazilian grain harvest is expected to total 145.8 million tons this year, with growth of 8.8% over the 134 million tonnes harvested in 2009 and 1% lower than the record harvest of 2008, from 145.9 million tons . The estimate given in the Systematic Survey of Agricultural Production (LASP) in May, released yesterday, June 8, by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).

The area to be harvested, 46.8 million hectares, shrank 0.9% compared to 2009. The three main crops: soybean, maize and rice, which account for 83.1% of the planted area, vary from 7.2%, -6.7% and -6.1%, respectively, in the previous year. The yield corn and soybean record increase of 3.7% and 19.6%, respectively, and rice fell by 10.8%.

The expected harvest for 2010 has the following regional distribution: the southern region, 62.2 million tons (18.7%), Midwest, 51.1 million tons (4.6%), South East, 16.5 million tonnes (-3.8%), Northeast, 12.1 million tons (3.2%) and North, 3.8 million tons (1.1%). The state of Paraná recovered the position of the Brazilian largest producer of grains, surpassing Mato Grosso by 1.8 percentage point.

In the May survey of agricultural production there are the variations in estimates, in comparison with April, the production of nine products. The oscillations are negative for wheat grain (-8.2%), beans, whole grains (-5.0%), herbaceous seed cotton (-1.2%), rough rice (-1.2%) and total grain maize (-0.3%). Already the positive side, soybeans (0.3%), coffee beans (1.8), barley grain (3.1%) and oats in grain (24.9%).

The crops of winter, concentrated in the south, must have accrued in oats (24.9%), barley (3.1%) and decreased for wheat (-8.2%). For wheat, the most important culture of this period, the expected production was 5.2 million tonnes (-8.2% compared to LSPA April).

The decrease reflects the inclusion of the first assessment of the crop in Rio Grande do Sul, where production is expected to be 17.6% lower than the previous. Paraná, major national producer wheat (57.5% of national production), also cut production by 4.0% due to non fulfillment of the plantations previously estimated.
Source: Riomar Trinity, reporter Agency Brazil; edition: Teresa Barbosa.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Conab estimated record crop in 2009/2010, with 146.9 million tons of grain

The good rainfall in the areas of increased production, increased corn yields in Paraná and Goiás and the increase in area planted to this grain and soybeans in Mato Grosso are the main factors that led the National Supply Company (Conab) to estimate a record harvest of 146.92 million tons of grain for the 2009/2010 harvest, reaching the final stage.

The result of the lifting of the ninth season, released two days ago (8) is 8.7% higher than the 135.13 million tons harvested in 2008/2009. Soybeans should be responsible for 68.7 million tons, 20.2% higher than the previous crop. The total production of corn, added the first and second crops, is expected to reach 53.46 million tons, an increase of 4.8% over the previous cycle. Thus, the two crops represent 83.1% of the volume of the entire grain harvest.

According to Conab, with less than a month to the end of the crop, it’s already harvested 76% of rice, 98% of the first corn harvest and almost all of the beans. Despite record production, the total area planted in the 2009/2010 cycle is 0.6% below the previous period, staying at 47.4 million hectares.

For the winter season, the company estimates that the acreage of wheat will total 2.12 million hectares, a reduction of 12.5% compared to the previous cycle. The drop should occur mainly in two major producing states, Rio Grande do Sul and Paraná, which is responsible for 89% of Brazilian production. It is expected to be harvested throughout the country 5.06 million tonnes of wheat, against 5.88 million tonnes the previous harvest.

The field research done by the technicians of Conab with representatives of cooperatives, rural unions, public agencies and private sector linked to the entire country was held between 1 and May 22.
Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Juliana Andrade.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Breaking corn crop could reach 900 000 tonnes in MT

Despite having contributed to the record grain harvest in the country, the climate significantly damaged the corn yield in Mato Grosso. According to the director of Agricultural Policy and Information National Supply Company (Conab), Silvio Porto, losses in the state can reach 900 000 tonnes.

"The data that may have some novelty is maize, mainly in the state of Goias, because we had an “Indian summer”, which affected productivity dramatically in Mato Grosso. “There we had a sharp fall of 900 thousand tons by the previous forecast”, said the director of Conab, during the presentation of the results of the ninth research of the grain harvest for the period 2009-2010. "We are now aware of the situation of the state of Goiás to see what the behavior."

In the Northeast, the drop occurred in rice production. But it was not significant, Porto said. "There are public stock of the product and that gives us peace of mind to say that there will be availability of rice for the market," he said.

Already the wheat crop can reserve good surprises. Port explained that the analysis Conab on wheat production were conservative and that therefore the country could be "positively surprised", but it is too early to celebrate. "Wheat always presents an unusual situation and it is difficult to project depending on the climatic aspects."

As for the grain harvest as a whole, the projection made by Conab is consolidating at 147 million tonnes.
Source: Peter Peduzzi, reporter Agency Brazil; edition: Vinicius Doria.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

President says Brazil should regulate land sales to foreigners June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

President Luiz Inacio da Silva said on last 7th of June, during the launch of the Agricultural and Livestock Plan 2010/2011, that Brazil should begin to discuss the regulation of land sales to foreigners.

The president said Congress should be aware of the issue. "The purchase of land in Brazil by foreigners is a problem we need to start discussing."

"One thing is [the alien] to buy indusgtrial plants, and another to buy the land that we have for our crops, or land that has ore. That's one thing we have to discuss how to do in order to not permit the abuse in the purchase of land by foreigners. "
Source: Ivan Richard, Agência Brazil reporter; edition: Rivadavia Severo.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Parliamentary critics of the encounter of Aldo Rebelo with ruralist representatives June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010
The meeting was to discuss the final draft of the new Forest Code

Congressman Aldo Rebelo (PCdoB-SP) turned public, last 8th of June, the report on the Special Commission which will introduce the new Brazilian Forest Code. The text was completed under a hail of criticism from environmentalists around the country, including the countertop industry in Congress. Lawmakers were even more unhappy when they learned that the rapporteur of the project met with members of the ruralist group in the House and Senate to show the final draft of the most controversial portions of the document.

Last week, for example, Rep. Moreira Mendes (PPS-RO) revealed to the correio Braziliense newspapar that Aldo Rebelo scored an informal meeting with other deputies and senators ruralistas. "It was not an official meeting, but I was very pleased with the text because it is adequate to Brazilian reality," said Mendes.

The coordinator of the Parliamentary Front Environmentalist, Mr. Sarney Filho (PV-MA), was angered by the news. According to him, Rebelo had not the same attitude with any of the representatives of the environmentalist bloc. "Everything we know about the final text of the report is the press reports. That is, information is elusive. “The kicker in the environmental area is given precisely in the details," criticized the parliament. "It's a shame that the week after the World Environment Day Brazil will win a gift similar as the ‘Troian Horse’ as it should be the report," he added.


Even the environment minister, Izabella Teixeira, who often adopt a pleasant tone for addressing the most delicate issues, shot the new report of the Brazilian Forest Code. On Monday press conference, the head of the environmental Minister mentioned that the way the new text was produced, was more beneficial to the environment that the former was maintained.

"I'm waiting to read the report, because I know the final text of Deputy Aldo Rebelo. ... We, the Ministry of Environment, we believe, however, that neither was necessary to change the current forest code if we take into account what has been disclosed so far. ... Izabella said.

Legal reserve
The report prepared by Rebelo brings very controversial issues, such as transfer from Union to the states, the responsibility to issue environmental standards. Even under the allegations that the 27 units of the Federation would have to report to the federal level and that the final decision would be taken by bodies such as Ministries of Environment and Agriculture, Livestock and Supply, Aldo Rebelo has not convinced the environmentalists, that fear that the states will start a competition of the much more flexible rules to attract investment.

The new proposed Brazilian Forest Code creates discomfort among activists from the environmental area because Rebelo also suggests that small landowners will not need to keep the legal reserve. The text states that medium and large farmers can keep the percentage set out to preserve the land with the rent of the corresponding area within parks. In this case, the criticism is that the measure would exempt large ranchers to recover degraded areas.
Source: Igor Silveira, Correio Braziliense.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Rural leaders expected a better plan June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

The measures of the new harvest plan 2010/11 are good, but still insufficient to enable the rural sector to overcome ancient bondage of agricultural policy. Rural leaders evaluating the eighth and final Agricultural Year Plan of the Luiz Inacio da Silva administration, which provides $ 100 billion to the corporate sector, stressed that it ignore structural issues, such as chronic disabilities logistics and infrastructure for the transportation of production, beyond the limitations of current model of rural credit, based on increasing the supply of resources, not the income guarantee for the producer.

Part of the industry recognizes merit in the "government's effort," but also criticizes the lack of solution for simple issues such as excessive demands for garantees to loans, limited coverage of agricultural insurance, shyness of stimuli to the industrialization of production and final interest rates - 6.75% per annum for agricultural funding.

"Despite the volume of credit, the government passed incentives to add value, gave no further working capital. Moreover, we get an interest rate [6.75% to bear] when the Selic was at 18% a year ", says the president of the Organization of Brazilian Cooperatives (OCB), Márcio Lopes de Freitas. "Not bad, but could be better." The cooperatives wanted a new investment program to add value to commodities. "The real need in the industry would be about $ 150 billion", he added.

In election year, the Confederation of Agriculture and Livestock (CNA) failed to submit the document with the general producers' claims to the government as it did in recent years. Still, the chairman of grains, cereals and fibers, the Goias rural producer José Mário Schreiner, considers "worthy" some points of harvest plan, as the stimulus to the recovery of degraded areas and medium producers, but points out the shortcomings. "Credit to warehouses not yet solved because the return is slow and has an impact on the individual limit. It is a commendable effort, but it helps little because the producers are not able to raise credit limits," said Schreiner. "We have to change the model of rural credit, get a new agricultural policy."

The producers of the Midwest also showed progress, but claim adjustments. "The plan is good, there was a good increase in resources, which caters well to the south and southeast, to the president of the Brazilian Association of Producers of Soy (APROSOJA Brazil), Glauber Silveira da Silva. The program for medium-sized producers which provides R$ 5.65 billion, "is important," he said. And the sustainability actions, grouped under the "Low Carbon Farming" are "a positive step" to retrieve areas. "But in regions such as Bahia, Piauí, Goiás and Mato Grosso do Sul this plan meets little space because the individual credit limit is still low," he says. The module average sum of producers in these regions 1000 to 1500 hectares. "It would take R$ 1.2 million to R$ 2 million limit," he added. The limits for soybeans rose from $ 450,000 to $ 500,000 per beneficiary.

