Canada’s canola, pulse acres rise at grains’ expense

CNS Canada — Canadian farmers adjusted their acreage ideas to seed more canola and pulses at the expense of grains, according to the updated Statistics Canada field crop area report released June 29.

The adjustments were largely in line with trade guesses — and attention in the markets is quickly turning back to weather conditions.

“The report confirmed expectations, so now it’s on to the crop and how it’s progressing,” said Bruce Burnett of G3 Canada.

The general trend of rising canola and pulse acres, and declines in wheat, barley, and oats were anticipated by the industry, he said.

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StatsCan pegged canola area at 20.02 million acres, up by nearly 700,000 from the previous estimate and in line with the year-ago level. Lentils also saw a sizeable increase, rising to a record 5.84 million acres, also up by 700,000 from the earlier forecast and well above the 3.95 million seeded in 2015-16.

“I don’t think anything came out of the range of trade expectations,” said Mike Jubinville of ProFarmer Canada, adding that the immediate reaction in the futures was muted.

Weather and yield prospects will be more important moving forward, he agreed, noting “yield tends to ultimately be a more important influencer of what production is.”

Total wheat area was pegged at 23.177 million acres, which was down from an earlier estimate of 23.846 million and the 24.111 million acres seeded the previous year. Of that total, durum acres were steady at 6.1 million acres.

Barley and oats acres were pegged at 6.385 million and 2.861 million acres respectively, which were down from both earlier estimates and year-ago levels.

In addition to the declines in grain acreage, summerfallow was also revised lower. StatsCan now foresees the total cropland left unseeded this year at a record-low 1.985 million acres, which compares with the earlier forecast of 2.16 million.

— Phil Franz-Warkentin writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting. Follow him at @PhilFW on Twitter.

Table: A recap of Statistics Canada’s acreage report for the period ended June 12, 2016. Pre-report expectations are provided for comparison purposes. Figures are in millions of acres.

Pre-reportStatsCanStatsCanStatsCan
estimates
June 2016 March 20162015-16
Canola19.300 – 21.00020.02019.34520.095
Total wheat*22.800 – 23.80023.17723.84624.111
— Durum5.900 – 6.3006.1006.1205.820
Barley6.500 – 6.9006.3856.7776.527
Flaxseed1.100 – 1.5000.9251.1151.640
Oats2.400 – 3.0002.8612.9723.337
Peas4.300 – 5.0004.2744.2803.680
Lentils5.200 – 6.0005.8405.1403.950

* – “Total wheat” includes spring wheat, durum wheat, winter wheat remaining after winterkill.
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