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Weather changes may be too late to salvage Argentina growing season

No surprises in the weather for South America in the second full week of January 2023, week-ending January 14, as dryness continued for Argentina and southern Brazil. Farther north, beneficial precipitation fell, which has been the case most of this growing season. Crop estimates for Brazil remain healthy while estimates for Argentina continue to be reduced. However, there are signs that the weather pattern could start to change later in January and into February 2023, which would bring wetter conditions back to Argentina and southern Brazil.

In the short term, the hot and dry pattern in Argentina and southern Brazil is expected to continue. The third full week of January 2023, week-ending January 21, will be the 4th hottest and one of the driest in 30+ years for the major growing regions of Argentina, according to data from WeatherTrends360

Hot and dry conditions are no stranger to Argentina as they are in the throes of one of the worst droughts in 60 years. Meanwhile, precipitation will continue to be at or slightly above normal farther north, and the stage is being set for a favorable second corn crop (safrinha) planting in Brazil. 

For the third season in a row, La Niña conditions are present, which favors drier than normal conditions in Argentina and southern Brazil. As forecasts grow in confidence that the end of this extended La Niña event is near, confidence also grows for an improving weather pattern in the drought-stricken areas. However, the change in weather pattern may be too late to salvage crops this season. 

Argentina and southern Brazil could see a change to a wetter weather pattern later in January and into February as La Niña conditions wane. This shift in the weather pattern may bring drier weather to central Brazil. However, healthy soil moistures combined with timely planting of soybean crops bodes well for the safrinha corn crop despite any emerging drier trends. Expectations are that the crop will go in the ground during the ideal planting window, which is a good signal for yields as the crop will mature before the dry season begins. 

Weather map week of January 16



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