Canadian wheat exports rise, planting quickens
Canada’s wheat exports rose in early May despite dwindling global demand for old crop, while new crop seeding quickened from earlier in the spring following a return of favourable weather conditions.
Canada in the last reporting week ending 2 May exported 531,600t of wheat, up from 469,800t a week earlier and the highest since late January, statistics agency StatCan data show (see chart). This pushed total wheat exports since the start of the 2020-21 marketing year in August up to 15.08mn t, from 11.89mn t at the same time a year earlier.
And overall grain and oilseed exports so far this marketing year rose to 41.42mn t from 31.56mn t a year earlier. Wheat accounted for more than a third of all exports, followed by canola at 8.85mn t and soybeans at 3.59mn t.
Canada’s 2021-22 wheat seeding process saw quicker progress across major producing regions — Saskatchewan, Alberta and Manitoba — amid dry and warmer weather compared with the start of the spring. In Saskatchewan, 2021-22 seeding was 9pc complete in the seven days to 3 May, up from 7pc a year earlier and a five-year average of 6pc for the same period. Some 8pc of spring wheat was planted, compared with 11pc for barley and 5pc for canola.
In Alberta, seeding progress was 17.4pc complete, up from 9.4pc a year earlier and an average of 10.7pc in 2016-20. But below-average rainfall has weighed on soil moisture, with just 4.1pc of acreage rated as in excellent moisture conditions, down from 27.9pc a year earlier.
Manitoba’s 2021-21 seeding was 18pc complete in the reporting week ending 4 May, up from 9pc a year earlier but slightly below the four-year average of 21pc. Seeding is expected to progress at a much faster rate later in May, with long-term averages pointing to more than 90pc completion by the end of the month.
Canadian wheat production in the 2021-22 marketing year is forecast to fall to 33.5mn t from an estimated 35.18mn t this year, according to the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service.
Dry conditions so far this year, contrasting with the 2020-21 planting season, are anticipated to weigh on yields — forecast at 3.41 t/hectare (ha) for 2021-22, down from 3.51 t/ha this year.
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