Pandemic, increase of pests and new releases of the product contributed to the growth of imports

TCP, the company that manages the Paranaguá Container Terminal, registered an increase of 95% in the movement of pesticides in the period between January and August 2022, compared with the same period in 2021. In all, more than 166 thousand tons of the product were imported. Challenges in foreign trade, government benefits and importers’ strategies influenced the growth.

Among the companies that most imported pesticides in TCP is CHD’S do Brasil, which in the first months of 2022 increased by 700% the purchase of this type of product compared to the same period in 2021. According to the partner director of CHD’S, Leila Zorzetto, “the main reason for the increase in imports was our growth in the market and the expansion of our portfolio with the approval of new registrations.
The increasing releases made by the federal government, authorizing the importation of new pesticides, contributed to the increase in the sector’s movement. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, in 2021 alone, 562 products of this type were authorized. Another reason for the surge in imports is the dry climate, which makes the environment conducive to the proliferation of pests and insects.

According to the executive director of the National Syndicate of Plant Protection Products Industry (Sindiveg), Eliane Kay, “Paraná is one of the greatest Brazilian agricultural powers. The state suffers from the impact of insects, fungi and weeds, which sensitively affect productivity.” The Union says that weeds and sucking insects – whiteflies, leafhoppers and bed bugs – directly affected Paraná’s soybean, corn and sugarcane crops in the first half of this year. Together, the three cultures generate more than R$ 46.6 billion in production value in the state, annually, according to data from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics.

Imports through Paranaguá

The main importers of pesticides from TCP moved, together, a total of 11,382 TEUs (standard unit of measurement for a 20-foot container) in 2022. The number is almost double that of 2021, which recorded a movement of 5,851 TEUs from January to August. According to Giovanni Guidolim, TCP’s commercial and service manager, the pandemic reduced the supply of raw materials in the market. “In 2022, foreseeing a new shortage of products, our customers intensified imports to anticipate the next harvests, resulting in a large stock of the merchandise,” explains Guidolim.

In the case of CHD’S, the stockpiling happened as a precautionary measure in relation to the increase in maritime freight and new lockdowns: “Since our products are seasonal, we anticipated some shipments,” comments Zorzetto.

According to Sindiveg data, the pesticide market in Paraná represented 10% of the total Brazilian application in the first half of 2022. The state applied more than US$ 630 million in inputs in the period, an amount 12% higher compared to the same period last year – something motivated both by the incidence of insects and weeds and by the increase in planted area and by anticipation of purchases and seasonality.

“Despite Paraná having increased by 12% the value purchased of the product, in TCP we verified a 95% growth in the volume moved. The reason for this is that we have companies from several states opting for Paranaguá for the exclusive infrastructure conditions for storing IMO cargo that we offer, besides the largest container yard and the best commercial conditions in Brazil. Our 10-day free storage allowance gives more flexibility to companies, and is in line with the trend of greater storage in this market,” comments Guidolim.

According to Sindiveg, the trend for the coming months is to intensify the import of raw materials. “Due to the worsening of sanitary challenges caused by pests and diseases, not only Paraná, but all Brazilian states, should maintain intense acquisition of products for the 2022/2023 harvest,” predicts Eliane Kay.

Mayara Locatelli