The province’s canola crop is estimated to be the largest on record at 8.9 million tonnes, an increase of 37.5 per cent over 2012. Average yields rose 50 per cent to 37.6 bushels per acre, Statistics Canada said Wednesday.
Production levels for wheat, canola, peas, lentils, chickpeas, oats and flax are all estimated to be above the 10-year average, the federal agency said. For example, wheat production in the province increased by nearly 44 per cent over 2012 levels.
“Saskatchewan producers deserve credit for the effort and dedication that went into this record-breaking crop,” Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart said in a press release Wednesday.
Stewart noted that producers exceeded the province’s goal to increase crop production to 36.6 million tonnes by 2020 as set out last fall in the Saskatchewan Plan for Growth. “We set an ambitious goal for crop production and our producers proved they were up to the challenge,” Stewart said.
Across Canada, farmers this year will harvest the most wheat ever and produce a record canola crop, according to the federal government survey.
Wheat production, including durum, will probably expand to 37.5 million tonnes, up from September’s forecast of 33 million tonnes, Statistics Canada said. Wheat production is forecast to rise 38 per cent from 27.2 million tonnes in 2012 and exceed the previous record harvest of 32.1 million tons in 1990.
The canola harvest in Canada, the world’s largest grower of the oilseed, may climb 29.5 per cent to 18 million tonnes, up from September’s forecast of 16 million tonnes and surpassing the record output of 14.6 million tonnes in 2011, according to the report.
Statistics Canada interviewed about 33,400 farmers from Oct. 26 to Nov. 13 to determine the production estimate.
But the federal government forecast may not fully show the size of the crop as farmers are conservative in their estimates, one analyst said. Harvests this year across the Prairie provinces may rise 14 per cent to 80.8 million tonnes, thanks to higher average yields, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada said Nov. 21. And there’s still concern that there won’t be enough rail capacity to move the record crop.
With files from Bloomberg News
© Copyright (c) The Regina Leader-Post