Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) announced Wednesday it has raised its earnings per share guidance for its fiscal first quarter and reaffirmed its full-year guidance.

The St. Louis-based agricultural chemicals and biotechnology company now expects ongoing EPS guidance in the range of $0.15 to $0.20 for the quarter, up from the previous guidance of $0.10 to $0.15 and exceeding analysts' consensus of $0.13.

"Reflecting the company's strategic growth plan, the first quarter is driven primarily by the strength of the business in Brazil and Argentina, with some contribution from timing benefits in the U.S. and Australia," said the company in a statement.

Monsanto reaffirmed its full-year guidance, leaving it unchanged at $3.34 to $3.44 per share, lower than the $3.46 expected by analysts. It has also projected free cash flow in the range of $1.3 billion to $1.5 billion for the full year.

The company will announce its first quarter earnings on Thursday, Jan. 5, 2012.

Monsanto was down 2.12 percent to $70.78 in late morning trading.