Canadian flax exports have more than doubled from last year and with an estimated increase in the StatsCan seeding intentions report next week, we hope to see that export strength continue. If you still have flax in the bins, prices vary depending on movement. New crop is still holding strong at $16-$16.75/bu picked up with an act of God. The Kazakh market is still hard to decipher, as the National Statistics Service reports 405,000 tonnes of flax inventories as of April 1. However, flax prices also remain at record highs despite these heavy stocks which is a tad surprising. A couple things could be happening; farmers aren’t selling, keeping prices supported and/or the quality is poor. European flax prices seem to have levelled off causing crush margins to drop significantly. Analysts are pretty confident the highs have passed for old crop flax, so now it’s time to weigh in on these new crop values.
The mustard market remains very strong on both new and old crop product. Current spot bids are showing yellow up to $0.45/lb picked up on farm for #1 quality, brown mustard up to $0.40/lb and oriental up to $0.35/lb for Forge and Vulcan type. Cutlass type still carries a couple cent discount. New crop bids are similar to spot prices to encourage growers to stick with mustard. This push is needed with so many other profitable cropping options this year. The biggest hurdle for many growers to consider forward contracting still seems to be moisture concerns. Recent snow events have helped some, but not made too big of a dent in the shortfall; we still need rain. As always mustard production contracts do come with an act of God, mitigating marketing risks in the future, while keeping your farm protected in the event of a total production loss.
The milling wheat market continues to see strength this week with bids based on #1 quality with 13.5 % protein sitting around $8.70/bu delivered plant for April-May. Growers with #1 product & 12.5% protein can expect bids in the $8.50/bu delivered range for the same timeframe. Short term need seems to be in play as further out bids for June/July drop considerably. New and old crop durum bids remain unchanged with production values at $8.25 to $8.50/bu FOB farm in the Southeast part of Saskatchewan. Spot values are indicated at $8.50/bu range delivered to plant throughout most of Saskatchewan. Feed wheat markets have seen a bit of an uptick again this week, making its way back to previous highs of $7.75/bu FOB farm in many areas of Sask. and over $8.00/bu FOB farm in Alberta. It looks like now is the time to sell any milling or feed wheat left in the bins!
Barley remains unchanged from the week previous with old crop still trading in the $6.00/bu FOB farm range, depending on the area. New crop values remain the same with availability to lock in $5.00/bu FOB farm in many locations. If you are still sitting on old crop or planting new crop, we stick with our previous suggestion: it just may be time to sell! Although the market does not seem to be dropping off at all, it also isn’t going up either. As growers hit the field and therefore harvest is right around the corner, a last-minute push on old crop seems unlikely. It stands to reason that values for old crop feed barley throughout the year were more than adequate to purchase enough stock to cover needs until new crop. Buyers are still willing to purchase, however, expect bids to stay similar with delivery windows getting pushed out. Recent snowfall will help barley crops get off to a better start, so put some of your new crop barley on the books at these very attractive values and leave the rest to the open market. At this point it’s no secret that current values are being driven by Chinese demand and although this makes the numbers look great, those markets can dry up overnight. Your goal may be to capture an additional 10-25 cents, but are you prepared for the potential $1-$2 drop? It’s all a risk vs reward situation and hedging against the potential downside is likely a good option.
Oat trading has been pretty quiet as of late. Buyers seem to have an abundance of coverage on the books, thus not having to chase any old crop or even post a bid, as is the case with many of our buyers. Old crop milling prices are hovering around that $3.70/bu range picked up on the farm in the right location, granted you can find a purchaser. Feed oats have also run into a similar marketing phase as this soft trend has producers sitting on product. Buyers are looking for good heavy feed oats which would garner bids around $3/bu. If you’re looking for a better price let your merchant know as an offer may be the best way to go.