The Brazilian Rural Society (SRB) estimates that the government still did not understand the real extent of the benefits of rural insurance. "We can not have an insurance policy to keep rural incomes to farmers," complains the president of the SRB, Cesario Ramalho. "Furthermore, we are nationalizing the remaining credit in the hands of Bank of Brazil, much of its $ 92.5 billion were not released and the mix of interest gives an average of 15% per annum, which is an exorbitant price, the more expensive in the world", he says.

In defense of the last harvest plan under his government, the president said yesterday, 8th of June, at the headquarters of EMBRAPA, that he have done much for agriculture in the country. "I am convinced that we breakthrough in the government, in business, family agriculture and Embrapa," he said, alongside the Minister of Agriculture, Wagner Rossi. "We were careful not to create skeletons and need not be discussing the woes of other times that were not resolved," he said, referring to the complex debt renegotiations countryside. But Lula has admitted that lack of progress in the country self-sufficient in fertilizer production and the imposition of rules to prevent "abuses" in the purchase of land by foreigners. "Agriculture is predestined, it's time and instead of being the breadbasket of the world, and sells machinery and food to Africa and Latin America," the president predicted.
Source: Valor Econômico, Agronotícias.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Harvest Plan allocate R$ 3.15 billion to encourage sustainability June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010

The Agricultural and Livestock Plan 2010/2011, released last 7th of June by the Ministry of Agriculture, has highlighted the creation of the Low Carbon Farming (ABC), to finance the farming practices that reduce the emission of greenhouse gases. Will be R$ 2 billion for such funding.

According to the Minister of Agriculture, Wagner Rossi, as a whole will invest R$ 3.150 billion to promote sustainability through agronomic practices that preserve the environment and increase productivity.

Beyond the resources of ABC, will be R$ 1 billion in credits, the Incentive Program for Sustainable Agribusiness (Produse), and R$ 150 million to the Commercial Plantation Forest Recovery.

Producers who choose to adopt no-tillage systems in the straw (which protects the soil, preventing erosion) may have also R$ 2 billion in financing cost - value that corresponds to a 15% increase over the estimated R$ 15 billion for this type of planting.

"These are the major features of the history [R$ 116 billion, total value of the Harvest Plan]. And cabalistic numbers are global. Big money in any country in the world, and that is due to the growth achieved by the Brazilian agriculture. Thus, we will be able to hit record highs in the coming seasons", the minister said during the launch of the plan.

He said while the economy has shown high interest, no plans had increased harvest rates. "We had cases where there was even low-interest," he added.

"Small farmers won with Pronaf [National Program for Strengthening Family Agriculture], a program that protects them. But there wasn’t something for the average producer, which this year will receive special attention through Pronamp [National Program of Support to Middle Producer]", he added.

The minister highlighted the need to seek alternatives to real sustainability and economic. "The forest plantation is the only real alternative. These decisions will help Brazil in meeting the targets set [at the 15th UN Conference on Climate Change, COP-15 held in Copenhagen in December], reduction of greenhouse gases, "he said.
Source: Danilo Macedo and Peter Peduzzi, reporters Agency Brazil; edition: Juliana Andrade.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Rural producer organizations will complain against Monsanto market control May 27, 2010

May 27, 2010

The Brazilian Association of Producers of soy from Mato Grosso (Aprosoja) and the Brazilian Association of Grain Producers Not Genetically Modified (Abrange, in Portuguese) should refer to the Ministry of Justice against Monsanto. Small and medium farmers allege that the multinational is forcing seeds producers to allocate 85% of their production to transgenic varieties.

The complaint will be made to the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (Cade), conveyed to the Ministry of Justice. The president of Aprosoja, Glabuer Silveira, says that it is difficult to find in the market conventional seed. He also denounced the industry by charging 2% royalties on the seed used in case the producer to produce above average of 55 bags.

Producers complain that a kilo of seeds of transgenic soybeans also increased, from R $ 0.35 to R$ 0.44. According to Aprosoja and Abrange the introduction of rules to soybeans is due to the control of the Brazilian market by Monsanto. At least 70% of the market are under domain of the company.
Source: Radio Agencia NP. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian government modifies anti-dumping duty on glyphosate from China

The Council of Ministers of Foreign Trade Chamber (CAMEX), at a meeting held yesterday (May, 26) in the Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade (MDIC), changed the form of charging anti-dumping duty currently levied on Brazilian imports Chinese glyphosate. Glyphosate is a herbicide intended mainly to control weeds and used with the seeds of transgenic soybean from Monsanto, producer of the "Round up" herbicide, which has glyphosate as its active ingredient, and the transgenic seed “Round up ready”.

The rate of 2.1% was replaced by the application of an antidumping specific, limited to US$ 2.52 per kg. Imports of the product, whose average price per kilogram exceeding $ 3.60 will not pay the antidumping duty. This value represents the difference between the normal price of the product and the price of Chinese exports to Brazil.

For the executive secretary of Camex, Lytha Spindola, the measure should have no impact on costs for producers in Brazil. She said the goal of the change in the way of recovery is "priced imports to prevent underpricing”.
Source: Mara Schuster. Press Advisory to the Ministry, with the Observatorio
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

JBS processed beef under recall in the United States May 26, 2010

May 26, 2010

JBS, the world's largest processor of beef, is conducting a recall in the United States of some of its products exported from the factory Lins, owned by JBS under mark Bertin.

According to a company statement, American authorities have detected the presence of ivermectin (anthelmintic used in cattle) above the limit allowed by law.

JBS said in the text that "will examine the products and will take appropriate actions to resolve this impasse" and that the financial impact of the case should be limited, it can serve the U.S. market with products from other factories.

The factory can not make new exports to the U.S. until the problem is cleared up. JBS is bringing the goods already shipped back to Brazil.

The company attributed the information to the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture. The ministry, however, denied having received the notification of the recall of American health authority, attributing the information to the JBS itself. The prediction is that the official announcement to be sent next week.

Through a spokesperson, the ministry also said that all products go through inspection in Brazil to see if they meet the standards of the destination country. The U.S. remake the tests when the product reaches its territory.

The examinations in Brazil did not show levels above the limit suggested by the Americans. The ministry said it had no position to point out the reason for the divergence of the tests by not having access to the report.

From the data of the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, the U.S. bought 43,000 tons of processed beef in 2009. The lot returned to Brazil was 39 tons.

In silence period determined by the Securities Commission on behalf of an offer of shares to be held soon, JBS said it can not give more information about the recall.
Source: Folha de Sao Paulo. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Rural sector needs high quality public policy for his role in the economy May 27, 2010

May 27, 2010

Curitiba, Paraná - Qualify public policy, defining a new role for the rural sector in national development. It was argued that by the Secretary of Territorial Development, Ministry of Agrarian Development, Humberto Oliveira, on May 26, attending the 2nd Conference of State for Rural Development and Sustainable Growth in Curitiba.

On occasion, he presented the proposals of the Policy Development to the Rural Brazil (PDBR, in Portuguese). "Everything that relates to the field should be of interest not only to the agricultural sector, but the whole society. In the field, are important challenges such as environmental issues, water management, new patterns of energy consumption, biodiversity and cultural diversity must be preserved,"said Oliveira.

The secretary noted that 70% of production that reaches the tables of Brazilians are the responsibility of family farming. He also pointed out the need for incentives for the population to stay on the field. "We still have large gaps in the field. In large urban areas, are concentrated 70% of the population. That requires a new development model for rural areas", he noted.  

According to Oliveira, historically, the public budget have been concentrated in large cities and there is still shortage of hospitals, universities and public infra-structure in small municipalities. He recalled that the first steps to change this reality were given to the establishment of the “Territories of Citizenship”, held by the federal government in partnership with states, municipalities and civil society. "This year alone, are destined R $ 27 billion for works and services in areas most in need, especially in rural areas."

Attending the conference on rural development 710 delegates, elected in 317 municipalities and 20 regional conferences held throughout the Paraná.
Source: Nórcio Lucia, Brazil Agency reporter, edition: Lana Cristina.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Report of the Special Committee of the Forest Code will not require legal reserve of small property May 27, 2010

May 27, 2010

Brasília - Congressman Moacir Micheletto (PMDB-PR), chairman of the Special Commission for the Reform of the Brazilian Forest Code, added two points in the report will be presented on June 1 by Congressman Aldo Rebelo (PCdoB-SP). According to him, shall not be required legal reserve area in small farms, which currently ranges from 20% to 80% of total area, depending on the biome in which they are.

Micheletto said, according to the report, in areas with up to four fiscal modules, around 70 hectares, the areas can be consolidated as they are, without the need for reforestation. Furthermore, the document provides for the payment for environmental services, when the producer gets to preserve a forest area. "We want to let the farmer produce in peace," he said.

Changes in environmental legislation in force since 1965, were already being discussed by the government several months ago when the special commission was created last year. Among the main changes of consensus, are the authorization of planting in lowland areas that are already consolidated at the top of hills and slopes in reforestation and the compensation of the legal reserve required in other areas.
Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter Edition: Lana Cristina.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Rural credit: an increase of 26% confirms encourage to a sustainable agriculture May 27, 2010

May 27, 2010

Brasilia - With two months to the end of the 2009/2010 crop, the granting of credit to the rural sector is almost 26% higher than that applied in the same period the previous harvest, from R$ 57.6 billion to R$ 72 4 billion between April and July. Only for commercial farming were applied R$ 62.9 billion from July to April of 2009/2010 - 27% more than the same period in 2008/2009. For investment, the funds are from R$ 8 billion.


Between July 2009 and April 2010, the loan from the Incentive Program for Sustainable Agribusiness (Produsa, in Portuguese) was R$ 380 million, nearly five times more than the volume released during the same period the previous cycle. "These results indicate that farmers are increasingly prepared to adapt to sustainable development, including, from next season, a new investment program for agriculture, low carbon," says Agriculture Minister, Wagner Rossi.

In the same period considered above, the application of resources from the Employment Generation and Income Rural (Rural Proger), for the producer of medium size, is five times bigger than that invested in the 2008/2009 season. The consolidated data from the granting of credit through April indicate nearly R$ 2.5 billion, including funding and investment.

