INDIA: STRONG MONSOON CONTINUES
In June 1998, the southwest monsoon arrived in southern India on schedule, but showers associated with the phenomena were patchy and disorganized until later in the month. Planting of rainfed grains, oilseeds, and cotton was underway in much of the east and south by month's end. During early July 1998, the monsoon remained very active, bringing widespread, locally heavy showers to much of the region. The additional soil moisture maintained generally favorable prospects for grains, oilseeds, and cotton, but some areas experienced planting delays and flooding. In contrast, warmer and drier conditions continued over India's southern interior and much of Pakistan. Dryness in southern India was unfavorable for newly sown cotton and oilseeds. During July 12-18, locally heavy rains spanned the northern half of the region as the monsoon continued its northward trek. The abundant rain across India's northern rice and cotton areas continued to increase moisture reserves for early crop development. Showers reached northern Pakistan, also boosting moisture reserves for rice and cotton. However, a few areas, notably central India's primary soybean region, were too wet for normal development following weeks of copious rains. Very heavy rain flooded rice fields of Bangladesh. Warm, dry weather dominated India's southern interior for much of the week, although late-week showers brought some relief to vegetative grains, oilseeds and cotton. During July 19-25, a break in the monsoon brought warmer, drier weather to much of central and northern India. Grains, oilseed, and cotton planting was likely widespread in response to the reduction in rainfall. Moderate to heavy rain continued in the primary rice areas from eastern Uttar Pradesh eastward, with some additional flooding in sections of Bangladesh. In southern India, light to moderate showers benefitted interior summer crop areas as heavy rain returned to sections of the southwest coast. From July 26 through August 1, moderate to heavy rain returned to important oilseed and cotton areas of central India. In the interior crop areas, the heaviest rain stretched from the groundnut areas of western Gujarat southeastward through Andhra Pradesh, greatly improving moisture reserves for vegetative to reproductive summer crops. However, dry pockets persisted in northern soybean areas, reducing moisture for normal development. In fact, dry, hot weather covered much of north-central India and Pakistan, increasing irrigation requirements for cotton and rice. During August 2-8, rainfall was above-normal for the second week across India's southern interior, benefitting grains, oilseeds, and cotton. Widespread, locally heavy rain also continued in the east, maintaining adequate to abundant moisture levels for rice. However, the additional rainfall prevented the recession of flood waters in Bangladesh and other areas that had been excessively wet. Elsewhere, drier weather dominated the northwest, except for sections of Pakistan just north of the main cotton and rice areas that experienced bouts of heavy rain. Drier weather in western India (Gujarat and western Madhya Pradesh) favored cotton and oilseed growth, notably groundnuts and soybeans. Variable showers in the soybean and rice areas south of New Delhi, provided some relief, but above-normal temperatures increased crop water use.
WESTERN EUROPE: WET AND COOL IN THE NORTH, HOT AND DRY IN THE SOUTH
During June 1998, above-normal rain stretched from England eastward through the Benelux countries, Germany, and Scandinavia, benefitting winter grains in the filling stage and spring grains which progressed through reproduction during the month. However, the precipitation in these areas fell frequently during the month, increasing the potential for disease and raising concerns among growers about crop quality. Farther south, below-normal precipitation in France and Italy's Po Valley continued, which favored winter wheat maturation but limited moisture for summer crop development. Further south, well-below-normal precipitation extended from Spain eastward across Italy and Greece, stressing non-irrigated crops. The dryness in Spain was accompanied by persistent heat, maintaining high crop-water demands. During early July, mostly dry weather in France and Italy's Po Valley favored rapid harvesting of winter grains and oilseeds. Light to moderate showers fell in Germany, slowing early winter grain harvesting but providing favorable moisture for spring-sown crops. Farther south, hot, dry weather continued in Spain, stressing dryland crops and increasing irrigation requirements. During July 12-18, winter grain and oilseed harvesting made some progress in western and southern Europe, although showers caused some delays in the United Kingdom, northern France, and Italy's Po Valley. Above-normal temperatures entrenched over Spain were pushing northward into southern France at week's end. Light to moderate rain kept summer crops well watered across northern Europe. During July 19-25, generally dry weather prevailed over most areas, allowing the swift harvest of winter grains and oil seeds. Hot weather in southern Europe spread north and eastward during the week, promoting rapid development of summer crops and increasing crop moisture requirements. A lack of soil moisture and hot weather in southern France, increased stress on corn and sunflowers, likely in the reproductive to filling stages. Light showers farther north in western France were timely for corn and sunflower development. Elsewhere, dry weather stretched from Spain eastward across Italy into southeastern Europe, stressing dryland crops and increasing irrigation requirement. From July 26 through August 8, winter grain and oilseed harvests continued to advance northward. Widespread rain in southern France and parts of northern Italy favored corn and sunflowers in the filling stage. By August 8, winter grain and oilseed harvests were virtually complete in southern growing areas.
