Chickpea markets are becoming the first topic of conversation again as we get into harvest. Initial numbers out show expected yield for the 2020 production will be, on average, 27 bu/acre but concern of the size of the chickpeas has come to light. Timely weather events are believed to have affected the sizing and it is predicted there will be a smaller scale of caliber in the production. End of season frost also occurred which will likely yield some damaged production. Globally, Indian prices are the highest since 2018 which indicates they have been eating through their stocks. This does not translate to a huge jump in value, but it does support a bullish market. Prices have not moved from last week, but chatter has increased, and it is decidedly a bull market with today’s levels being a potential bottom.
The most recent StatsCan report was released showing that the large pea crop that was expected to come off is closer to 4.3 mln tonnes versus the 5 mln tonnes originally thought. Yellow pea tonnage looks to be just under last years numbers with green pea tonnage at a 25% over. As such, we are starting to see a little more firming up in the yellow pea price at $6.75/bu delivered in with green peas staying soft around that $8/bu delivered. The maple pea market continues to flatline as prices hover around that $8.25/bu delivered in with a small pocket in the south east where you may be able to pick up $8/bu FOB farm. With pea harvest winding down keep an eye out for seasonal pattern pricing to edge up. Typically, around this time to November then with a hiatus till the new year, more so on yellows right now versus greens and maples, as supply is available for those two but demand isn’t.
Flax prices are holding strong for another week with bids in the $14.00-$14.25/bu range picked up in the yard depending on movement time frame and quality. The estimated acres are larger than last year, but the little carry-over of good quality flax has kept the prices supported. Another factor surrounding pricing will be if the flax yields are affected by the late July heat and early September frost. China will be increasing their flax imports due to some damage from heavy rains so there will be some pull on Canadian supplies. Russia and Kazakhstan flax yields are still the biggest unknown. However, there seems to be limited selling pressure out of those areas which suggests lower availability. There are opportunities for quick movement on flax so once harvested, make sure to get samples into us
Mustard markets maintain values this past week despite StatsCan’s correction upwards of 2bu/acre on production to an average of 18.2 bu/ac. The reported fewer acres seeded this year is the concern and the factor that could drive buyer bids higher. In addition, buyer demand has not waivered and ending stocks maintained averages at 60,000 MTS. Harvest progress is ahead of the average at this point and quality is not a concern. Bids today for mustard average through to March as follows: Yellow @ $0.40/lb FOB farm, Brown @ $0.305/lb FOB farm, Oriental Forge @ $0.275/lb & Cutlass @ $0.255/lb FOB farm. While it is early days, this crop is believed to be a front runner in producers minds for increased acres next year; keep this in mind for your planning!
Wheat harvest is well on its way with a recent report suggesting 83% complete which compares to similar numbers on other cereals. Yield reports have been a quite a mix across the province though, as we hear numbers from 30 – 60 bushels per acre. All in all, bids and delivery on wheat (milling and feed) have seen slightly better quotes this week: feed values now sit around $4.75 to $5.35/bu FOB farm for Oct-Dec delivery, while milling bids hover at $6.25/bu delivered plant range depending on location and movement period. We have also seen some lower protein product (12.5%) trading at very attractive levels in central SK. Please call for details on this program.
Production estimates were released for September and lentils were up even more, with StatsCan showing an increase of 36% from last year. A big jump indeed, but so far these numbers have yet to affect pricing. This week #2 large green lentils are catching buyer’s attention and we’ve been trading at 30 cents picked up on farm quite consistently. There has been a bit of questioning on where this strength is coming from and it seems that some buyers are filling a short. Therefore, once filled, we may see some prices soften a bit again. Red lentils have been holding their price at 25 cents picked up and possibly a bit higher if movement is pushed out. As per reports, India’s demand has softened, however, sales are still filling into other destinations which is supporting the market. Small green lentils haven’t sparked as much interest in comparison, but we do have bids at 24 – 25 cents being shown.
Barley markets showing some strength this week with price moving up around 10 cents per bushel. A few buyers still have September movement available, but for the most part Oct-Dec is quoted. A small premium is seen for Jan-Mar delivery windows. Buyers are suggesting that price increase maybe short lived as once sales are covered, price will slip again. These suggestions make sense when you look at the StatCan numbers released on the September 14, showing a gain of 200,000 tonnes over last year’s ending stock and 300,000 tonnes over 18/19 ending stocks. South east and North East Saskatchewan barley is trading @ $3.75-$4.00/bu, Southwest and West central $4.00-$4.30 and Northwest $3.75-$4.00bu.
Canary seed prices continue to be very strong this week. Prices are up as high as 30 cents FOB on October to November movement now. We are starting to get yield reports on canary into the office. Average seems like a good way to describe it at this point with most reports in the 20’s bushel per acre in a lot of cases. This year’s supply will likely remain tight and support prices at this point from the looks of it. Call your merchant on movement options as we may be able to ship earlier than October to November.
The oats market is pretty weak these days with milling bids around $2.60 to $2.75/bu picked up in many areas, but movement pushed into next summer. Feed bids are wide ranging from $2.25/bu to $2.75/bu range depending on area and quality, but the feed movement is significantly faster than milling and possibly would allow bins to free up, or bags to empty, within 3-4 weeks. Waiting on milling movement to next summer for little to no premium doesn’t make a ton of sense based on today’s values. Hopefully we see milling rates climb up a bit after we break free of harvest pressure and yield numbers get a little more accurate to how the crop actually ran and not just projections.
Soybean futures caught their breath yesterday after lower August crush numbers. Today is a new day and soybean futures have staged another leg-up fueled by continued Chinese demand and an announcement by the US EPA. EPA announced it will hold refiners to account on renewable inclusion rates. This has direct impact on corn consumption, but as it said “corn floats all boats” and the commodities board turned green today. Local bids are in the range of $10.75/bu picked up on farm. Dry bean harvest reports are in the early stages and average yields are being reported. We continue to get dry bean buying inquiries from a well-supported but not panic driven market. New crop faba bean bids are in the range of $7/bu picked up on farm for zero-tannin varieties. Tannin varieties may command a premium with early indication of $9/bu FOB farm for select tannin varieties.
Canola futures have jumped up sharply today after seeing small losses yesterday. Those losses came from speculators booking in profits and taking their risk off the table. End user demand appears to be driving prices up and this type of price strength at harvest might be a sign of strength to come for the rest of the crop year. November canola futures are sitting at $530.20/MT at time of writing while January futures are $536.90/MT. There is a bit of carry into March/May futures but a slight decline into July. As always, keep an eye on local basis levels and those deferred positions to find that little bit extra.
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