STAT Communications Ag Market News

Canada Expects More Grains, Less Oilseeds

OTTAWA - Aug 31/20 - SNS -- Canada expects increases in output of wheat, corn for grain, barley and oats, but less canola and soybeans, according to recent yield models using satellite technology.

Statistics Canada explained that to "alleviate stress on farmers during the COVID-19 pandemic, (it) relied upon proven satellite technology to model preliminary crop yields and harvests for 2020. These methods have successfully been used to produce September yield estimates since 2016, and last year replaced the method used to produce the July yield estimates for Manitoba."

Farmers in parts of the Prairies had to contend with excessive rain and lower-than-average temperatures this summer, while it was hot and dry throughout most of Eastern Canada.

Data from the Crop Condition Assessment Program published by Statistics Canada indicate that overall plant health in the Prairie provinces was equal to or much better than normal for most of the region, indicating the possibility of higher-than-normal yields. Conversely, plant health in Eastern Canada was worse than average and has worsened considerably since early June, likely because of the lack of rain.

Smaller Soybean Harvest

Canadian soybean production is projected to decrease 1.4% year over year to 6.0 million metric tons (MT) in 2020, as a result of lower harvested area (-12.5% to 4.9 million acres). Yields are expected to increase 12.6% to 44.6 bushels per acre.

Farmers in Ontario are projected to produce 4.0% less soybeans in 2020, at 3.6 million MT. Harvested area is expected to fall 8.0% to 2.8 million acres, while yield is anticipated to rise 4.5% to 46.1 bushels per acre.

In Manitoba, soybean production is projected to increase 2.6% to 1.2 million MT in 2020. Harvested area is expected to decrease 19.7% to 1.1 million acres, likely as a result of Manitoba farmers reducing seeded area following several years of lower yields because of dry conditions. However, yields are projected to rise 27.7% year over year to 37.3 bushels per acre this year, reversing the trend.

In Quebec, soybean production is projected to increase 14.0% to 1.2 million MT as a result of sharply higher yields (+16.7% to 49.7 bushels per acre), which will more than offset the projected 2.4% decrease in harvested area.

Better Canola Yields, Smaller Crop

Canola yields projected to increase but production to decrease 0.4% to 19.4 million MT in 2020, with higher yields (+1.2% to 41.6 bushels per acre) offset by lower harvested area (-1.6% to 20.6 million acres).

Saskatchewan, the largest canola-producing province, is expected to produce 4.2% less canola in 2020, at 10.5 million MT. Yields are projected to decrease 0.2% to 41.1 bushels per acre, while harvested area is expected to fall 3.9%.

In Alberta, yield is expected to rise 8.9% to 43.9 bushels per acre and harvested area to decline 0.3% to 5.8 million acres, resulting in an 8.6% production increase.

Canola production in Manitoba is expected to decrease 1.9% to 3.0 million MT. The projected decline in yields (-6.0% to 39.5 bushels per acre) is expected to offset the increase in harvested area (+4.3% to 3.3 million acres).

Bigger Wheat Harvest

Wheat production expected to increase 10.5% year over year to 35.7 million MT in 2020, given higher anticipated yields (+8.0% to 53.8 bushels per acre) and higher harvested area (+2.3% to 24.4 million acres).

The projected increase in wheat area is largely attributable to the durum wheat and winter wheat area remaining after winterkill, which offset the decrease in spring wheat area.

Higher yields for all types of wheat nationally are also expected to contribute to the production increase.

Wheat yield in Saskatchewan is expected to increase 3.8% to 46.1 bushels per acre in 2020, while harvested area is projected to rise 0.4%. This is anticipated to result in a 4.3% production increase to 15.8 million MT.

Harvested area is expected to edge up 0.2% to 7.2 million acres in Alberta, while yields are anticipated to rise 13.8% to 59.5 bushels per acre. This is projected to bring total wheat production up 14.0% year over year to 11.7 million MT.

Wheat production in Manitoba is projected to rise 4.2% to 5.2 million MT in 2020, the result of higher harvested area (+0.7% to 3.1 million acres) and higher yields (+3.5% to 61.9 bushels per acre).

Wheat production in Ontario (the majority of which is winter wheat) is projected to rise by two-thirds (+66.7% to 2.5 million MT) year over year, as a result of higher harvested area (+53.1%) and yields (+8.9%). The expected rise in harvested area is attributable to less winterkill because of a mild winter in the province.

Improved Coarse Grain Yields

Barley production is expected to rise 1.6% year over year to 10.5 million MT in 2020, driven by higher harvested area (+0.3% to 6.8 million acres) and higher yields (+1.3% to 71.7 bushels per acre).

Oat production is projected to rise 6.1% to 4.5 million MT. Harvested area is expected to increase 6.3% to 3.1 million acres, and yields are expected to edge down 0.2% year over year to 94.8 bushels per acre in 2020.

Corn for grain production projected to increase as a result of higher yields

Nationally, corn for grain production is projected to rise 3.9% to 13.9 million MT in 2020, with an anticipated increase in yield (+7.5% to 158.2 bushels per acre) offsetting lower harvested area (-3.4% to 3.5 million acres).

In Ontario, the largest corn-for-grain-producing province, production is expected to increase 1.1% to 8.7 million MT, as a result of higher harvested area (+0.3% to 2.2 million acres) and yields (+0.8% to 159.6 bushels per acre).

Corn for grain production in Quebec is projected to rise 8.8% to 3.7 million MT. Yields in Quebec are expected to increase 15.3% to 163.1 bushels per acre, while harvested area is expected to fall 5.7% to 885,000 acres.

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