MEXICO: SOUTHERN CORN BELT FAVORED BY RAIN; NORTHEAST BAKES
During June 1998, the rainy season started erratically in the Southern Plateau Corn Belt of Mexico. June rainfall averaged 75 to 90 percent of normal across the eastern Corn Belt, but less than 50 percent of normal across the west. Scattered June showers provided some relief for pastures in north-central Mexico, but hot, dry weather prevailed in the northeast. During the first eleven days of July 1998, widespread showers favored corn germination and establishment across the eastern Corn Belt, but drier weather prevailed in the west. Moderate showers favored pastures in north-central Mexico. Hot, dry weather continued to stress rainfed summer crops in northeastern Mexico. From July 12-18, widespread showers covered the Southern Plateau Corn Belt, aiding corn germination and establishment. The rain helped to offset warm (above normal temperatures) weather. Isolated, heavy showers were reported across the southern coast of Sinaloa due to the formation of a tropical storm. Hot, dry weather continued to bake northeastern Mexico. During July 19-25, lighter showers covered the Southern Plateau, aiding vegetative corn, while showers again favored pastures across north-central Mexico. In the northeast, isolated showers brought limited drought relief. Widespread showers, again covered the Southern Plateau Corn Belt, during July 26 through August 8, favoring vegetative corn, while hot, dry weather returned to the northeast drought area. Temperatures across the northeast drought area remained 2 to 3 degrees C above normal.
CHINA: RICE CROP AFFECTED BY FLOODING
China's 1998/99 rice crop is estimated at 138.0 million tons (milled basis), down 2.0 million or 1 percent from last month due to lower area and yield. Area is estimated at 31.3 million hectares, down 0.2 million from last month and 0.5 million from last year. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, early-rice area dropped 4 to 5 percent this year for various reasons, including low prices and weak demand for the crop. The estimated yield of 6.30 tons per hectare is lower than last year's record yield of 6.32 tons per hectare.
Excessive rain in June and July caused widespread flooding in parts of central and southern China, creating unfavorable conditions for the early-rice harvest and late-rice transplanting. Water levels in lakes and rivers in the Yangtze River Valley remain very high in August and flooding continues to be a major threat. Plant diseases and pests have reportedly flourished in the hot, humid weather this year and are expected to pose a greater-than-normal problem.
Output of early rice (23 percent of total output in 1996) is reported to be lower this year in Hubei, Hunan, Guangxi, and Jiangxi Provinces. Late rice (27 percent of total output in 1996) was transplanted in July and is still in the vegetative stage, and it is too early to assess the impact of flooding on the crop. Late-rice yields will largely be determined by the weather in August and September. Single-crop rice (51 percent of total output in 1996) is grown in Northeast China, the North China Plain, Sichuan, and parts of Jiangsu and Hubei outside the flooded areas. The weather for single rice has been generally favorable and high yields are expected.
CHINA: LOWER WHEAT CROP EXPECTED
China's 1998/99 wheat crop is estimated at 110.0 million tons, down 8.0 million or 7 percent from last month and down 11 percent from last year's record crop. Area is estimated at 29.8 million hectares, down slightly from last year. The estimated yield of 3.69 tons per hectare is close to the 5-year average, but down from the last two years.
The State Statistical Bureau announced that 1998/99 summer grain output was 113.1 million tons, down 14.6 million or 11 percent from last year's record crop. Historically, about 88 percent of the summer grain crop is comprised of winter wheat. The U.S. agricultural counselor's office in Beijing traveled to several of China's major winter wheat producing provinces and reported that winter wheat production, which represents 90 percent of China's total wheat crop, was expected to decline as much as 25 percent in parts of Jiangsu and Anhui Provinces, and as much as 20 percent in parts of Shandong and Henan Provinces. These four provinces accounted for 54 percent of China's total wheat crop in 1997. The primary reasons for the decline are unusually dry weather last fall in northern China and excessive rainfall and cloudiness in central and southern China in late spring.
