Canada Markets

Saskatchewan Crops off to a Good Start

Cliff Jamieson
By  Cliff Jamieson , Canadian Grains Analyst
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Saskatchewan crops are off to a good start, with the Crop Condition Index for selected crops well above last year as well as the average of the earliest crop ratings reported. (DTN graphic by Nick Scalise)

Much improved moisture conditions over recent weeks in Saskatchewan has led to very favorable crop ratings reported in the initial condition ratings released for 2016 as of May 30.

In order to compare the trend in the crop ratings over this crop year, a crop condition index was created for several grains utilizing DTN's format which assigns a weighting of 3 to the Excellent category, a weighting of 2 to the Good category, a weighting of 1 to the Fair category, a weighting of minus 1 to the Poor category and a weighting of minus 2 to the Very Poor category. The formula becomes:

CI = (%Excellent*3)+(%Good*2)+(%Fair*1)+(%Poor*-1)+(%Very Poor*-2)

Where CI is the Condition Index

The potential range for ratings ranges from minus 200 to 300, while DTN views the normal range from 0 to 180.

For example, Saskatchewan Agriculture's latest crop ratings pegged the spring wheat crop as being 22% Excellent, 72% Good, 6% Fair, 0% Poor and 0% Very Poor. The index would be calculated as follows:

CI= (22*3)+(72*2)+(6*1)+(0*-1)+(0*-2)

Where CI = 216

As seen on the attached graphic, the condition rating for the selected crops is above 200 for all crops except for soybeans which are pegged at an index of 193. When compared to the index calculated for the same period in 2015, the first index created for 2016 ranges from 25% higher for oats, from 166 to 207, to 114% higher for canola, where the condition index jumped from 97 in 2015 to 208 in 2016.

The average Crop Condition Index shown on the chart is based on the average of the first crop condition estimates reported over the past five years, although the soybean index is based on the past two years.

According to the National Weather Service maps, the next five days will be mostly free of moisture in the western Prairies, although some moisture is expected for Manitoba over the weekend. A system is expected to bring further precipitation to the western Prairies late in the seven-day period, with up to an inch possible across central Alberta and a half inch possible for western Saskatchewan.

DTN's Five Day Highs Compared to Normal chart shows temperatures to be lowerr than normal in the eastern Prairies while gradually warming as you move west, with southern and western Alberta as much as 7 to 9 C above normal.

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