I read with considerable interest the recent article about substantial bean production in Luis Eduardo Magelhaes, Brazil (“Trade war delivers boom in Brazil, gloom in Iowa,” Oct. 14).
I spent more than 20 years working in Bahia. It is about twice the size of Texas. Magelhaes is in the western part and about two hard days drive from the coast. Bahia is in the tropics and is an agricultural state producing mostly sugar and cocoa. The Magallanes is a prominent family extensive in agricultural business.
If generalization is appropriate it can be said they are smart, work hard, play hard, do everything in a big way and are open to better ways of doing things. While working in Bahia I heard a lot of harebrained ideas but I had never heard of anyone suggesting growing soybeans. It just not a place where a rational farmer would try to raise beans. If Magelhaes has figured out how to do it the outlook for Iowa beans are not good.
I would suggest the Soybean Association send some real farmers to have a look see. Maybe we should forget about soybeans and try sugar beets instead.