Canada Markets

Alberta's Harvest Stalled

Cliff Jamieson
By  Cliff Jamieson , Canadian Grains Analyst
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Alberta Agriculture reports that the province's harvest has stalled at 32.9% complete as of Sept. 25, with the cumulative pace veering right on the chart and falling further behind the 2017 and five-year average pace. (DTN graphic by Cliff Jamieson)

Alberta's weekly Crop Report estimates the province's harvest at 32.9% complete as of Sept. 25, up just .3 points from the previous week and 4.7 points higher over the past two weeks. This falls far short of the 61.8% five-year average for this week, with all five regions of the province falling short of their average pace. While the three northern regions have seen progress stalled at less than 13% harvested, the Peace Region is the furthest behind normal with 12.9% of the crop off as compared to the five-year estimate of 61%.

Looking at the two largest crops of spring wheat and canola, an estimated 35% of the spring wheat is estimated to be harvested along with 16.1% of the canola. This pace combined with Statistics Canada's most recent production estimates implies 5.95 mmt of spring wheat, or approximately 26% of the forecast production for Canada, along with 5.36 mmt of canola, or 25.5% of the forecast production for Canada lies in Alberta fields pending harvest.

While quality was not discussed in this week's abbreviated report, quality concerns will be a topic in the weeks to follow. The Canadian Grain Commission's most recent red spring wheat analysis shows of 367 samples submitted from producers in Alberta and British Columbia as of September 25, 323 samples or 88% graded 1 CWRS averaging 14.25% protein. The CGC cautions that these results do not include samples submitted in the two week's prior to the data release date, nor do they represent actual production distribution across grades.

When considered along with the lag in harvest experienced in Saskatchewan, as reported in Thursday's Canada Markets Blog, roughly 11.2 mmt of canola are yet to be harvested, or 53.5% of the forecast crop for Canada, along with 10.2 mmt of spring wheat, or 44.6% of the forecast Canadian crop. This is in addition to the tail end of the peas and durum to be harvested, along with barley, oats, flax and miscellaneous other crops.

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Cliff Jamieson can be reached at cliff.jamieson@dtn.com

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