The Canadian Grain Commission’s monthly Exports of Canadian Grain and Wheat Flour report shows a cumulative movement of 870,800 metric tons of dry peas shipped from licensed elevators in August and September, the first two months of the Canadian crop year. That is up 55,300 mt from last year’s record pace and 57.8% higher than the five-year average. Of this volume, 62.8% was shipped to India while a further 17.2% was shipped to Bangladesh.
Pea prices could be in for a rally as estimates for India’s imports this crop year continue to climb while exportable stocks on the prairies tighten. Reports from media indicate expectations that anywhere from 5 million metric tons all the way to 10.1 mmt of total pulse imports will be needed to stabilize prices and meet demand in India in 2015-16, which compares to 4.4 mmt of imports in 2014-15 and a four-year average of 3.45 mmt.
At the same time, producer deliveries in Canada are waning along with commercial stocks. The Grain Commission’s week 12 data shows the week’s producer deliveries at 18,500 mt, the lowest weekly deliveries seen this crop year and down from the week 4 high of 250,200 mt. Commercial stocks were reported at 243,200 mt, the lowest weekly reported stocks since week 1, after reaching a high of 544,200 mt in week 5. One last observation is a sharp decline in stocks reported in-transit, shown at 9,800 mt, the lowest weekly in-transit volume seen since week 1 and well below the 106,600 mt high reached in week 6.
Unlike some other crops, it would appear that a significant upward revision in production will not be seen in early December when provincial government estimates are considered. Saskatchewan’s provincial average yield is reported at 31 bushels per acre in that province’s final crop report, an increase of 1.1 bpa over the current Statistics Canada estimate of 29.9 bpa, which could imply an increase in production of 64,065 mt given current harvested acre estimates. As well, the Alberta government’s latest provincial average is 35 bpa, 1.2 bpa above Statistics Canada’s current estimate which would add a further 46,358 mt, for a modest increase of roughly 110,000 mt.
The red and green bars on the attached chart show the August/September exports through licensed facilities as a percentage of total estimated supplies. Given Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s 2015/16 total supplies of 3.615 mmt, a four-year low, 2015 Aug/Sept exports represent 24.1% of total estimated stocks, having increased three consecutive years from a low of 10.4% in 2012/13.
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Cliff Jamieson can be reached at email@example.com
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