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HomeEconomyCommodities Shuttle: Agribusiness exports reach $120 billion in 2021, driven by soybeans

Commodities Shuttle: Agribusiness exports reach $120 billion in 2021, driven by soybeans


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Agribusiness exports are heading to end the year at US$ 120 billion. It will be the third time that the sector will accumulate revenue in excess of US$ 100 billion. In 2020, it was US$ 101 billion.

The agricultural trade balance had a good evolution in the year, not so much because of the volume exported but because of the prices practiced in the external market. Demand remained firm for all the main products sold in the country.

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Agribusiness has achieved several records this year, but the main highlight is the soy complex, which comprises exports of grain, bran and soy oil. This year’s revenues reached $48 billion, well up from last year’s $35 billion.

This is a sector whose exported volume did not vary significantly, but the evolution of prices was accentuated. Even with the Brazilian off-season, exports were firm in the last months of this year, despite being a period of the end of the harvest in the United States.

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The same happens with meat, which will end the year with a record US$ 20 billion, despite the Chinese suspension for beef protein from September to the middle of this month. The pig herd of
Chinese did not have a replacement as expected by the country. As a result, China had to maintain protein imports to meet domestic demand above expectations.

The Chinese had been buying a record volume of Brazilian beef in the first months of the second half, when the two cases of atypical mad cow occurred, and negotiations between China and Brazil were suspended.

Chinese demand for pork, the main protein consumed in the Asian country, remained firm, which will enable Brazil to surpass 1.1 million tonnes exported this year. The Chinese were left with half that volume.

Total exports of chicken meat reach 4.5 million tons, with revenues of US$ 7.5 billion. China, despite having reduced purchases, should keep 15% of the volume exported by Brazil.
The third major group of exports is forest products, which total US$ 13.7 billion this year, well above the US$ 11.4 billion of the previous year. The external demand for wood, mainly
for the raw raw material, it was great.

The sugar-alcohol sector once again registered a good volume of revenue, totaling US$ 10.2 billion, but the evolution was small compared to 2020, when the international demand for sugar was very high.

This year, prices had a strong evolution. The coffee sector, also due to external demand and the
lower offer in several producing countries, registered high prices, allowing Brazil to reach the end of the year with revenues of US$ 6.3 billion.

Corn was one of the few products that performed well below initial forecasts.
Exports of a volume close to 40 million tons were expected, but due to the drought that affected the off-season, foreign sales are 20 million tons lower than expected.

The drought that affected the off-season made the country produce 20 million tons less of the cereal, forcing industries in the sector to import high volumes.


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