Canada to Plant More Canola, Wheat


WINNIPEG, Manitoba (Reuters) — Canada’s farmers intend to plant more canola, all-wheat and oats than the trade expected, according to Statistics Canada’s first report on 2011 crop plans, but wet farms have left seeding plans in doubt.

Farmers have been idled so far this spring as cool weather slowed melting of deep snowpack on already saturated ground. Planting is 10 days to three weeks behind the norm, according to the Canadian Wheat Board, a trend that could lead to farmers changing their plans.

“The weather is going to dominate still,” said Ken Ball, a commodities futures and options broker at Union Securities in Winnipeg. “These numbers are all going to be questionable because there are going to be shifts and for all we know, all the acres might not make it in this year.”

(Graphic on canola, wheat, oats:…)

Farmers intend to plant a record 19.2 million acres of canola in the 2011/12 marketing year, up 14.3 percent from last year, Statscan said, and slightly higher than a trade range of estimates in a prior Reuters survey.

Most of canola’s gains will come in Saskatchewan, Statscan said, although that province is also seeing major spring flooding.

Canada is the top shipper of spring wheat, durum, canola and oats.

ICE Canada’s new-crop November canola futures did not react strongly to the report, but slightly extended overnight losses by late-morning dealings.

Statscan estimated bigger plantings of all major crops except peas on expectations that farmers will get much more land planted than they did during last year’s rainy season.

The result is optimistic planting estimates, said Stuart McMillan, the Canadian Wheat Board’s crops and weather analyst.

“I think this report accurately reflects farmers’ intentions, it’s just that given the tremendous amount of soil moisture, snow over the winter, the cool temperatures, we will see greater spread between reality and intentions this year,” he said.

The large planting intentions demonstrate how eager farmers are to cash in on high prices, McMillan said.

Statscan said plantings of all-wheat will climb 17.4 percent to 24.7 million acres — at the upper end of traders’ range of estimates.

Spring wheat plantings are expected to rise about 9 percent to nearly 18 million acres, while durum wheat area sees a 60 percent jump to about 5 million acres after farmers grew a small crop last year due to weak prices.

Oat seedings are seen rising 39 percent to 4.1 million acres.

The forecast jump in oat acres was surprisingly large, even though the trade expected a rebound after farmers produced the smallest crop in 19 years in 2010.

Even so, assuming normal yields and unplanted acres, higher oat production this year would still fall below the five-year average, said analyst Randy Strychar of

Chicago December oats slipped slightly, while Minneapolis December spring wheat rose.

Barley plantings look to rise 13 percent to 7.8 million acres.

Statscan surveyed 12,600 farmers from March 24 to 31 and asked them to project plantings based on a normal year.

LINK: Statistics Canada report:


Source:  Reuters

Posted by Haylie Shipp


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x