Costing and marketing

R$ 49.8 billion released for the costing and marketing have also benefited the producers who used the resources for storage. For marketing, this year, more than R$ 17 billion has been applied so far - an increase of 39.7% over the same period of 2009. Of this total, R$ 7.4 billion was earmarked for the Federal Government Loans (EGF) and R$ 4.7 billion in agribusiness credit.

Another R$ 643 million was directed to the Special Credit Line (LEC) in order to support the marketing of coffee, dairy, corn, wool, honey, pork and fruit. Emphasis on the productive chain of apple, peach, pineapple, passion fruit, peach and guava that has already received R$ 108 million this season by the LEC. The line is a tool to encourage, especially the agricultural industry of fruit juices and other derivatives.

Source: Deborah Pine, Press Office Ministry of Agriculture -Mapa.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Congressman discuss erradication of work conditions equivalent to slave labor May 27, 2010

May 27, 2010

Brasilia - The eradication of work conditions equivalent to slavery was debated yesterday (26) among lawmakers who attended the national meeting in Brasilia on the subject.

"We need tougher legislation capable of ending the question [work conditions equivalent to slavery]. That the case has at its center the question of expropriation of land, "said Congressman Paulo Rocha (PT-PA). The Proposed Amendment to the Constitution (PEC) 438 provides that in properties where there are workers in situations similar to slavery, will be the expropriation of land.

Congressman Moreira Mendes (PPS-RO) said the concept of work conditions equivalent to slavery is subjective. "The complicating factor is the definition of what work is analogous to slavery."

Senator Jose Nery (PSOL-PA) rejected the argument by Mr. Mendes and said that the Criminal Code is quite clear about the characterization of work analogous to slavery. "The Penal Code was able to characterize the slave labor, like the exhaustive journey that has led workers to death as in sugar cane plantations in Sao Paulo where there are workers who arrive to work ten or 12 hours a day."

Nery said that the Penal Code also features the work that slaves in appalling conditions to that in which the employee is subjected to a system of debt bondage.

Source: Roberta Lopes, Brazil Agency reporter, Issue: Rivadavia Severo.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Despite a record crop, GV of Brazilian Agricultural Production grow only 1.14% May, 12, 2010

May 14, 2010

Prices to producers fell significantly
See below
: April forecast for Gross Value of the Brazilian Agricultural Production is increase of only 1.14%
The Brazilian grain production this year expected to total 146.5 million tons, a record, up 9.4% compared to the crop obtained in 2009 - 133.9 million tons. The result should be 0.4% higher than the 2008 record of 145.9 million tonnes. In 2010, Paraná will once again become the largest producer of cereals, pulses and oilseeds in the country.

But the estimate of April recently released by the Ministry of Agriculture to the Gross Value of Agricultural Production Brazilian (VBP) in 2010 is of R$ 160.12 billion, a real change over the last year of just 1.14%. This increase is less than 50% of what had been expected last month, 2.32% (see the article below) and almost 10% below previous forecasts of private consulting firms (see "Agricultural income Brazilian back at pre -crisis "of 6:04:10 in Previous
News Feb/April 2010).
The crop forecast given in the Systematic Survey of Agricultural Production in April (fourth assessment), released on May, 6 by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).
IBGE provides for an increase of 0.1% compared to area planted last year, reaching 47.3 million hectares. Compared to 2009, for the three main crops - rice, corn and soybeans (representing 82.3% of the planted area) - the estimate is that there are variations of -5.0%, 5.9% and 6 5% respectively. According to IBGE, the production of corn and soybeans is expected to grow 4.0% and 19.2% respectively, while that of rice will decline 9.7%.

The regional distribution of grain production should be: South, 62 2 million tonnes, the Midwest, 51 million tonnes, Southeast, 16.5 million tons; Northeast, 12.9 million tons and North, 3.9 million tons. Comparing with the previous crop, a decline of 4.0% is estimated only in the Southeast. The others regions will have increments: North, 3.2%, Northeast, 9.6%, South, 18.7% and the Midwest, 4.4%.

The State of Paraná should return the position of the largest grain national producer, exceeding by 1.5 percentage point Mato Grosso, which last year took the lead, resulting from a Parana crop much affected by unfavorable weather conditions such as drought in early 2009, frosts in June and excessive rains in final period of winter crops.

The National Supply Company (Conab) also released its forecast for the grain harvest. According to it, in the 2009/2010 cycle must be produced 146.81 million tons, thus consolidating a new record (see report below).

The difference between the data published by IBGE and Conab is due to periods. The institute analyzes the harvest from January to December and the Conab assesment is based on the so-called crop year, which runs from August to July.

Source: Riomar Trinity, reporter Agency Brazil; edition: Juliana Andrade, and Eline Santos, Media Relations of MAPA. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Conab projected record crop two months to the end of the cycle
The even distribution of rainfall in areas of higher production and good yield of corn and soybeans continue to increase expectations for crop this season. The eighth survey of grain harvest 2009/2010, released by the National Supply Company (Conab), estimated production of 146.81 million tonnes, which should consolidate a new record with only two months to the end of this cycle.

This projection is 8.7% higher than the 135.13 million tons in 2008/2009 and 0.4% higher than the survey released last month. Soybeans and corn represent together about 122 million tons, or 83.1% of the entire crop.
The soybean is expected to reach 67.8 million tons, 18.7% or 10.7 million tonnes more than the previous cycle. But the corn should reach 54.18 million tons, an increase of 6.2%.
The total area planted with grains is 47.5 million hectares, a reduction of 172.1 thousand hectares over the previous cycle. The survey was done by Conab technicians who heard representatives of cooperatives and agricultural unions, public and private agencies in all states in the period 22-28 of April.

Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Talita Cavalcante. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

April forecast for Gross Value of the Brazilian Agricultural Production is increase of only 1.14%
The forecast in April of the Gross Value of the Brazilian Agricultural Production (VBP) in 2010 is $ 160.12 billion, according to estimate of the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture. Taking into account the inflation, the real growth over the past year is 1.14%. This increase is less than 50% of what had been expected last month, 2.32%. And almost 10% below previous forecasts of private consulting firms (see "Brazil's agricultural income back to pre-crisis level" of 06:04:10 in
News fev/abr2010).
Prices received by producers are on average lower this year than in 2009. The soybeans are 11.8% lower and corn, lower by 11.7%. The Coordinator of Strategic Planning of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply (MAPA), Jose Garcia Gasques, explains that the price reduction in products of the gross weight of agriculture - such as corn and soybeans - reflects the value of production.
"These two products represent 37.9% of the estimated value of agricultural production in April for the country and it certainly has strong impacts on the estimated value of this year," he says. For soybeans, the decrease in prices did not imply a fall in the value of production because the increase in production is expected to offset price reductions in 2010.
The study has shown that reduction in value of production in 2010 is composed of the following products: peanuts, 24.5%; rice, 16.4%; beans, 22.5%; tobacco leaves, 10.2%; corn, 8, 2%;, tomato, 19.9%; grape, 29.4%. In contrast, 11 products have elevated the value of production in 2010. The largest increases should occur in onion, 130.9%; wheat 37.6%; coffee, 15.9% and sugar cane, 7.4%. "These items combine higher prices and quantities produced in the expansion of production value in 2010," he says.

Increase in the South

The production figures show that the South region should have, this year, the biggest increase in value compared to 2009: 12.5%. Parana and Santa Catarina are responsible for this expansion, with increases in production value of 23.7% in Paraná, and 35.2% in Santa Catarina. Regions North and Midwest must register a reduced value of production.

Source: Eline Santos, Media Relations of MAP, with the Observatório.
Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Hyundai wants land in Brazil to ensure food security for the Korean population May 14, 2010

May 14, 2010

Company negotiates with governments of the States of Piauí, Maranhnao, Tocantins and Bahia the acquisition of 10.000 hectares to harvest in soybeans; goal is to export to Korea and ensure food security for its population.

At least nine other groups of Asian countries have visited the country in search of land, investment considered strategic.

Executives of the South Korean company Hyundai negotiate with state governments to buy land in Brazil in order to grow and export soybeans to South Korea. Company representatives visited last week the Piauí and in June they will meet with governments officials of Maranhao, Tocantins and Bahia.
The Koreans want to buy 10.000 hectares in Brazil, but still do not have timetable to close the deal. According to director of Hyundai Corporation in Brazil, Gi-Seob Kim, the project is "very recent".

This is not the only invested in the eastern Brazilian agribusiness. Since the beginning of the year, at least nine groups, including Koreans, Chinese and Indonesians, visited the country in search of land for cultivation and export. The investment is considered strategic to ensure food supplies to those countries that have extensive population and little arable land.
South Korea, for example, has only an area of arable land slightly smaller than the Brazilian State of Sergipe, to supply a population of 48.5 million people. According Gi-Seob Kim, several companies have purchased land in the country to export food overseas for some years.


China wants to influence commodity prices
Despite the Korean onslaught, those most interested in purchasing land in Brazil have been the Chinese, the largest importers of soybeans in the world.

According to the director of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Brazil-China, Kevin Tang, in recent months six Chinese groups showed interest in buying land in Brazil, three of them with state participation.


The government of Bahia, looking at this opportunity, this week will lead to China a delegation of entrepreneurs exploring business in agriculture.

According to Tang, the intention of the Chinese is not only to ensure supply, but also ensure that the country will not be at the mercy of the industry and trading companies and will try to have more control over the price of commodities.
Source: Hass Estelita Carazzai Luiza and Flag, the Agencia Folha, Matheus Magenta, the Agencia Folha, in Salvador, with the Observatório. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.
To read the full report (for subscribers of the Folha de São Paulo newspaper and the UOL), go to http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/fsp/dinheiro/fi0905201008.htm

FAO concerned about land purchases by foreigners affecting the lives of local people May 14, 2010

May 14, 2010

The onslaught of Asian companies in agriculture does not focus on just Brazil. Japanese, South Koreans and Chinese have already bought or plan to buy land in South America, Africa and parts of Asia itself in order to grow soybeans, corn and other products. Since 2003, a Japanese company has 1250 ha of farmland in Argentina, where it produces soybeans and corn, wich are exported to Japan. All their employees are Japanese.
In Africa, the presence of similar investments by China have been characterized by experts as "neocolonialism" and is subject to concerns of FAO (UN Food and Agriculture Organization). For Jacques Diouf, director general of the organization, it is necessary to prevent these businesses affect local populations.