There is very little change in the pea market as prices continue to hold their values over the past couple of weeks. Yellow peas are at $10.00/bu delivered, with new crop values at $8.50 – 9.00/bu picked up depending on location and movement period. Green peas remain quiet with $9.50/bu picked up being available in few locations. New crop pricing is holding at $9.00/bu. Maple peas also remain at $9.50 – 10.00/bu picked up on old and $9.50/bu picked up on new crop. Shipments have slowed down on peas, as yellows are hard to come by and buyers have softened their bids to wait for new crop. There is also still a good chunk of green peas on farm, however, buyer and grower price expectations have yet to align. We are expecting a drop in green pea acres so that brings hope that this market could move back to its premium position for new crop.
A nice shift in chickpea markets this week as StatsCan reports an improvement in export numbers at 15k MTS which is also the highest it’s been since April 2019. The Mexican harvest has been reporting 5-year average lows on production and with the rumors of Indian tariffs being lifted and questionable supply in India and Pakistan, chickpeas could be on the rise again. On the buy side, the demand is steady and starting to show improvement on bids. Old crop #2 Large Kabuli chickpeas are being bid at$0.34-$0.35/lb FOB farm for May-June with new crop bids as high as $0.355/lb delivered to central SK. plants. There is still strong demand for low quality product, but this becomes a needle in a haystack situation on the seller side – hard to find. All eyes are on chickpeas as they start to come to life again after a very long nap.
Canola futures continue to fly high, almost hitting limit up yesterday on the nearby months and seeing solid gains into the new crop months as well. May futures are at $871/MT currently, which is up from $834/MT last week. July futures are at $814/MT, which is also up big from last week when we saw $761/MT. There are many factors out there that have led to this rally in canola. Technical signals are looking bullish which has speculators adding to their positions, meanwhile soy has given support to the canola market as well. Add extremely tight stocks on the farm, dry weather, and slightly weakening Canadian dollar and you get a perfect storm for price increases. November futures have not shied away from the higher prices either and sit at $680/MT, up from $638/MT last week. With some attractive local basis options out there, signing up some new crop is very tempting to many growers.
Lentils have stabilized this week with prices remaining relatively unchanged. We are seeing a slight variance in the abundance of new crop red traded at $0.30/lb FOB farm with an AOG, but some targets are still triggering. This week, reports suggest the price of red lentils in India has jumped by $61 USDA/MT since the start of April, but due to import tariffs it’s still tough for companies to put a large number of sales on the book. This, along with rising COVID cases in India will influence pricing going forward. When COVID cases rose in Indian last spring, we experienced a strong response in Indian purchasing along with reduced tariffs, which may be the case again. We also patiently await the arrival of StatsCan’s projected seeded acreage report next week. The early prognosis is that lentil acres will be slightly lower than the last average, thus, making supplies for next year tight even if we produce an average crop. If acres are down more than previously thought it may cause a slight rally in new crop pricing. More on this subject next week once the report is released.
U.S. planting delays and dwindling old crop supplies continue to drive soybean prices higher and higher. China has signaled that they may be backing off the proportion of corn and soybean in livestock rations. The market seemed to breeze past that memorandum and continues to trade higher values. Local soybean bids continue to hover around $16.25 bu picked up depending on location. The faba bean market continues to have decent demand for higher quality grades. Good quality #2 Faba bids are in the range of $9.00/bu FOB farm location dependent. Dry bean market prices remain well supported coupled with healthy export numbers. New crop dry bean acres are forecast to decrease both North and South of the border.
Canaryseed has continued strong this week, and we are seeing an average spot price of about $0.33/lb FOB farm for July movement. That said, we have had a couple targets triggered for higher. New crop is sitting around the $0.30/lb mark for Sept. to December pickup with Act of God, again with a slight opportunity for stronger contracts on offer. Getting 10bu/acre on the books to take some risk off the table may not be a bad play, especially with an act of God clause. We have booked quite a few acres recently, so be sure to talk to your merchant. For those looking to move spot canaryseed sooner than later, we may have some options available for May around $0.32/lb. Acres are still projected to be up around 10, which doesn’t seem like a lot if that’s indeed accurate but may be enough to keep markets at bay. On the other hand, there is also some thinking that available farm stocks have and are tightening, which could perhaps cause more action in the near term. We will have to see how this plays out in the next few months prior to the new harvest. Last minute seed is still available so call your merchant if you’re in need of some.
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