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Brazilian meat producers on alert for corn shortage

Staff writer |
The chief executive of the Brazilian Association of Animal Protein (ABPA), Francisco Turra, has said animal protein producers are concerned about a shortage of corn in Brazil.

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Turra said shipments to other countries remain high, reducing the supply capacity of the internal market.

Turra particularly highlighted the flow of grain to supply poultry and pork businesses in the U.S., despite good crops harvested and the large existing supply in silos in that country.

According to information from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Turra said the country is expected to import 1.27 million tons of corn, a volume 56 per cent higher than in the previous harvest. The countries of South America will be the major suppliers.

"The exchange rate scenario has made it attractive to import corn from Brazil and Argentina... but this is turning into a serious problem for our industry," said the president of ABPA.

Turra highlighted the efforts made by Agriculture Minister Katia Abreu to help poultry and pig producers by changing taxes on maize, but this proposal was not accepted by Brazil's tax agency IRS.

"Unfortunately, IRS lacked understanding of the proposal. We hope now that the application for exemption of the 8 per cent rate for imports of maize that the minister presented to Camex is approved," added Turra.

The Ministry of Agriculture has promoted other actions to seek to balance the market, such as stocks auctions.

"Unfortunately, the price of corn remains high. We have members reporting cases of intermediaries delivering corn in port for R$32.00 per bag to meet previously signed contracts for future sales, while for Brazilian agribusinesses the price hits R$50.00.

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