For experts, however, this type of problem should not happen in Brazil. André Cunha, PhD in economics at Unicamp (the State University of Campinas, São Paulo), states that the entry of foreigners is easier when the state is less structured, which is not the case of Brazil.

In the opinion of Paul Vizentini, professor of international relations at UFRGS (Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul), Brazil may even benefit from this type of investment, as it has lots of idle arable land.
Technological development of Brazilian agribusiness scares Chinese
The high level of organization of the Brazilian agribusiness can also block the entry of foreigners in the business. The Secretary of Agriculture of Goias State, Leonardo Veloso, says that Chinese have shown interest to acquire land in the state but they are "scared" with the technological development they have faced in the industry.
One option for the purchase of land has been the formation of partnerships with Brazilians, says the president of Apex (the Brazilian Association of Export Promotion and Investment), Alessandro Teixeira. The problem of acquiring land, he says, is that agricultural production in China is quite different than that of Brazil, from the type of crops and land to the farming technology, which complicates the management of the business.

Source: Folha (EHC and LB). Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Brazilian Government provides 100 bi to agribusiness and only 20 bi for family farming May 11, 2010

May 14, 2010

The Brazilian government intends to allocate approximately $ 120 billion in credit to the Agricultural and Livestock Plan 2010/2011 harvest, according to Agriculture Minister, Wagner Rossi. Only to agricultural business are provided about $ 100 billion. The figures follow similar proportions to the harvest of 2009/2010, when were allocated R $ 93 billion to agribusiness and $ 15 billion to the family farm.

For the secretary general of the Abras (Brazilian Association for Agrarian Reform), Joey Juliano, the allocation of resources thus reaffirms the government's option for agribusiness.

"This reaffirms the proportion of credit option government by agribusiness. There is a small and big politics and land reform policy is small. Both small household production as the agrarian reform consider the government's policy weak, pious. "
The resources of the government should boost the monoculture of sugar cane, soybean, eucalyptus trees, and livestock. Joey complains that option.

"Large crops expel people, pollute, etc., [but] we are moving to do so: eucalyptus plantations, sugar cane, livestock. In other words, Brazil is specialized in products with low added value. The form of globalization and integration to world markets is peripheral and subordinate. In my view, this greatly reduces the prospects for an independent future. "
Projections from the IBGE (Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics) show while soybean production this season is expected to grow 19% compared to 2009, rice production fell nearly 9.7%.

Source: Radioagência NP. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Use of pesticides in the country breaks record May 14, 2010

May 14, 2010

Brazilian agriculture has never used as pesticides as in 2009. Although the market had shrunk by 7% in revenue compared to 2008, to $ 6.62 billion, the volume of products used in crops jumped by 7.6% and surpassed the first time, the mark of 1 million tons sold in a single year.

Agrochemical industries negotiated in 2009 a volume of 1.06 million tons - a year earlier had sold 986,500 tonnes, according to the National Association of Industrial Products for the Defence (Sindag). That means the equivalent of a use of 22.3 kilograms of pesticides per hectare in 2009/10, a volume 7.8% higher than would have applied in 2008/9 (20.7 kg per hectare), considering the sale of 986,500 tonnes in 2008.

One reason for the increase in consumption is that the producer was a little more capitalized than in previous years and that the harvest is in final stage of cropping. With more resources, it was possible to increase the use of "technology" in crops, which contributed to a record harvest of 146.3 million tons, even with a reduction of 74,000 hectares planted and total 47.6 million hectares.

The category of herbicide used to control the weed infestation was the most sold in 2009, with a volume of 632.2 thousand tons, an increase of 9.9%. The drop in price of glyphosate - the main herbicide marketed - meant that revenue in this category retreat 21.7% to $ 2.5 billion compared to 2008, according to Sindag.

But the highlight in sales was on account of fungicides. The increased incidence of soybean rust in the South and Midwest increased the demand for 127,800 tons of fungicides, an increase of 14.8%. In revenue, the category was one of the few to have a positive result, an increase of 13.8% and revenue of $ 1.8 billion.

Soy has also been responsible for the increase in the total consumption of pesticides and to avoid an even worse performance in industry revenue last year. The 23.2 million hectares sown with grain received 530,100 tonnes of pesticides, increasing by 18% the volume consumed. Given the increasing demand, especially fungicide sales for soybean producers, earned the industry $ 3.12 billion, an increase of 2.6%.

The demand for pesticides by producers of corn was almost stable in 2009 at 143,700 tonnes (down 0.4%). Have the producers of sugarcane declined by 8.6% the use of chemicals to 70,900 tons last year, while cotton farmers use amounted to 69.6 thousand tons, 13.8% more than last year . The increase in cotton occurs even with the planted area has remained virtually stable at 836,000 hectares in 2009/10.

Source: Alexandre Inacio, Valor, with the Observatório. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Government wants the country's leadership in Palm oil production May 14, 2010

May 14, 2010

The National Program for Palm Oil, launched on 6 pp. in Thomas Açú, Pará, wants to make the country the world's largest producer of vegetable oil in the coming years, ensuring the supply of renewable fuel.

The program foresees the expansion of planting area for the plant to produce fuels from renewable energy. Palm oil is also known in Brazil as dendê.

The project, which aims to increase by almost 50% production by 2014, from 80,000 to 130,000 hectares, will be implemented in 44 municipalities in North and Northeast.

Currently, the Pará State leads the production of palms in the country, with 80,000 hectares planted in the region of rivers Capim, Guama and Tocantins.

The processing of palm oil into biodiesel is made by Petrobras, which is building three industrial plants in the region, adding to the nine existing in the state. The National Program for Palm Oil provides for immediate participation of 900 partners in family agriculture, and 300 medium and large producers.

The Brazilian Minister of Agriculture, Wagner Rossi, said that the palm tree produces ten times more oil than soybeans in the same area, so you can produce five tons of oil per hectare each year. With this, a producer to plant 10 hectares of palm can get an average income of R$ 2,000 per month at current prices.

According to Wagner Rossi, only two countries, Thailand and Indonesia, account for 90% of world production of palm oil. He says that with the program, the Brazilian participation in that market will increase.

"It will provide the possibility of multiplying the culture in a very large area in Brazil. We have at least, at the moment, 29 million hectares available, where the palm could be used efficiently. This includes a large part of the Brazilian Northeast and all the Northern States. "

The increase in planted area will not be done with deforestation, but taking advantage of already degraded areas, according to Environment Minister, Izabella Teixeira.

"The program comes with clear guidelines in terms of what areas could be utilized in the expansion of this culture. It is a program built on a basis to prohibit logging in native forests for agricultural expansion associated with oil palm."

Environmentalists agree that generate renewable fuel is important for the region. But according to the coordinator of the Institute of Man and Environment (Imazon), Paulo Amaral, since the project will involve small producers, it deserves some care.

"A strong monitoring system, that does not cause further pressure on areas of forest cover, should observe the recovery of these areas already open. And you have to consider technical assistance and a guarantee of purchase of this production for a small producer can feel safe to enter such a program. "

Source: Leandro Martinez, reporter of Radio Nacional da Amazônia; edition: Lily Beraldo; with the Observatório. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

Funding for restoration of degraded areas does not take off May 14, 2010

May 14, 2010

The agribusiness hired between July 2009 and March this year, R$ 56.3 billion of its R$ 93 billion planned in the Agricultural and Livestock Plan 2009/2010 to finance the current crop. The volume represents an increase of nearly R$ 12 billion - or 26% - compared to R$ 44.5 billion funded in the same period the previous harvest. The balance was made by the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture.

Some news this season, as the programs for storage of alcohol and recovery of degraded areas, have not had the expected result. Whereas the first borrowed only R$ 32.6 million of its R$ 2.3 billion available, the other released R$ 330.4 million from a total of R$ 1.5 billion.

In an interview to Agência Brazil last month, Agriculture Minister, Wagner Rossi, said the high interest rates that hindered the taking of these lines of credit will be reduced for next season (2010/2011).

Since the family farm, besides taking more resources in the current crop, yet only faster. The proportion released between July 2009 and March 2010 increased 56.5% to 57.9% over the same period the previous harvest, with the release of R$ 8.6 billion of its R$ 15 billion expected.

Source: Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter; edition: Vinicius Doria. Translation by Google Translator with copy-desk by Maurício Galinkin, editor of the AgribusinessWatch.

China's government wants 100,000 ha of Brazilian land to produce its own soybeans April 22, 2010

April 22, 2010

Action would take place through a Chinese state company, with Brazilian groups associated

Source: the newspaper “O Estado de S. Paulo”

The state-owned Chinese Chongqing Grain Group plans to invest US$ 300 million (R$ 525 million) purchase of 100 thousand hectares of land in western Bahia, with the goal of producing soybeans to the Brazilian market and Chinese. The project has funding from China Development Bank (CDB), which will fund 60% of the cost. The remainder will be paid by the company, linked to the municipality of Chongqing.

Company representatives and state bank joined the entourage of President Hu Jintao in Brazil last week and presented the project in the seminar business in BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) held in Rio. The group continues in Brazil seeking a local partner for investment. The goal is to finalize the purchase of land until July and produce 250 thousand tons of soybeans per year. Report published yesterday by the Chongqing News, connected to city government, says the acreage could reach in a second stage 200 thousand hectares, with total investment of U.S. $ 842 million (R$ 1.47 billion).

The Local Law Limit.

The Chinese interest in buying land to grow soybeans in Brazil has grown in recent months, especially after the approval by the Commission on Constitution and Justice of the House of Representatives a bill that limits the size to 1,140 hectares of farms to be bought by foreigners in the region called “Legal Amazonia”, an area which covers the states of Amazonas, Acre, Rondônia, Roraima, Mato Grosso, Pará, Amapá, Tocantins and part of Maranhão. Approved in October, the text was sent to the Senate, where it awaits a vote.

Lawyer Heloisa Di Cunto, a partner office Duarte Garcia, Caselli Guimaraes e Terra, says that since September has increased the number of visits for Chinese customers interested in buying farms in Brazil. "People are rushing to buy the land before the law is passed," says Di Cunto, who heads the department's office responsible for China. Currently, the lawyer advises two Chinese groups that are doing business for soybean production in Mato Grosso, but will not reveal their names because of confidentiality agreements.

