Record Canadian canola

by Laura Lloyd
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OTTAWA — Statistics Canada on June 26 reported record prospective canola plantings for the sixth consecutive year as well as increased areas of other crops except oats.

Area seeded to field crops in 2012 returned to levels prior to 2011, when flooding in parts of Manitoba and Saskatchewan limited planting, Statistics Canada said. Seeding for 2012 was not completed at the time farmers were surveyed and estimates may change later in the growing year, the agency said. The report was based on surveys conducted from May 28 to June 7.

In its report, Statistics Canada estimated 2012 durum plantings at 4,710,000 acres, up 17% from 4,015,000 acres in 2011 and below trade expectations near 5,000,000 acres.

Spring wheat seedings other than durum were estimated at 17,035,000 acres, up 8% from 15,760,000 acres in 2011. Seedings of winter wheat intended for harvest in 2012 were 2,067,000 acres, up 22% from 1,689,000 acres a year earlier. All wheat planted area was estimated at 23,812,000 acres, up 11% from 21,464,000 acres in 2011 but below trade expectations near 24,100,000 acres.

Expectations for higher wheat prices may mean Canadian farmers will move away from current levels of feeding wheat to livestock, according to comments on a Minneapolis Grain Exchange conference call after the report.

Area planted to canola was forecast at a record 21,273,000 acres, up 13% from the previous record of 18,862,000 acres in 2011 and slightly above trade expectations of 21,200,000 acres.

Oats seedings were forecast at 3,074,000 acres, down 1% from 3,109,000 acres last year and below trade expectations of 3,300,000 acres.

Soybean planted area was forecast at 4,316,000 acres, up 13% from 3,830,000 acres in 2011. Flaxseed area was expected to be 1,070,000 acres, up 54% from 695,000 acres planted in 2011.

Barley planted area was forecast at 7,365,000 acres, up 14% from 6,472,000 acres last year. Corn area was expected to total 3,638,000 acres, up 21% from 3,009,000 acres in 2011.

Area for dry field peas was estimated at 3,495,000 acres, up 50% from 2,328,000 acres last year.
Summerfallow was estimated at 3,855,000 acres, down 69% from 2011.

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