STAT Communications Ag Market News

Coarse Grain Stocks Up, Others Down

OTTAWA - Sep 4/20 - SNS -- Canada's ending inventories of barley and oats were up from the same date a year earlier, while stocks of wheat, canola, dry peas and lentils were down from last year, according to Statistics Canada's July 31 stocks in all positions report.

The results of Statistics Canada's triannual supply and disposition exercise, which incorporates survey data and administrative data to produce estimates of stocks of principal field crops, indicate that stocks of crops such as dry peas and lentils fell largely because of higher exports.

Rail disruptions slowed the movement of grain across Canada early in the year, potentially delaying exports. However, reduced demand for petroleum and consumer goods as a result of the pandemic freed capacity to move more grain, and record amounts were shipped in the late spring and summer.


Total stocks of wheat declined 14.6% year over year to 5.0 million metric tons (MT) as of July 31. This decrease was attributable to a drop in on-farm stocks of 35.0% to 1.7 million MT. Over the same period, commercial stocks increased 2.1% to 3.3 million MT. The decline in total stocks was largely driven by a 63.2% year-over-year decrease in durum wheat stocks to 659,800 MT. This can be explained by higher exports (+18.3%), the result of high global demand and lower world production in 2019.

Deliveries of wheat rose 3.9% year over year to a record-high 29.7 million MT as of July 31, contributing to the decrease in on-farm stocks. Exports increased 1.3% to 24.6 million MT, driven by strong global demand. Use of wheat for animal feed rose,0.6% to 4.4 million MT.


Total stocks of canola declined by over one-third (-34.3%) year over year to 2.7 million MT as of July 31. This decrease was the result of lower on-farm stocks, which fell 51.3% to 1.4 million MT, while commercial stocks rose 7.6% to 1.3 million MT.

On-farm stocks declined as off-farm deliveries rose 10.8% to 20.7 million MT. Deliveries were partially driven by high domestic demand as Canada's canola crushing hit a record-high 10.1 million MT in 2020. This record canola crush was the result of high global demand for vegetable oils, combined with high canola supply and good crushing margins.

Despite ongoing tariffs on canola exports to China, one of Canada's largest export markets, total exports rose 10.5% year over year to 10.2 million MT. Exports increased to a number of countries, including several in the European Union, as well as the United Arab Emirates.

Barley and Oats

Barley stocks rose 10.9% year over year to 956,500 MT as of July 31. This increase was attributable to higher on-farm stocks (+8.2% to 688,000 MT) and commercial stocks (+18.5% to 268,500). The growth in barley stocks was also largely attributable to increased production last year. Feed barley use rose 29.2% year over year to 6.9 million MT as of July 31, the highest level since 2010. Exports remained relatively flat at 3.0 million MT.

Total stocks of oats were up 7.3% year over year to 425,600 MT as of July 31. This increase was the result of higher commercial stocks, which more than doubled (+109.9%) to 218 100 MT, while on-farm stocks decreased 29.0% to 207,500 MT.

Domestically, oats used for food (+13.2%) and animal feed (+16.2%) increased year over year as of July 31. In addition, exports of oats rose 7.6% to 2.7 million MT. Despite these increases, total stocks were still higher as of July 31 than the same date a year earlier, because of high total supply following increased production in 2019.

Dry peas and Lentils

Total stocks of dry peas declined 25.0% year over year to 234,100 MT as of July 31. Both on-farm stocks (-26.7% to 96,000 MT) and commercial stocks (-24.3% to 137 200 MT) were down. Despite higher year-over-year opening supplies and lower domestic use, total stocks fell as a result of higher exports. Exports rose 17.2% to 3.8 million MT. This increase in exports was led by higher demand from China, which imported approximately 75% more dry peas year over year.

Stocks of lentils totalled 61,000 MT as of July 31, down 91.5% from the same date a year earlier. Higher exports (+33.3%) drove the decrease in total stocks. Exports to three of Canada's largest markets -- India, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates -- all rose year over year

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