For years the Chinese have discussed the possibility of planting soybeans in Brazil, but business began to take shape only recently. China is the largest importer of soybeans and the main destination of Brazilian exports of the product, which ranks second in sales in the country, second only to iron ore.

Last year, Brazil exported U.S. $ 11.42 billion in soybeans, of which $ 6.34 billion were destined for China, equivalent to 55.5% in shipments of the commodity. Besides ensuring the supply of an essential product, the purchase of land is intended to avoid the intermediation of large trading companies operating in that sector: Cargill, Bunge, ADM and Louis Dreyfus.

Since at least 2004, Chinese importers try to buy Brazilian soybeans directly from farmers, without success. "The big trading companies invest in the harvest and control this trade," says Di Cunto. These companies provide financing to producers and receiving in exchange a guarantee of delivery of the harvest. With the acquisition of land, the Chinese come to control the production and can directly export the products to China without going through the intermediation of large trading companies.

In evaluating Di Cunto, the bill passed the House creates an "unnecessary protectionism" and may reduce foreign direct investment in agricultural production.

To better understand:
Current limit of individually foreign property of land is 3.8 thousand hectares;
The bill limiting the purchase of land by foreigners in the Amazon was made in 2001 by congressman Nilson Mourão (PT-AC) and the then congressman José Dirceu (PT-SP). In the explanatory memorandum, the MPs claimed that there were 34 thousand rural properties in the hands of foreigners in the region, with an area equivalent to 4 million hectares.

Current legislation allows foreigners to buy land in the Amazon in the limit of up to 3,800 hectares, provided that the company made in Brazil - no matter where the origin of capital is domestic or foreign.

The Committee on Constitution and Justice of the House passed in October substitute by congressman José Genoino (PT-SP). At the time of voting the project, Genoino said that foreigners acquire an area of over 1140 hectares before the passage of the bill would keep the properties as long as productive.

The project did not need to be approved by the full House because the matter can be considered permanently by the Constitution and Justice, which approved it unanimously. Now lack the Senate vote.

Only the absence of moral principles can justify the massive sale of land for foreign owners April, 22, 2010

April 22, 2010

Stop land grabbing now!

Say NO to the principles of “responsible” agro-enterprise investment promoted by the World Bank:

alert from of hundreds of NGOs against the World Bank's attempt to establish a "socially acceptable" criteria for this type of purchase

In a statement today signed by NGOs Fian, Grain, Research Action Network Land and Via Campesina and supported so far by the organizations listed at the end of the text.

State and private investors, from Citadel Capital to Goldman Sachs, are leasing or buying up tens of millions of hectares of farmlands in Asia, Africa and Latin America for food and fuel production. This land grabbing is a serious threat for the food sovereignty of our peoples and the right to food of our rural communities. In response to this new wave of land grabbing, the World Bank (WB) is promoting a set of seven principles to guide such investments and make them  successful. The FAO, IFAD and UNCTAD have agreed to join the WB in collectively pushing these principles. [1]

Their starting point is the fact that the current rush of private sector interest to buy up farmland is risky. After all, the WB has just finalised a study showing the magnitude of this trend and its central focus on transferring rights over agricultural land in developing countries to foreign investors. The WB seems convinced that all private capital flows to expand global agribusiness operations where they  have not yet taken hold are good and must be allowed to proceed so that the corporate sector can extract more wealth from the countryside. Since these investment deals are hinged on massive privatisation and transfer of land rights, the WB wants them to meet a few criteria to reduce the risks of social backlash: respect the rights of existing users of land, water and other resources (by paying them off); protect and improve livelihoods at the household and community level (provide jobs and social services); and do no harm to the environment. These are the core ideas behind the WB's seven principles for socially acceptable land grabbing.

These principles will not accomplish their ostensible objectives. They are rather a move to try to  legitimize land grabbing. Facilitating the long-term corporate (foreign and domestic) takeover of rural people's farmlands is completely unacceptable no matter which guidelines are followed. The WB's principles, which would be entirely voluntary, aim to distract from the fact that today's global food crisis, marked by more than 1 billion people going hungry each day, will not be solved by large scale industrial agriculture, which virtually all of these land acquisitions aim to promote.

Land grabbing has already started to intensify in many countries over  the past 10-15 years with the adoption of deregulation policies, trade and investment agreements, and market oriented governance reforms. The recent food and financial crises have provided the impetus for a surge in  land grabbing by governments and financial investors trying to secure agricultural production capacity and future food supplies as well as assets that are sure to fetch high returns.  Wealthy  governments have sought to lease agricultural lands for long periods of time to feed their populations and industries back home.  At the  same time, corporations are seeking long term economic concessions for plantation agriculture to produce agro-fuels, rubber, oils, etc. These trends are also visible in coastal areas, where land, marine resources and water bodies are being sold, leased, or developed for tourism to corporate investors and local elites, at the expense of artisanal fishers and coastal communities. One way or the other, agricultural lands and forests are being diverted away from smallhold producers, fishers and pastoralists to commercial  purposes, and leading to displacement, hunger and poverty.

With the current farmland grab,  corporate driven globalisation has reached a new phase  that will undermine peoples’ self-determination, food sovereignty and survival as never before. The WB and many governments see land and rights to land, as a crucial asset base for corporations seeking high returns on capital since land is not only the basis for producing food and raw materials for the new energy economy, but also a way to capture  water.  Land is being revalued on purely economic terms by the WB, governments and corporations and in the process, the multi-functionality, and ecological, social and cultural values of land are being negated.  It is thus more important than ever that these resources are defended from corporate and state predation and instead be made available to those who need them to feed themselves and others sustainably, and to survive as communities and societies.

Land grabbing – even where there are no related forced evictions - denies land for local communities, destroys livelihoods, reduces the political space for peasant oriented agricultural policies and distorts markets towards increasingly concentrated agribusiness interests and global trade rather than towards sustainable peasant/smallhold production for local and national markets.   Land grabbing will  accelerate eco-system destruction and the climate crisis because of the type of monoculture oriented, industrial agricultural production that many of these “acquired” lands will be used for. Promoting or permitting land grabbing violates the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and  undermines the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Land grabbing ignores the principles adopted by the International Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development (ICARRD) in 2006 and the recommendations made by the International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD).

Land grabbing must be immediately stopped. The WB’s principles attempt to create the illusion that land grabbing can proceed without disastrous consequences to peoples, communities, eco-systems and the climate. This illusion is false and misleading. Farmer's and indigenous peoples organisations, social movements and civil society groups largely agree that what we need instead is to: 

1. Keep land in the hands of local communities and implement genuine agrarian reform in order to ensure equitable access to land and natural resources.

2. Heavily support agro-ecological peasant, smallhold farming, fishing and pastoralism, including participatory research and training programmes  so that small-scale food providers  can produce ample, healthy and safe food for everybody.

3. Overhaul farm and trade policies to embrace food sovereignty and support local and regional markets that people can participate in and benefit from.

4. Promote community-oriented food and farming systems hinged on local people's control over land, water and biodiversity. Enforce strict mandatory regulations that curb the access of corporations and other powerful actors (state and private) to agricultural, coastal and grazing lands, forests, and wetlands.

No principles in the world can justify land grabbing!

April 22, 2010
Fian - Grain - Land Research Action Network – Vía Campesina

Statement co-sponsored by:

- African Biodiversity Network (ABN)
- Anywaa Survival Organisation, Ethiopia
- Association Centre Ecologique Albert Schweitzer (Ceas Burkina), Burkina Faso
- Coordination Nationale des Usagers des Ressources Naturelles du Bassin du Niger au Mali, Mali
- CNCR (Conseil National de Concertation et de Coopération des Ruraux), Sénégal
- Collectif pour la Défense des Terres Malgaches TANY, Madagascar
- Confédération Paysanne du Congo, Congo RDC
- Copagen (Coalition pour la protection du patrimoine génétique africaine)
- East African Farmers Federation (EAFF)
- Eastern and Southern Africa Small Scale Farmers' Forum (Esaff)
- Economic Justice Network of Foccisa, Southern Africa
- Food Security, Policy and Advocacy Network (FoodSpan), Ghana
- Fora/Desc, Niger
- Ghana Civil Society Coalition on Land (Cicol), Ghana
- Haki Ardhi, Tanzania
- Inades-Formation
- Ipacc (Indigenous People of Africa Co-ordinating Committee)
- London International Oromo Workhshop Group, Ethiopia
- Roppa (Réseau des Organisations Paysannes et des Producteurs de l'Afrique de l'Ouest)
- Synergie Paysanne, Bénin

- Aliansi Gerakan Reforma Agraria (Agra), Indonesia
- All Nepal Peasants' Association (Anpa), Nepal
- Alternative Agriculture Network, Thailand
- Alternate Forum for Research in Mindanao (Afrim), Philippines
- Andhra Pradesh Vyvasaya Vruthidarula Union (APVVU), India
- Anti Debt Coalition (KAU), Indonesia
- Aquila Ismail, Pakistan
- Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)
- Bantad Mountain Range Conservation Network, Thailand
- Biothai (Thailand)
- Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia, Cambodia
- Centre for Agrarian Reform, Empowerment and Transformation, Inc., Philippines
- Centro Saka, Inc., Philippines
- Cidse, Lao PDR
- Daulat Institute, Indonesia
- Delhi Forum, India
- Focus on the Global South, India, Thailand, Philippines
- Foundation for Ecological Recovery/Terra, Thailand
- Four Regions Slum Network, Thailand
- Friends of the Earth Indonesia (Walhi), Indonesia
- Hasatl, Timor Leste
- Imse, India
- Indian Social Action Forum (Insaf), India
- Indonesian Fisher folk Union (SNI), Indonesia
- Indonesian Human Rights Committee for Social Justice (Ihcs), Indonesia
- Indonesian Peasant' Union (SPI). Indonesia
- International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (Icsf), India
- Kelompok Studi dan Pengembangan Prakarsa Masyarakat/Study Group for the People Initiative Development (KSPPM), Indonesia
- Kiara-Fisheries Justice Coalition of Indonesia, Indonesia
- Klongyong and Pichaipuben Land Cooperatives, Thailand
- Land Reform Network of Thailand, Thailand
- Lokoj Institute, Bangladesh
- Marag, India
- Melanesian Indigenous Land Defense Alliance (Milda)
- My Village, Cambodia
- National Fisheries Solidarity Movement (Nafso), Sri Lanka
- National Fishworkers Forum, India
- National Forum of Forest Peoples and Forest Workers, India
- Northeastern Land Reform Network, Thailand
- Northern Peasant Federation, Thailand
- NZNI, Mongolia
- Paragos-Pilipinas, Philippines
- Pastoral Peoples Movement, India
- PCC, Mongolia
- People's Coalition for the Rights to Water (KruHA), Indonesia
- Permatil (Permaculture), Timor-Leste
- Perween Rehman, Pakistan
- Project for Ecological Awareness Building (EAB), Thailand
- Roots for Equity, Pakistan
- Sintesa Foundation, Indonesia
- Social Action for Change, Cambodia
- Solidarity Workshop, Bangladesh
- Southern Farmer Federation, Thailand
- Sustainable Agriculture Foundation, Thailand
- The NGO Forum on Cambodia, Cambodia
- Village Focus Cambodia, Cambodia
- Village Focus International, Lao PDR
- World Forum of Fisher Peoples (WFFP), Sri Lanka