The spring wheat crop, grown primarily in Northeast and Northwest China, is expected to drop slightly in 1998. The weather was generally favorable through most of the growing season, but heavy rainfall during July and August may result in lower yields.
ARGENTINA: RECORD SUNFLOWERSEED OUTPUT FORECAST FOR 1998/99
Sunflowerseed production in Argentina for 1998/99 is forecast at a record 6.25 million tons, up 1 million or 19 percent from last year's output. Area is forecast at a record 3.5 million hectares, up 13 percent from last season. Area is projected to increase because of anticipated higher returns on sunflowerseed relative to other crops and reduced winter wheat area which will allow for increased area available for the main summer crops. It has been suggested by some that drier weather associated with La Nina might favor sunflowerseed over other crops and this may influence some growers' planting decisions. In Argentina, sunflowers are planted from September through December and harvested from February through May. The 1997/98 year was marked by high early-season expectations due to favorable weather, followed by a disappointing finish due to excessive rain. Crop forecasts were dropped from record production levels on record area to much lower levels based on a reduction of area due to abandonment and below-average yields due to disease and lodging.
EUROPEAN UNION: RECORD GRAIN PRODUCTION FORECAST
The European Union (EU-15) is forecast to produce a record 211.5 million tons of grain (wheat, coarse grains, and milled rice) for the 1998/99 season, up 6.1 million from last year's previous record level. Wheat is forecast at a record 103.3 million tons, up 8.9 million or 9 percent from 1997/98. Coarse grain output is forecast at 106.5 million tons, down 2.9 million or 3 percent from last year, while milled rice production is pegged at 1.7 million, up 3 percent from the previous season. Favorable weather throughout the growing season and a continued 5-percent set aside program are the main reasons why production has soared this season.
For wheat, area is estimated at 17.0 million hectares, down slightly from last season; however yield is projected at a record 6.07 tons per hectare. The yield surpasses the previous record of 5.89 tons per hectare in 1996/97. In France, wheat production is forecast at a record 39.0 million tons, based on a record area and yield of 5.23 million hectares and 7.46 tons per hectare, respectively. In Germany, record wheat output is forecast at 20.5 million tons due to a record area of 2.79 million hectares and record yield of 7.35 tons per hectare. In Spain, Italy, and the United Kingdom, bumper wheat harvests also are forecast.
For coarse grains, area is estimated at 20.0 million tons, down slightly from 1997/98 and yield is projected at 5.33 tons per hectare, down marginally from last year's record level. Corn production is estimated at 35.2 million tons, down 9 percent from last season's record due mainly to a lower yield projection for France and reduced area for Italy. Barley production is forecast at 53.4 million tons, up 2 percent from 1997/98 due to a bumper crop in Spain and continued good crops in France and Germany. Oat and rye production are estimated near last season's levels of 6.5 and 6.1 million tons, respectively. EU-15 oat area is down from last year, while rye area is up.
Rice area in the EU-15 is estimated at 0.4 million hectares, up marginally from last year due to an expansion of Indica varieties in Italy. Italy's production is estimated at 1.0 million tons as favorable weather has boosted yield to 6.23 tons per hectare. Spain, the other major rice producer, is forecast to produce 0.6 million tons, virtually unchanged from 1997/98.
UNITED STATES: CROP CONDITION AND PROGRESS
Above-normal precipitation early in the month kept some already saturated fields under standing water in low-lying areas in the eastern and southern Corn Belt. As the month progressed, corn and soybean development remained ahead of normal, as mostly seasonable weather continued to promote rapid growth. Near the end of the month, soaking rains relieved excessive dryness in some areas of the eastern Corn Belt, but also caused additional flooding in the river bottoms of the lower Missouri and Ohio Valleys, while parts of the Great Lakes region remained dry. Cool weather slowed crop development slightly as the month ended, but also reduced crop moisture requirements.
Extreme heat in the southern Great Plains, Mississippi Delta, and Southeast stressed crops early in the month. Widespread thunderstorms near mid-month brought heavy rainfall to parts of the lower Mississippi Valley and Southeastern States, replenishing soil moisture, revitalizing crops, and extinguishing many Florida wildfires. Crops in the southern Great Plains, western Gulf Coast, southern Appalachians, and adjoining Piedmont areas continued to be stressed by excessive heat and dry soils through most of the month.
