Shifting trade flows are redefining the Brazilian landscape, spurring more farmers to align their crops with Chinese appetites.
Reuters reports the nation’s soy plantings have expanded by 2 million hectares in two years - an area the size of New Jersey - while land used for cane shrank by nearly 400,000 hectares, according to government data.
China’s growing demand for meat has supercharged soy imports for animal feed. The Asian nation paid $20.3 billion last year for 53.8 million tonnes of soybeans from Brazil, nearly half its output — and up from 22.8 million tonnes in 2012.
A new 25% Chinese tariff on U.S. soybeans is expected to boost Brazil’s soy exports to an all-time record this year.
Brazil’s grains boom has it rivaling United States as the world’s top soy producer this year, after outpacing U.S. exports over the past five years.