Latin America
- Asamblea de Afectados Ambientales, México
- Bios, Argentina
- Coeco-Ceiba (Amigos de la Tierra), Costa Rica
- Fian Comayagua, Honduras
- Grupo Semillas, Colombia
- Red de Biodiversidad de Costa Rica, Costa Rica
- Red en Defensa del Maiz, México
- REL-Uita
- Sistema de la Investigación de la Problemática Agraria del Ecuador (SIPAE), Ecuador

- Both Ends, Netherlands
- CADTM, Belgium
- Centre Tricontinental – Cetri, Belgium
- CNCD-11.11.11, Belgium
- Comité belgo-brasileiro, Belgium
- Entraide et Fraternité, Belgium
- Fian Austria
- Fian Belgium
- Fian France
- Fian Netherlands
- Fian Norway
- Fian Sweden
- Fugea, Belgium
- Guatemala Solidarität, Austria
- SOS Faim – Agir avec le Sud, Belgium
- The Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity, Italy
- The Transnational Institute (TNI), Netherlands
- Uniterre, Switzerland

North America
- Agricultural Missions, Inc. (AMI), USA
- Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach, USA
- Cumberland Countians for Peace & Justice, USA
- Grassroots International, USA
- National Family Farm Coalition, USA
- Network for Environmental & Economic Responsibility, United Church of Christ, USA
- Pete Von Christierson, USA
Plant (Partners for the Land & Agricultural Needs of Traditional Peoples), USA
- Raj Patel, Visiting Scholar, Center for African Studies, University of California at Berkeley, USA
- The Institute for Food and Development Policy (Food First), USA
- Why Hunger, USA

- Fian International
- Friends of the Earth International
- Grain
- La Vía Campesina
- Land Research Action Network (Lran)
- World Alliance of Mobile Indigenous People (Wamip)
- World Rainforest Movement (WRM)

For a change, soybeans producers of MT wants to renegotiate debt ... April, 22, 2010

April, 22, 2010
Soybeans producers from Mato Grosso want to renegotiate debt, arguing that crop productivity was lower in this season 2009/2010 and the anticipated sales volume decreased, affecting the income.

Source: newspaper “O Estado de São Paulo”

Soybeans growers from Mato Grosso want to renegotiate debt, arguing that crop productivity was lower in this season 2009/2010 and the anticipated sales volume decreased, affecting the income. "The crop yield this year was very different, ranging between 45 to 50 bags, because the crops were affected by various microclimates," says the president of the Association of Producers of Corn and Soybeans from Mato Grosso (APROSOJA), Glauber Silveira.
The association advocates the equalization of the debts of the sector, with changes in interest rates and the recalculation of values. The total stock of debt in the state is estimated at R$ 11 billion (equivalent to, appr., US$ 6 bi) - about 70% correspond to rates of investment. "The aggravating factor is that most of this debt has interest rates above 10%. But there are cases of up to 15%." Silveira explains that "for the producer who managed to sell at least half of the season crop, with average yield of 50 bags (60 kg) per hectare, the crop did not result in losses."
The calculation of APROSOJA indicates that the farmer with this profile had an average return of $ 35/hectare. He said this is the situation of about 50% of soybeans producers in the State. "The problem is that the average stock of debt is for R$ 500/hectare (equivalent to, appr., US$ 270/ha) in the state, above the producer's profitability, even in the best scenario," says Silveira.

R$ 40 was the price of bag (60kg) of soybeans between August and October R$ 28 to R$ 30 is the value of the bag today, after the completion of the harvest.

Senator Silva says that government and agribusiness want to deconstruct the environmental legislation April 22, 2010

April 22, 2010

By Danilo Macedo, Brazil Agency reporter, copy-desk in Portuguese by Rivadavia Severo. Copy-desk in English by Maurício Galinkin, from the AgribusinessWatch

Brasília - Senator Marina Silva (PV-AC) running for the presidency by the Green Party (PV), said the government and agribusiness will "deconstruct" the environmental legislation. What - stressed the Senator - will lead to a general collapse in the industry. She spoke at the seminar "The Future of the Forest Code in the Face of Sustainability of agribusiness," done by the Brazilian Biodiversity Fund (Funbio).

For the former environment minister, it is necessary to create a "positive agenda" that join government, society and sectors of the area to generate to "gather together of the environment and agricultural production." She argued, however, that the discourse of some representatives of the agricultural sector is too old, from the begining of the last century.

"Agribusiness need to upgrade to remain competitive in the new parameters of the 21st century. There is no question about its strategic importance, but the need is for its modernization and protection of the environment for the good of the industry. "

The senator said that the discussion of changes in the Brazilian Forest Code in an election year, as is being done in Congress, is a mistake, because it will contaminate the discussion.

Marina also said that in Brazilian politics is the custom of turning into a consensus on all topics that do not want to be solved.

"For everything that will not resolve, the first thing you do is to create a consensus. Political reform, education, security, everything is a consensus, but consensus hollow, which has no clear ideas. "

Slave labor decrease in 2009, but increases the conflicts over land in traditional communities grows April 22, 2010

April 22, 2010

Source: Daniel Mello, Brazil Agency reporter, copy-desk in Portuguese: Lily Beraldo.
Translation and copy-desk in English: Mauricio Galinkin, from the AgribusinessWatch

São Paulo - recorded data of slave labor by the Pastoral Land Commission (CPT) decreased in 2009. The Conflicts in the Countryside Report, released last 15 of April by the organization, points out that in 2008 were 280 records of slavery, against 240 last year.
The number of workers rescued was also lower in 2009: 4,283 people.
Of these, 715 were in Rio de Janeiro, state with the largest number of rescued. In the previous year were released in 5,226 workers across the country.
The Southeast region led the number released. According to CPT, the region accounts for 37.2% of the redeemed, followed by the Northeast, with 20.9%.
The commission, however, warns that the numbers reflect the intense surveillance conducted in the Center-South and not necessarily the number of people working as slaves. "The North continued to lead the number of slave identified (but supervised only by half) and returned to head the ranking of the number of people involved in these cases," says the entity.
According to the report, last year, 2,423 people were involved in allegations of slave labor, followed by the Southeast with 1,605 involved.
In relation to overexploitation and failure to comply with labor legislation in the field, there was also decline in the index were 45 records last year, less than half of the 93 recorded in 2008.
Growing conflicts over land in traditional communities

Increased in 2009 by land conflicts, especially those related to traditional communities. According to the aforementioned report of the CPT, last year there were 854 land-related conflicts, while in 2008 were recorded 751 occurrences of this type. In this category are included eviction, deportation, destruction of property and gunmen added to actions like occupations and encampments.
Regarding violence in the countryside, there is a reduction in the number of murders, from 27 in 2008 to 24, in 2009, but an increase in other forms of violence including torture - from six cases in 2008 to 71 last year. The total number of all types of conflict in 1,184 was in 2009 against 1,170 in the previous year.
According to CPT, draws attention that the conflicts of 2009 involved large areas of land: 15,116,590 hectares. This number is the highest recorded in the series since 2000. In 2008, conflicts involved 6,568,755 acres.
The large amount of land involved is indicative of struggles by traditional territories.
"These are areas that communities are being pressed to be privatized and the local groups trying to preserve," said the secretary of the national coordination of the CPT, Antônio Canuto.
For the geographer, Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), Carlos Porto Gonçalves, traditional communities are taking the fight to land at a time when the social movements weakened to mobilize.
The slowdown in fighting occurred, in teacher evaluation, due to disappointment with the policy of the government's agrarian reform and the success of social policies and income transfer.
"These perspectives [of social movements against the current government] are frustrated. On the other hand, successful social policies have taken the power of movements to make recalls", he said.
States that stood out last year by the number of occurrences of conflicts over land were Pará, and São Paulo with 160, 114 cases.
Porto Gonçalves points out that these data are relative, because they do not consider the size of the rural population in each state. In evaluation of the expert, the states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul enroll significant numbers of rural violence are analyzed in proportion to the size of the rural areas. 24 registered e 29 occurrences, respectively, of such violence, according to the CPT report.

In India, Wal-Mart Goes to the Farm

April 22, 2010

By Vikas Bajaj, The New York Times

HAIDER NAGAR, India — At first glance, the vegetable patches in this north Indian village look no different from the many small, spare farms that dot the country.

But up close, visitors can see some curious experiments: insect traps made with reusable plastic bags; bamboo poles helping bitter gourd grow bigger and straighter; and seedlings germinating from plastic trays under a fine net.

These are low-tech innovations, to be sure. But they are crucial to the goals of the benefactor — Wal-Mart — that supplied them.

Two years after Wal-Mart came to India, it is trying to do to agriculture here what it has done to industries around the world: change business models by using its hyper-efficient practices to improve productivity and speed the flow of goods.

Not everyone is happy about the company’s presence here. Many Indian activists and policy makers abhor big-box retailing, fearing that it will drive India’s millions of shopkeepers out of business. Some legislators are suspicious of the company’s motives. The government still does not allow Wal-Mart Stores and other foreign companies to sell directly to consumers.

But Wal-Mart is persisting because its effort in India is critical to its global growth strategy. Confronted with saturated markets in the United States and other developed countries, the company needs to establish a bigger presence in emerging markets, like India, where modern stores make up just 5 percent of the country’s retail industry.
To read the complete article, click

Brazilian Agricultural Income back to pre-crisis level April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

Driven by good performance of the crops of coffee and sugar cane, income in 2010 should be $ 10.1 billion higher than last year

The double sugar-cane coffee will ensure the growth of farm income this year and the return of revenues from the field to pre-crisis level. Among grains, cotton, coffee, sugar and orange producers are pocketing approximately U.S. $ 100 billion in 2010 with the sale of the season, in the accounts of RC Consultants.