Moderate temperatures in the Pacific Northwest provided ideal growing conditions early in the month, while warm, humid weather sped small grain and row crop development in the northern Great Plains. Early-month rains interfered with the winter wheat harvest in the central Great Plains, but improved soil moisture levels that aided row crops. Above-normal temperatures during the last half of the month accelerated small grain ripening in the Pacific Northwest and across the northern Great Plains. Consequently, harvest of wheat and other small grains began 1 to 2 weeks early and progressed ahead of normal through the end of the month.
In California, cool weather carried over from June, further delaying crop development as the month began. However, seasonably dry weather allowed field activities to accelerate. Warmer weather during the second half of the month accelerated crop development, but progress remained up to 3 weeks behind normal when the month ended.
FORMER SOVIET UNION: WEATHER AND CROP DEVELOPMENTS
In July, unfavorable weather adversely affected spring grain and summer crop development in both Russia and Ukraine. Drought conditions worsened in the Volga Valley region in Russia, where well-below-normal precipitation continued an insufficient moisture pattern that has prevailed over the region during the entire growing season. Elsewhere in Russia, unfavorable dryness continued in the eastern portion of the Black Soils Region and North Caucasus. Although the dryness in Russia favored rapid winter grain harvesting, it reduced prospects for corn and sunflowers which advanced through the reproductive phase of development during the month. In Ukraine, below-normal precipitation continued in eastern areas, with a drying trend developing in the south. The dryness in Russia and eastern and southern Ukraine was accompanied by a heat wave that began around July 21 and persisted through August 5, placing moderate to severe stress on summer crops. On most days during the period, maximum temperatures ranged from the middle 30's degrees C to 40 degrees C. From August 6-7, a frontal system pushed through Ukraine and Russia, bringing cooler weather along with scattered showers, helping to stabilize conditions for summer crops. Reports as of August 8 indicated that the harvest of spring grains and pulses, excluding corn, was about 20 percent complete in Russia and about 85 percent complete in Ukraine.
In crop areas east of the Volga Valley, spring grains advanced through the highly weather-sensitive reproductive phase of development during July. Drought continued in the southern Urals and western Kazakstan, causing further declines in yield prospects for spring grains (spring wheat, spring barley, and oats). The unfavorable heat and dryness spread eastward into major grain producing areas of central Kazakstan and adjacent areas in Western Siberia, accelerating spring grain development and lowering yield prospects. On most days during July, maximum temperatures ranged from 30 to 35 degrees C, with temperatures on some days ranging from 35 to 40 degrees C. Since early August, unfavorably hot, dry weather continued in Kazakstan, the southern Urals, and central areas in Western Siberia, hastening early maturity in crops.
Tom Puterbaugh 720-2012 (August 1998)
FEATURE COMMODITY ARTICLES
DURUM WHEAT PROSPECTS FOR 1998/99
Durum wheat production for 1998/99 in selected durum-producing countries is forecast at a record 30.8 million tons, up 6.4 million or 26 percent from last year and the highest since 29.6 million produced in 1991/92. Harvested area is forecast at 16.1 million hectares, up 1.2 million from last season while yield is forecast at a record 1.91 tons per hectare, up 16 percent from 1997/98. Approximately 5 percent of all wheat grown is durum, with the European Union (EU-15), Canada, and the United States accounting for nearly sixty percent of global production. The 1998/99 crop is forecast to be significantly higher than last year due to increases for the United States, EU-15, Canada, Syria, Turkey, Algeria, and Morocco. A premium on durum due to smaller crops last year in most of the major exporters and importers resulted in many countries expanding area.
United States: Total U.S. durum wheat production for 1998/99 is forecast at 3.4 million tons, up 46 percent from last season. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service's (NASS) "Crop Production" report, released on August 12, durum area is forecast at 1.5 million hectares, up 15 percent from 1997/98. About 5 percent of all U.S. wheat grown is durum and about 65 percent of the U.S. durum wheat crop is produced in North Dakota. The North Dakota crop is developing ahead of the 5-year average and moderate scab damage has been found in some early seeded north-central fields. Combining was just underway in Montana and North Dakota as of August 2. Arizona and California's desert harvests are completed. According to NASS, durum production in Arizona and California has risen 80 and 34 percent, respectively, from 1997/98 due to increases in area and yield. North Dakota's output is forecast to rise 44 percent from last season also due to increased area and yield.
