This first poll ran in January as follows:
Question: Canadian canola crush and exports are ahead of last year's pace. Can the industry maintain this pace of demand?
Seventy-five percent of the responses fell within two choices, which points to varying opinions on this subject. The largest response to this unscientific poll, 43%, chose Choice 3: I believe supplies are tighter than expected and buyers will soon scramble to meet their needs.
The next largest response, 32%, of responses selected Choice 1: Supplies are not a limiting factor; I believe this pace can continue for some time.
A smaller number or responses, 19%, suggested price will be the determining factor, choosing Choice 2: It will largely depend on how the soybean market affects canola price.
It is interesting to note that of the responses that pointed to supplies being tighter than expected, this choice was more common with Alberta and Manitoba producers than selections made by Saskatchewan producers.
Another recent poll asked this question: There are media reports that government should consider playing a role in regulating crop rotations, specifically canola, to control the buildup and spread of disease. How do you view this?
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Despite six options presented, all responses fell within just two choices. A total of 63% chose Choice 2: Bad idea, governments should not be involved in controlling rotations -- farmers need to learn to do proper rotations themselves.
The balance of responses chose Choice 4: Keep government out of this, the agriculture industry should be responsible for education or encouraging farmers to adopt better agronomic practices.
The one area of agreement is that this is not a role for government. Prairie responses tended to favour Choice 2, or the need for producers to adopt appropriate rotations, while Ontario producers who weighed in favoured Choice 4, which involves industry input.
Question: What do you project will be the biggest shift in seeded acres in your area in 2017?
Opinions varied on this poll, with a total of eight choices presented with seven of eight receiving responses. Choice 3 received 40% of responses, which points to an increase in canola acres. This choice was the top pick for producers in both Alberta and Saskatchewan, while a much lower percentage of Manitoba farmers chose this option. The earliest of indications from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada point to an expected 3% increase in acres, although official survey-based estimates will be released by Statistics Canada on April 21. Note that Thursday's Canada Markets Blog points to Statistics Canada underestimating canola acres in the March estimates in each of the past five years.
The next-largest response was seen for Choice 4, or lower pulse acres, receiving 20% of responses. This was the second-most-popular response for both Saskatchewan and Alberta producers. Two choices that received equal weighting were Choice 2, or a shift from corn to soybeans, and Choice 7, or it is too early to tell. It is interesting to note that responses from Ontario were split evenly between these two choices.
Only a small number of responses, 4%, responded that it was too early to tell. One additional surprise was that the only Choice not selected indicated an increase in oat acres. Recent media reports are suggesting increased interest in oats given current returns for million quality, although that notion is not supported in this unscientific poll.
DTN 360 Poll
This week's poll asks how you view the prospects of the wheat market for the upcoming year. You can weigh in with your thoughts on this week's poll, found at the lower right of your DTN Homepage.
DTN would like to thank all for their past contributions to this ongoing poll.
Cliff Jamieson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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