OTTAWA — Canadian farmers indicated they intend to plant 10% more canola and 27% more soybeans in 2017 than in 2016, which, if realized, would mean record-high acreage for both crops, Statistics Canada said in its April 21 Principal Field Crop Areas report for March 2017. Area planted to wheat for harvest in 2017 was little changed from a year ago, but durum area was expected to drop 17% while spring wheat area was seen rising 8%.
“Canadian farmers expect to plant more canola, soybeans and oats in 2017, but fewer acres of durum wheat and lentils, crops that were both at high levels in 2016,” Statistics Canada said. Intended plantings of most oilseeds were higher while grains and other crops were mixed.
Canola planted area for 2017 was forecast at a record 22,387,100 acres, up 10% from 20,367,100 acres last year. Area was forecast at 12.3 million acres in Saskatchewan, up 11%, at 6.8 million acres in Alberta, up 15%, both of which would be record high, and at 3.1 million acres in Manitoba, down 2%.
Farmers said they intend to plant a record 6,955,600 acres of soybeans, up 27% from 5,467,100 acres in 2016.
Both the canola and soybean planting intension forecasts were above trade expectations that averaged 21.3 million acres and 5.9 million acres, respectively.
Total area planted to wheat was forecast at 23,181,700 acres, down just 30,200 acres from 23,211,900 acres in 2016 and down 4% from 24,110,900 acres in 2015, Statistics Canada said. Spring wheat area was forecast at 16,664,200 acres, up 8% from 15,404,300 acres last year, durum area at 5,145,000 acres, down 17% from 6,190,000 acres in 2016, and winter wheat remaining after winterkill at 1,372,500 acres, down 15% from 2016.
“Alberta anticipates wheat acreage to be up 10% to 7.4 million acres, a possible record high, but less area is expected to be dedicated to durum, down 8.5% to 1.1 million acres,” Statistics Canada said. Wheat area in Saskatchewan was forecast to drop 3% to 11.8 million acres, including a 19% decrease in durum to 4.1 million acres. Manitoba farmers intend to plant 2.7 million acres of wheat, down 9% from 2016, the report said.
The Statistics Canada numbers were above trade expectations for all wheat and durum that averaged 22.5 million acres and 5 million acres, respectively.
Planting intentions for corn were 3,751,100 acres, up 13% from 2016, for oats were 3,419,000 acres, up 21%, for barley were 5,880,000 acres, down 8%, and for fall rye were 252,000 acres, down 23%. Flaxseed plantings were forecast at 1,115,000 acres, up 19% from 2016, and sunflowerseed at 50,000 acres, down 29%.
Dry edible bean area was expected to be 260,000 acres, down 6%, dry field pea area 3,989,000 acres, down 6%, chick pea area 140,000 acres, down 13%, lentil area 4,385,000 acres, down 25%, mustard seed area 390,000 acres, down 26%, and canary seed area 270,000 acres, up 4%.Intended summerfallow area was 1,765,000 acres, down 11% from 2016 and down 22% from 2015.