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Argentine soya harvest may advance on dry weather
BUENOS AIRES ,Favourable weather in Argentina, the world's No 3 soya producer, should allow farmers to make progress harvesting what is expected to be a record 2002/03 soya crop, a government weather specialist said on Wednesday.
Rains last week in Buenos Aires, Cordoba and Santa Fe provinces delayed the harvest for several days, with soil conditions that prevented combine harvesters from entering the fields.
"After today (Wednesday) we predict seven days of really good harvest weather, cold but sunny days," said Stella Carballo, a weather specialist at the state-run National Institute of Climate and Water.
Soya is Argentina's biggest crop and a key export. The government has forecast record soya output of 34 million to 35 million tonnes in 2002/03, up from 30 million tonnes last year.
Carballo said showers forecast for some key soya regions on Wednesday should not significantly delay the harvest.
"We've had much better weather than last year," she said.
"The only place where there are problems is in the north central region of Santa Fe, where it rained heavily in March and April."
Argentine producers began the soya harvest at the end of February and have collected 26 percent of the 12.6 million hectares sown with the oilseed, according official data last updated on April 4.
Carballo said yields from the 2002/03 soya and corn harvests are "exceptional" as a result of regular rains throughout the growing stages.
"In some areas, there are soya yields above 5,000 kilograms (5 tonnes) per hectare," she said.
MGR Archive 10.4.2003
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Russia Rapan $ 700
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USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
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