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Brazil’s Sugar Cane Areas Will Get Rain, Somar Says

Sugar cane-growing areas in Brazil, the world’s largest producer, will get rains this week, preventing the start of the new crop’s harvest, according to weather forecaster Somar Meteorologia.

Heavy rains will fall in the states of Parana and Sao Paulo from tomorrow to April 27, Marco Antonio dos Santos, an agronomist at the company in Sao Paulo, wrote in a report e-mailed yesterday. Rainfall may exceed 50 millimeters (2 inches) and will help soil moisture and plants, he said.

Wet weather over the weekend favored the development of recently planted sugar cane, according to the report. New crops were already smaller in size and inferior in quality because of dry weather earlier this year, dos Santos said.

The crop in Brazil’s center south, the country’s main producing region, is likely to be 510 million to 520 million tons in the 2012-13 season starting this month, dos Santos said. Sugar cane production in the region totaled 493.3 million tons in 2011-12, the first drop in a decade, after dry weather, frost and flowering reduced yields, according to industry group Unica.

The chance of frost in growing regions this year is “a lot smaller” than in the previous two, dos Santos said. That is because the Atlantic Ocean’s water temperatures near the region are higher than normal, which helps prevent frost, he said.

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