U.S. farmers on the Commstock Investments Brazil Farmland Tour are getting a firsthand look at Brazil’s agriculture.
Alan VanNahmen, President and founder Kopper Kutter LLC, and a Kansas farmer, explains what they have seen.
“Well, it’s been a great week. Wonderful opportunity to see many common aspects of farming and crop production blessed diversified areas of coffee production, sugarcane production, long with dairy and a lot of grain handling and green processing feed companies, as well as biomass energy and ethanol production.”
He says one challenge facing Brazil farmers is their roads.
“I’d heard they’d be tough and rugged. And of course we’ve also been here a while during the rainy season and a couple of days with rain showers, were able to get around for the most part pretty good, but it’s a challenge with our roads, vast distances to travel and challenges of woods and trees that are being cleared alongside the roads. We’re trying to build those roads while you still have a lot of trucks and semis running up and down those roads. It’s just a big talent form and they have a lot of commodity a lot of grain to haul they probably have a shortage of gravel and sand around the area so they don’t have real good base materials close by to put down there and construct new roads. So that’s a big challenge for them.”
VanNahmen explains how Brazil competes with the United States in the global market.
“We’ll just have to keep working on it. Keep improving our efficiencies. I’m from really southwest Kansas, and we’re doing a lot of sorghum there. I expected maybe to see a little more sorghum there than what we have. But I think okay, these guys are definitely growing soybeans. They’re growing soybeans, twice a year two crops at least, some places three. So, no wonder they have already in just the past few years exceeded production and soybeans. They look at corn a little bit as a second crop. Wheat, there is virtually no wheat around. So, being in western Kansas, they’re not tapping into our product there. Our sorghum, something that we’re raising more and more and looking at doing more, and from that point, I’m sitting here with little bit of comfort and kind of happy to be a poor Kansas wheat farmer and sorghum farmer.”
The tour concludes January 24.