The April release of the Canadian Grain Commission's Exports of Canadian Grain and Wheat Flour report shows 177,800 metric tons of dry peas exported through bulk channels in the licensed grain handling system in April. This is well-below the 418,200 mt shipped in the same month of the 2016/17 crop year, although it is the largest monthly volume shipped in six months and the third largest monthly volume shipped in the August-through-March period this crop year.
If we look at May data obtained from individual shipping weeks in the CGC's Grain Statistics Weekly report, we see that bulk May exports through licensed facilities will be reported higher, with 304,200 mt reported in the Week 40 (week-ending May 6) to Week 43 (week-ending May 27) period, an approximation for monthly activity.
As seen on the attached chart, pea exports are pushing higher at a time of year when exports tend to slow. For example, in 2016/17, monthly shipments hit their spring peak in the month of April at 418,200 mt, while exports slowed over the final three months of the crop year.
The one difference is China, who has been purchasing the lion's share of Canada's bulk exports on a monthly basis, given the absence of trade with India. As of March, China had purchased 64.4% of bulk exports this crop year at 890,400 mt, as compared to 654,800 mt of the bulk exports shipped in the same period in 2016/17, which accounted for 21.6% of total bulk exports.
Pea exports should easily be on track to meet or exceed the current AAFC target of 2.5 million metric tons. Bulk exports could be reported close to 1.7 mmt by the end of May, while non-bulk exports at the end of March were approximately 570,000 mt or 47.5% higher.
Cliff Jamieson can be reached at email@example.com
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