Lentil prices remain at record prices, with large-green lentils and red lentil prices both priced at levels which are 76% higher than year-ago levels, according to a combination of Saskatchewan Agriculture and Statpub.com data.
Yellow peas, at $12.07/bu, are 51.3% above year-ago volumes, while green peas bids are reported to average at $9.18/bu, up 6% from last year.
This year will certainly be a test of supplies, with little-or-no incentive to hold stocks. Statistics Canada's official export data as of the end of November would suggest that nearly 50% of the estimated 2015/16 lentil supplies and 36% of the estimated dry pea supplies have been exported, which suggests that supplies could dwindle real fast in 2016.
New crop prices are also attractive, with No. 1 lentils (all varieties) ranging from 30 to 45 cents/lb, while No. 1 green and yellow peas are ranging from $8.80 to $9.50/bu. Acres will go up, although early indications suggests that seed availability will be a limiting factor.
2016 has been named by the United Nations as the International Year of Pulses, with stated objectives to:
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-- Raise awareness about the important role of pulses in sustainable food production and healthy diets and their contribution to food security and nutrition;
-- Promote the value and utilization of pulses throughout the food system, their benefits for soil fertility and climate change and for combating malnutrition;
-- Encourage connections throughout the food chain to further global production of pulses, foster enhanced research, better utilize crop rotations and address the challenges in the trade of pulses.
Surprisingly, a local Calgary television news item on food inflation interviewed people in a mall food court on how they are dealing with the rising cost of food, given Canada's weakening currency, concluding that three out of five or 60% would not consider trying pulses as a means of addressing higher food costs.
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