Canadian canola, durum, oats area up

by Ron Sterk
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OTTAWA, ONT. — Many in the trade discounted large increases in 2011 Canadian durum, canola and oats plantings, reflected in the June 23 Preliminary Estimates of Principal Field Crop Areas from Statistics Canada, because of millions of acres left unplanted due to wet conditions that persisted after the data was collected.

The Stats Canada report was based on surveys and data collected from May 25 to June 3, but extremely wet conditions in parts of the key Prairie provinces delayed planting well beyond that time frame. Trade sources indicated there may be six million to eight million acres unplanted out of total crop area near 56 million acres in western Canada. The Canadian Wheat Board earlier said 87% of the crop had been planted in the Prairie provinces by June 19, and little if any planting occurred after that date because of the June 20 deadline to file crop insurance claims.

“Seeding has not been completed in all regions, as reported by farmers,” Stats Canada said. “A major factor has been the continued inclement weather in the eastern Prairie region and areas of Ontario and Quebec. This has caused delays in seeding and created uncertainty for farmers about which crops to seed. As a result, estimates of seeded areas may change in the July survey.”

In its report, Stats Canada estimated 2011 durum plantings at 4,375,000 acres, up 39% from 3,150,000 acres in 2010 but down 13% from 5,050,000 acres indicated its April 26 planting intentions report.

Spring wheat seedings other than durum were estimated at 17,538,300 acres, up 6.5% from 16,475,400 acres in 2010 but down 2% from 17,983,500 acres indicated in April. Seedings of winter wheat in 2010 intended for harvest in 2011 were 1,654,600 acres, up 15% from 1,439,400 acres a year earlier but down 2% from 1,690,400 acres in April.

All wheat planted area was estimated at 23,568,000 acres, up 12% from 21,064,800 acres in 2010 but down 5% from 24,723,800 acres indicated in April.

Area planted to canola was forecast at a record 19,799,500 acres, up 18% from the previous record of 16,818,400 acres last year and up 3% from April intentions of 19,224,700 acres.

Oats seedings were forecast at 3,814,200 acres, up 31% from 2,912,800 acres last year but down 6% from 4,056,100 acres indicated in April.

Soybean planted area was forecast at 3,885,300 acres, up 6% from 3,664,900 acres last year and up 3% from 3,757,100 acres in April. Flaxseed area was expected to be 1,100,000 acres, up 19% from 925,000 acres planted in 2010 but down 9% from 1,210,000 acres in April.

Barley planted area was forecast at 7,139,100 acres, up 3% from 6,910,700 acres last year but down 9% from intentions of 7,833,300 acres. Corn area was expected to total 3,041,400 acres, up 1% from 3,000,300 acres last year but down 5% from 3,211,400 acres in April.

Area for fall planted rye was 225,000 acres, down 2% from 230,000 acres in 2010 and unchanged from April. Area for dry peas was estimated at 2,515,000 acres, down 27% from 3,450,000 acres last year and down 8% from 2,745,000 acres indicated in April.

Because of the weather-delayed planting, traders agreed the market will not really know Canadian planted area until the first Canadian crop production report set for August 24 (Stats Canada’s July survey).

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