This week's US Grains Council Chart of the Week illustrates the dramatic growth in importance of Brazil's winter corn crop (the second crop, traditionally called the little crop).
Historically Brazil's summer crop (first crop) was the major corn crop, planted during its spring (October and November) season-harvested in March and April. However, in recent years corn planting for the winter crop has expanded rapidly, while soybean planting during the spring season has taken area away from the planted corn.
In fact, since 2000 Brazil has double corn production, all with second crop corn.
The area harvested for the first crop corn declined from 10.5 million hectares (25.9 million acres) in 2000 to 6.9 million hectares (17 million acres) in 2012/13. During the same time period, the area harvested for the second crop corn increased from 2.4 million hectares (5.9 million acres) to 8.9 million hectares (22 million acres). First crop corn production has remained constant at approximately 35 million metric tons (1.4 billion bushels), while second crop corn production rose from 6.5 million tons (298.5 million bushels) to 44.2 million tons (2.0 billion bushels) during the 12 year period from 2000 to 2012.