EU-15: Durum wheat output for 1998/99 is forecast at 8.6 million tons, up 2.0 million or 30 percent from 1997/98. Production increases are forecast for most EU member States. Total harvested area is forecast at 3.0 million hectares, down 2 percent from last season. The continued strength in durum area is attributed to the EU set-aside program and subsidies which make it more profitable to sow on marginally productive land. Total yield for the EU-15 is forecast at 2.86 tons per hectare, 23 percent above the 5-year average of 2.31 tons per hectare. In Spain, excessively wet weather disrupted planting intentions last fall and caused area to drop below the 1997/98 level. However, during the growing season weather improved and boosted production to a bumper 1.4 million tons, up 26 percent from 1997/98. Italy's production is forecast to increase to 4.5 million tons, up 0.9 million from last season due to improved growing conditions especially in the central and southern regions. For France, the weather has been very favorable throughout most of the season. Production is forecast at 1.5 million tons, up 74 percent from the drought reduced 1997/98 crop. Record yield is forecast at 5.45 tons per hectare.
Canada: Production of durum wheat in Canada is forecast at a record 6.3 million tons, up 2.0 million or 45 percent from the harvest of a year earlier. This season's forecast production smashes the previous record of 4.7 million of 1994/95. Durum area is forecast at 2.9 million hectares, up 0.7 million hectares or 32 percent from last season and 10 percent above the previous high of 2.6 million hectares harvested in 1989/90. Low stocks and relatively high prices caused producers to expand area dramatically. Approximately 80 percent of the durum wheat is grown in Saskatchewan Province. The growing season has been mixed thus far beginning with early-season scattered freezing temperatures and dry pocket, followed by favorable weather across portions of the Prairies Provinces. The national yield is forecast near the 5-year average at 2.17 tons per hectare.
Former Soviet Union: Russia and Kazakstan are the primary producers of durum in the former Soviet Union. Neither State publishes separate durum area or production estimates; however, USDA forecasts Russia's durum production for 1998/99 at 1.4 million tons, down 22 percent from the last season. Hot, dry temperatures in the main durum growing area in the Volga Valley has reduced yield to 0.67 tons per hectare, down 20 percent from 1997/98. In Kazakstan, production is forecast at 0.6 million tons, up 0.1 million from last season as an increase in demand caused producers to plant additional area. Generally, favorable weather allowed increased plantings and aided crop development in northern Kazakstan where most of the durum is produced.
India: Durum production in India for 1998/99 is forecast at 1.0 million tons, down 0.8 million or 44 percent from last year. Although there are no official estimates for durum wheat, reports indicate that durum area is reduced from the previous season due to low price realization and marketing problems. Late plantings, due to excessive rainfall, and poor yields in the Punjab caused durum production to decline this season. About 90 percent of the durum produced in India comes from Punjab and Madhya Pradesh, with Gujarat also producing some minor quantities. Harvest occurs during April and May.
Turkey: Durum output for 1998/99 is forecast at a record 2.4 million tons, up 0.2 million or 9 percent from last year's crop. Favorable rainfall and temperatures boosted yield above last season's level, to 2.18 tons per hectare. Harvested area is forecast at 1.1 million hectares, unchanged from last season as farmers continued planting durum in response to higher support prices. Thrace (European Turkey) and central Anatolia produce the bulk of Turkey's durum crop. The "sunni" insect, which regularly infests the crop, was relatively inactive again this year compared to previous years. Durum wheat production is not broken out in Turkish official production statistics.
Algeria: The 1998/99 durum crop in Algeria is forecast at 1.1 million tons, up 0.4 million or 69 percent from last year's drought-reduced crop. Harvested area is forecast at 1.1 million hectares, up 57 percent from 1997/98 due to sufficient soil moisture for planting. Almost 70 percent of the total area sown to wheat is durum, which is primarily located in the eastern and central production areas.
Morocco: Durum output in Morocco for 1998/99 is forecast at 1.6 million tons, up 0.7 million or 74 percent from last season's crop. Over the last several years, Morocco has alternated between bumper and poor harvests; this season's harvest falls in between. Durum area is forecast at 1.0 million hectares, up 3 percent from last year. The weather was mixed this season with dry spells and periods of above-normal rainfall-- hence average yields were realized. Roughly 40 percent of the wheat grown in Morocco is durum wheat and is grown mainly in the north.
Tunisia: Durum production in Tunisia for 1998/99 is forecast at 1.1 million tons, up 0.3 million or 38 percent from the previous season's poor crop. Early-season rainfall and scattered precipitation thereafter was beneficial for the crop. Yield is forecast at 1.83 tons per hectare, up 38 percent from 1997/98. Harvested area is forecast at 0.6 million hectares, unchanged from last year. About three-fourths of all wheat grown in Tunisia is durum and production is centered in the northern regions of Bizerte, Le Kef, Mateur, Jendouba, and Beja.