In 2009, total revenue was R$ 164.9 billion (around US$ 95 bi) and in 2008 from R$ 174.2 billion (almost US$ 100 bi). This year, sugar cane and coffee, together, will contribute R$ 10.1 billion for revenue growth. The figure almost equals the loss of rural income that occurred in 2009 because of the crisis.

Unlike past years when the grain, supported by soybeans and corn, were responsible for the expansion of farm income, now two permanent crops, sugarcane and coffee, are the stars of the season.

Prices of sugarcane are high because of reduced supply of sugar in the international market. Where coffee, despite the bumper harvest, world stocks are low and increasing consumption. In soybeans, abundant harvests in key producers threw down the prices.
"The year will be more favorable to the permanent crops," says the partner responsible for consulting and projections, Fabio Silveira. In a series begun in 1994, he notes that the most common behavior of agricultural income was the expansion of revenue decline in grain and permanent crops, those that are planted once and harvested for many years. This year, the picture was reversed.

The projected income for cane is R$ 34.1 billion, an increase of R$ 7.1 billion compared with 2009, according to the consultancy study, which considers production data from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) and wholesale prices surveyed by the Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV).

For coffee, the perspective is that the revenue reaches R$ 18.9 billion, an increase of R$ 3 billion over 2009. Meanwhile, the incomes of soybeans and maize are shrinking R$ 2.3 billion and R$ 1.3 billion, respectively.

Effect on the Hinterland

The change in the dynamics of agricultural income, from soybeans to sugar cane and coffee, already has an impact on trade in the hinterland cities. In Ribeirão Preto, for example, located within the State of Sao Paulo and is the main hub of production of sugarcane in the country, the housing market is in full swing.

"In December, we sold a blend of standard medium with 310 sites in just eight hours," says Andre Lopes, commercial director of the Group WTB, real estate developer. In mid-March, the company launched a blend of high standard with 180 plots costing on average R$ 200 thousand each, and has sold 80% of the stock.

Lopes says that most buyers are linked directly or indirectly to the business of sugar and alcohol. The producer of cane Zaccherini Andrew, 37, of which 15 in the biofuels industry, says he bought in the last six months half a dozen plots of land. "I'll build a land and the others are for investment." He stressed that time was that the cane sugar was not as favorable one years.

Marco Mattar, president of builder Trisul, is another entrepreneur who attests to the good performance of the property market in the region. He says that in late 2008, launched two apartment buildings of high standard, range from R$ 500 thousand. "In crisis, sales have stopped, but now with the momentum of the good phase of sugar cane, is almost all sold."

Luiz Feijo, commercial director of the New Holland tractor manufacturer, says that in the short term, the market for tractors destined for sugar cane is the one showing the highest increase in sales volume.

Werner Santos, director of sales for John Deere, one of the largest manufacturers of agricultural machinery, the fact that the market was hot in the first two months of this year.

Data from the Brazilian Association of Machinery Industry (Abimaq) showed a significant increase of 28% in the number of units sold in January and February, compared to the same period of 2009. "The alcohol sector returned to invest in machines," celebrates.


Trade in cities located in coffee producers areas are also piggybacking on the good performance of agriculture. Varginha, for example, a municipality in southern Minas Gerais, where coffee is pillar of the local economy, car dealerships record sales growth for farmers, who already spend on behalf of the crop is beginning to be harvested.

Resale Callis, VW, sales of utilities, mostly to farmers, in the first quarter grew almost 40% over the same period in 2009 and 130% over the same months of 2008. "In one day, I sold two utilities that were paid with money obtained through the Ballot Rural Producer (CPR) of the Bank of Brazil," says retail consultant Victor Eduardo da Silva.

In Patrocínio, coffee-producing region of the Cerrado Mineiro, the stores also are preparing to pocket the income from the harvest. Research of the Chamber of Shopkeepers (CDL) from the city reveals that business trade will expand in the coming months, 20% stocks of goods, mainly electronics and appliances. They also plan to hire 300 temporary workers to meet demand.
Source: Marcia De Chiara - O Estado de S. Paulo
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

Countries should resume discussion on the use of ethanol, says Ipea (governmental think-tank) April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

See also other news about ethanol:
- U.S. producers launch campaign against Brazilian ethanol
- Global crisis and low prices have reduced investments in the sugar cane
- Production of sugarcane is expected to grow in Mato Grosso

Brasília - The ethanol producing countries should resume at any moment the discussions on the feasibility of cultivation of cane sugar for the production of hydrated alcohol - particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean - and its international marketing.

Who bet this thesis are the technicians of the Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA), Pedro Silva Barros and Giorgio Romano Schutte, who have done recent research on The Geopolitics of Ethanol.

For them, the global financial crisis, initiated in September 2008, was primarily responsible for taking the discussion of the energy spotlight. This was compounded in Brazil, where the spotlight in the debate on energy in 2009 were directed to oil-layer pre-salt. Thus, biofuels space lost in the discussion.

The research of Barros and Schutte points out that should not be left in the background discussion of the "equally promising future of ethanol." For them, in a scenario where concern for the environment is irreversible, it is mandatory that Brazil can articulate harmoniously the various sources of energy. The study shows that Brazil has much to gain from the development of the ethanol market, since the yield obtained with the cane sugar is much higher than the extractions derived from corn in the United States, and beet, in European countries.

In addition, there is the fact that Brazil dominate all phases of the production chain, from planting to marketing and use of better production technologies.

The only thing that weighs against Brazil is the fear of consuming countries in relation to dependence on a few exporters of ethanol, as happens today. Markets in which Brazil has the field almost total, distantly followed by the United States, India, China and South Africa

The researchers from IPEA said that the realization of a world market of ethanol involves the processing of the product into a commodity (with price international, defined by the Chicago Stock Exchange).

For researchers, coordinated action is needed to encourage the production of sugarcane in third countries, the private sector and technical cooperation, public sector, to improve agricultural production - particularly of the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa ), which already performs some actions that end in African countries.
Source: Stênio Ribeiro, repórter Agência Brasil.
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

U.S. producers launch campaign against Brazilian ethanol April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

The producers of U.S. ethanol, using corn as raw material, has launched a new offensive to try to block the entry of Brazilian ethanol from sugar cane. Last week, two members of the caucus in Washington, submitted a bill to try to extend for a further five years the subsidies to corn farmers and tariffs on ethanol imports.

The Industry Association of Sugar Cane in Brazil (Unica) believes that this is the main battle of the year for Brazilian ethanol producers.

Recently, Brazilian sugar mills obtained a great victory in the U.S., with the recognition by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), that ethanol produced from sugar cane is an advanced biofuel, which reduces by at least 40% dioxide emission carbon compared to gasoline. The EPA's decision opens the door for the U.S. market - provided that the lobbying of the producers of corn ethanol can not maintain or raise the barriers existing today.

Subsidies. The current legislation provides for two types of benefits to U.S. producers. One is the benefit: for every gallon of gasoline with ethanol, U.S. producers of ethanol earn a credit of $ 0.45 to be shot in taxes. Another benefit is the import tariff, which imposes rate of $ 0 54 per gallon on Brazilian ethanol. This law is in force until the end of the year.

The bipartisan action announced last week by Mr Obama and Republican John Earl Pomeroy Shimikus aims to defend this protection to American corn producers. A bill similar and coordinated with the Board must be filed in the Senate in coming weeks.
According to the two MPs, if the current law expires, 112 thousand jobs could be lost and the production of ethanol will be reduced by 38%. "At a time when the U.S. economy faces problems, we can not allow these tax incentives expire, undermining the growth we have seen in our ethanol industry," said Pomeroy. "The extension of tax credits help the industry to contribute to the security of our nation," said Shimkus.

The proposal was immediately opposed by producers in Brazil and the U.S. food industry, which ends up paying more for corn that is not intended to ethanol.


Joel Velasco, UNICA's representative in Washington, issued a statement saying that "Americans will not benefit from this alternative cleaner and more economical if Congress continue erecting trade barriers against imported ethanol." "It is ironic that Congress allow oil from nations hostile to the U.S. entering the country without paying fare, while penalizing the clean energy of Brazil, a longtime democratic ally."

The American Meat Institute, representing U.S. producers of meat, also spoke. "Unfortunately, this law continues to support and protect dishonestly corn ethanol in the last 30 years at the expense of American taxpayers and cattle and birds that depend on corn for feed," he said in a statement, the president of the association, Patrick Boyle. "It is time for the ethanol industry to stop using American tax money and go on to compete on their own in the free market."

Unica in the U.S. Congress has acted to defend the position of Brazilian producers. The main argument is that tax incentives are $ 6 billion to U.S. coffers each year.

The task will be difficult, since this is an election year and corn producers influence the votes for members in many states. President Barack Obama also knows that his turn in the presidential race came thanks to his victory in the primaries in Iowa, a major corn-producing states.

The corn growers to use the EPA report for their lobby. As the EPA estimated that sugarcane ethanol is less polluting than corn, American manufacturers say this is another reason for the government to defend them.

Source: Gustavo Chacra - O Estado de S. Paulo, New York Correspondent
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

Global crisis and low prices have reduced investments in the sugar cane April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

Sao Paulo - A lack of investment in recent years in the renovation of sugarcane may affect the next crop sector. According to the technical director of Industry Union of Cane Sugar (Unica), Antonio de Padua Rodrigues, the international crisis and low in alcohol prices, the industry stopped investing in the recovery of crops.

According to data released this week by Unica, investments in sugarcane plantations in 2009 were 23% lower than 2008. Robinson notes that the aging of the planting becomes more unpredictable production. "Nobody is able to do planning in a sugarcane crop unbalanced," he said.

Roberts believes that the sector companies will have to invest in its plantations in the next offseason, which will reduce the area available for harvest. "You finish this season with a cane field totally unbalanced and companies want to standardize their sugarcane. Increasing the area of reform next year, you will have less area available for harvest, "he explained.

The new areas of plantation cane sugar will succeed, according to Rodrigues, hardly compensate for the areas that need to be reformed. "Obviously we will continue having expansions, but the likely scenario is that it compensates for the reduction of area to be harvested next season," he said.

