Ahead of Wednesday's Statistics Canada production estimates based on producer surveys conducted during November, pre-report estimates reported by the media are pointing to the possibility of an upward adjustment in estimated production for most crops. The exceptions for the crops noted are oats, where the average of pre-report estimates point to final production estimates to be equal to the model-based estimates released in September. Meanwhile, the average of pre-report estimates suggests that Canada's corn and soybean production estimates will be trimmed from estimates released in September.
This year marks the third year that Statistics Canada has released estimates in September that relies on a model based on previously released Statistics Canada seeded acreage estimates, agroclimatic data along with satellite data from the Crop Condition Assessment Program.
The attached graphic shows the difference in the September model-based estimates and the final estimates based on November producer surveys over the past two years (2015 and 2017) for selected crops. For each crop, the move from the light blue bar to the brown bar represents the change from the September estimate to the November estimates released in December for 2015, measured in metric tons. The move from the grey bar to the yellow bar represents this same change in 2016.
As seen on the attached chart, the crop size production estimate was increased between the September estimate and the November estimate for all instances except one, which is the 146,000-metric ton -- or .7% drop -- in the spring wheat production estimate in 2016. In all other cases for the crops selected, the final estimates were revised higher in the final November estimates released in early January.
Over the past two years, the largest average increase in production estimate between September and December reports is barley, which has resulted in an average 11% increase. Close behind is canola, where the increase in estimated production averaged 10.1%, which is almost entirely due to a huge 2.8-million metric ton swing in estimated production from the 14.4 mmt estimate released in September to a final estimate of 17.2 mmt in 2015. Over the two years in question, the average increase in estimated spring wheat production was the smallest of the selected crops at an average 3.9%, largely due to an 8.5% increase seen in 2015.
The dark blue bars on the attached chart point to the September model based 2017 production estimates, while the recent past could suggest that upward revisions could be around the corner.
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