In 2004 there was too much rain in some regions and drought in others. The result was a drop of 4.56% in soy production, compared to 2003. Even so, Brazil remains the world’s second biggest soy producer, behind only China.
Soy now accounts for 30% of all farm production in Brazil, and occupies the largest amount of cropland (21.6 million hectares).
However, the most profitable crop in Brazil in 2004 was cotton. Cotton cropland was up 72.7%, mainly because of good prices on international markets.
The second most profitable crop in Brazil nowadays is sugarcane, mainly because of demand for sugarcane-based ethanol fuel for vehicles.
Cars that can run on both gas and ethanol, known as flex-fuel, have become very popular.