Syria: Durum production for 1998/99 is forecast at 2.6 million tons, up 0.7 million or 37 percent from 1997/98. Harvested area is unchanged from the previous season. Rainfall was adequate at sowing in the fall of 1997. Rainfall and temperatures are supportive for good yield potential, with the exception of above-normal temperatures in early-April. About 40 percent of the total-wheat area is grown on irrigated land which is increasing due to the drilling of additional wells and implementation of irrigation projects in northeastern Syria. Nearly two-thirds of Syria's wheat is durum.
Timothy Rocke, Grain Chairperson
Phone: (202) 720-1572
CANADIAN OILSEEDS PRODUCTION
A larger oilseed planted area in Canada this year is expected to result in increased harvested area and greater production. Total Canadian oilseed harvested area (excluding flaxseed) for 1998/99 is estimated second only to the level of the 1994/95 season. However, extended dry weather in the Canadian Prairie Provinces combined with damaging frosts in certain regions will limit yield potential to near average levels.
According to Statistics Canada, oilseed planted area (including rapeseed soybeans, flax, and sunflowerseed) increased 33 percent in 1997/98 from the previous year. In June, Statistics Canada reported oilseed planted area up an additional 9 percent in 1998/99. Producers in 1998/99 reportedly planted 7 percent more rapeseed (canola) and 20 percent more flax while planting 8 percent less area to soybeans than in 1997/98.
This article includes planted area data based on Statistics Canada's June 30, 1998, report "Preliminary Estimates of Principle Field Crop Areas". Production and harvested area data, unless otherwise indicated, are U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates.
Canola: In 1997/98, stronger projected relative returns caused farmers to shift area away from major grains and plant 36 percent more canola acreage. Statistics Canada reports a further 11 percent increase in planted area is estimated for 1998/99 largely because of reduced price expectations for spring wheat relative to other crops. Given current planting estimates and near average yields, canola production in 1998/99 is projected at 7.0 million tons, a 13-percent increase over the previous year.
Canada's increasing canola output is being driven by strong demand in its major foreign and domestic markets. The Canadian industry generally does not segregate transgenic rapeseed from varieties developed through traditional breeding. Because of strong demand by major markets, and rotational concerns which limit potential area, it does not appear that future output will be seriously limited by import restrictions on transgenic varieties.
Domestic demand for Canadian rapeseed production has been enhanced by strong foreign demand as well as increasing crush capacity. Industry sources indicate Canada's canola crush capacity to be in the range of 4.5 million to 5.0 million tons, excluding the capacity of a recently constructed plant in Ste. Agathe, Manitoba which just began operations. Press reports indicate the Ste. Agathe plant would be North America's largest non-solvent, double press rapeseed plant; capacity is reported at 330,000 tons per year.
Soybeans: Increased area planted to soybeans in 1997/98 resulted in record Canadian production of about 2.70 million tons. The increased area was in part due to last year's late, wet Spring which favored soybean production over wheat and corn in eastern Canada. For 1998/99, a return to normal seeding conditions is expected to result in a 6-percent decrease in Canadian soybean output.
As with rapeseed, Canadian soybean output has been encouraged by increasing crush capacity the last several years. The Canadian Oilseeds Processors Association estimates Canadian soybean crushing capacity at 2 million tons, the result of recent expansions in crushing and storage facilities in Ontario.
Sunflowerseed: Relative to rapeseed and soybeans, sunflowers are a minor crop in Canada. Sunflowerseed output in 1997/98 was 65,000 tons, up from 56,000 tons in 1996/97, and production is forecast at 90,000 tons for 1998/99. Statistics Canada estimates that 73 percent of output was produced in Manitoba in 1997/98, 22 percent in Saskatchewan, with the remaining 5 percent grown in Alberta.
Flaxseed: The United States Department of Agriculture does not produce official estimates for foreign flax production, but Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada estimates its domestic flaxseed output for 1998/99 up 31 percent from last year, to 1.1 million tons. The higher output is expected to ameliorate the current situation of very low stock levels. Press reports say the Canadian flax industry delayed plans to market the first transgenic variety of flax this spring, citing fears it would jeopardize access to the EU, Canada's largest foreign market for flaxseed.
(metric tons per hectare)
(thousand metric tons)
Paul Provance, Oilseeds Chairperson
Phone: (202) 720-0882