The harvest this year, 2010/11, should surpass by 10%, totaling 595 million tonnes of cane crushed, according to estimates from Unica. Ethanol production should reach 27.3 billion liters, 15% than last season. In sugar, production must increase by 19.1% and reach 34 million tonnes.

According to Unica, the results should show the normalization of the season, after an atypical year. Excessive rains in 2009 damaged, according to the entity, the last season and was responsible for the great rise in prices recorded since the end of the year. Furthermore, the producers had sold part of the product below the cost price at the beginning of the year to compensate for a lack of liquidity.

The president of UNICA, Marcos Jank, said that, however, the exceptional conditions established last year is unlikely to repeat. He added that the industry works closely with the federal government to strengthen a program storage of ethanol to give more stability to oil prices.
Source: Daniel Mello, repórter Agência Brasil. Edição: Enio Vieira
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

Production of sugarcane is expected to grow in Mato Grosso April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

Mato Grosso will grow 215 thousand hectares of cane sugar in the 2010/2011 season. Of this total 93.4%, equivalent to 200.9 thousand (ha), submit to the cane sugar industry to be transformed into sugar and ethanol. The remainder (14,095 / ha) will be used for seedling production, rum and other derivatives of the product. The numbers are preliminary and were cleared by the Union of Sugarcane Industries of Mato Grosso (Sindalcool-MT), based on the intention to produce 10 plants in operation in the state. The cut cane is carried out between April and November.

According to the entity will be processed 14.1 million tons of cane sugar this season, a slight increase of 0.39% on volume ground last year, which accounted for 14.045 million (t). The amount is still 7.7% lower compared to the volume processed by the state units in the harvest 08/09, when 15.283 million were milled (t), the highest number of the last 5 seasons. In assessing the union's executive director, Jorge dos Santos, the concern of the industry is not concentrated in the 10/11 season but in 11/12.

He said the industry are low wages and no capital by selling the product any intention of limiting investments in the fields. The cut of the same cane plantation can be done within 5 years following the planting and many plantations that term is ending this year. "If no new planting, fertilizing and processing of sugar cane will not have enough production from next year to meet the market," said Santos, explaining that even the recovery of the ethanol price in recent months was enough to profitability sector increased.

According to data from Sindalcool, total production of ethanol in the 10/11 season is 818.958 million liters, 0.84% less than recorded in the previous season, which reached 825.914 million / l. The reduction is driven by the production of anhydrous alcohol, which is expected to total 254.2 million / l, compared to 271.9 million tonne last year, a decrease of 6.5%. Already the hydrated increased from 554 million / l to 564.7 million / l increase of 1.9%.

Source: A Gazeta
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

Brazilian family agriculture sustains 30 million people April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

Brasilia - The family farm is responsible for supporting the 30 million Brazilians who live in rural occupations. However, there are among them, a low level of education and the average wage is less than the minimum wage. Much (75%) of the number of unpaid workers are women. The finding is the Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA), which is based on the National Survey by Household Sampling (PNAD), released on 1st April, chapter on the rural sector. The publication is a description of the state's rural country, to be used for the formatting of public policy in Brazil. According to the survey, 43% of rural population is not remunerated. "The rural population is estimated at 30 million. This corresponds to just over 16% of the population. It is larger than the population of many countries in the world, but for a historic failure of the state, ends up without any kind of employment contract, rights and social guarantees or access to goods and services, "explains the coordinator of area Rural Development IPEA, Brancolina Ferreira. The low quality of education affect significantly the quality of life of rural population and the performance of family farming as a whole, "both in terms of production, access and use of new technologies, such as not giving knowledge about how they claim they need, "says the researcher. Women, according to the researcher, are a large number (75%) of the unpaid workers belonging to the economically active population. "There are over 4 million women and just over 2 million men in this situation," said Brancolina. She said the high concentration of land in Brazil is one of the causes of the problems experienced by the rural population. "The data make clear that the land remains concentrated in the hands of a few, and that the forms of access to it are still provisional and precarious," she said.
Source: Peter Peduzzi, repórter Agência Brasil. Edição: Rivadavia Severo
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

Agriculture must adhere to the proposed Agricultural Development in the new Forest Code

April 6, 2010

Brasilia - The former Minister of Agriculture, Reinhold Stephanes, said that his portfolio will adhere to the proposal of the Ministry of Agrarian Reform on the changes in the Brazilian Forest Code. For Stephanes, the proposal is the most conciliatory between what they want the ministries of Environment, Agriculture and Agrarian Development.

"The proposal is that in streams of up to 6 meters wide, the margin has 10 meters of forestry. 6 to 8 meters, the margin would be 15 meters and a river over 8 meters, 30 meters from shore would. "

Stephanes Second, if the current law is applied that requires 30 meters of riparian forest regardless of the width of the creek, could experience a "land reform in reverse" because it would remove the small properties on the banks of rivers, forcing its sale to larger farmers. Stephanes said in a short meeting he held with President Luiz Inacio da Silva before leaving office, said he would treat the matter with the Civil House, which holds the information and proposals about the only point on which there is divergence between agriculture and environment What is the footage of riparian forest on the banks of rivers. In the other four items, there would be agreement among the ministries.

The theme should have been treated by the President and Stephanes yesterday but the meeting was canceled.

The minister said the changes in the Forestry Code, which probably will come through a provisional measure, need to be made soon, or risk of occurrence of state initiatives, such as in Santa Catarina, which established an environmental law itself. "Rio Grande do Sul and Mato Grosso do Sul are with their own codes for their approval."
Source: Danilo Macedo, repórter Agência Brasil. Edição: Rivadavia Severo
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

In three years 270 thousand hectares of natural vegetation in the Pantanal have turned coal April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

The area is equivalent to twice the city of Sao Paulo
Estimate was made by IBAMA, he National Environmental Institute.
For environmentalist, charcoal production in the region serves to fund the opening of more pastures
The production of charcoal for the steel industry did away with the last three years about 270 thousand hectares of native forests in the Pantanal of Mato Grosso do Sul, which equals two times the territory of Sao Paulo.

The estimate was made by IBAMA in the State and took into account the demand from local industries in the period and the information about cargo movement contained in the guides of DOF (Source Document Forest).

"The advancement of charcoal on native forests, legally or not, is a serious threat to the survival of the Pantanal," says the superintendent of IBAMA-MS, David Lawrence.

Between 2007 and 2009, according to IBAMA, Mato Grosso do Sul moved 8.6 million cubic meters of charcoal-the bill includes the coal imported from Paraguay. The peak year was 2007, with 4.5 million cubic meters.

In 2009, IBAMA says, there was a significant fall in production: 1.2 million cubic meters. The institute assigns the result to the international crisis and the increase in the audit.

In the period, says Lawrence, the production from planted forests accounted for "practically nothing" about the industry demand. "The production is 99% through firewood from native forests. We have no doubt about it."

Every 80 cubic meters of wood native produce on average 40 cubic meters of coal. Most of this wood comes from the plateau region of Pantanal, says the superintendent.

"Before production was concentrated in the western state. But the gradual breaking down of Cerrado there led to a migration to the upland marsh, where we have 47% of native forests preserved."

For Luiz Benatti, head of environmental protection of IBAMA in the State, industries bunker and steel are now two major "inducing deforestation" of the Cerrado.
"The charcoal producers work directly. And the steel industry only want to put more coal into their plants, regardless of the origin and the conditions under which it was produced", he says.

The environmentalist Alcides Faria, executive director of the NGO South Mato Grosso ECOA (Ecology and Action), says that even
lowland areas are already targeted by the charcoal industry. "Among the possible impacts are erosion and silting of the rivers," said Faria.
To pasture

According to him, the conversion of native forests into charcoal is now a profitable option for the expansion of areas for livestock. "Many farmers use the cream native of their properties to finance, through the production of coal, the opening of new pastures," he says.

The process follows the same path, says the environmentalist, in the Pantanal region from Bolivia and Paraguay, which today are also major producers of native coal. "There is a marked expansion of these activities throughout the biome."

The president of the union of the metallurgical sector in the State, Irineu Milanesi says it considers "excessive" the estimate made by IBAMA. According to him, planted forests "are a reality." "We could not sustain the industry only with charcoal of native origin. This is an exaggeration of IBAMA," said Milanesi.

For Marcos Brito, the union representing the coal industry, the idea that native forests are cleared for charcoal production is
a "mistake." "What exists is the use of the material resulting from legally deforested for agriculture."

He said the industry is what generates more jobs in the state and will be self-sustaining in "seven to eight years." "We already have 307 thousand hectares and should reach 500 thousand hectares. This process is now well advanced," says Brito.
Source: Rodrigo Vargas, Agência Folha in Cuiabá
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin

New agriculture minister defends increase in production with environmental conservation April 6, 2010

April 6, 2010

Brasilia - The new agriculture minister, Wagner Rossi, said that reconciling the increased agricultural production and the need for environmental conservation will continue to be the greatest challenge of his ministry. During the ceremony of transfer of office, he criticized those planning environmental policies without knowing the reality of the field.

"Who knows better how to preserve the farmer is, why are you with the vegetation, with the springs. There are those who, in the distance, albeit with good intentions, they think the world out of their heads. We have to do it with respect, "he said.

Rossi said he will continue the actions taken over by the Minister Reinhold Stephanes and highlighted the struggle of his predecessor for what was considered the biggest concern of the industry: fertilizers, whose project to regulate the operation was handed over to President Luiz Inacio da Silva.

"Despite being one of the most productive, there is a foot that is not working in Brazilian agriculture. We have high dependence on imported fertilizers. We need the support of Petrobras and private companies like Vale, to attain self-sufficiency. Minister Stephanes work very hard to do so and we will continue, "he said.

In supporting the marketing of grain, the new minister said he had a good experience in this field, won over the little over two years when he was president of the National Supply Company (Conab). He said it was unanimity among the experts from the Ministry of Agriculture that some details proposed by the Ministry of Finance in the inter-ministerial "plaster" the whole mechanism of support to producers.

Rossi's replacement as president of Conab not yet been chosen. According to the newly sworn in Minister of Agriculture, President of the Republic instructed him and the Minister of Institutional Relations, Alexandre Padilha, task. "We will, if possible, an internal solution."

Source: Danilo Macedo, repórter Agência Brasil. Edição: Joao Carlos Rodrigues
Google translation, copy-desk: Maurício Galinkin