Manitoba Agriculture expects Manitoba canola acres to remain flat or decline just slightly this spring, provincial oilseed specialist Dane Froese said in an interview April 26.
That’s consistent with what Jason Voogt of Field 2 Field Agronomy Inc. is hearing.
“Our clients haven’t changed their plans,” he said, despite China’s boycott of Canadian canola seed.
After several years of increased soybean plantings, many farmers have cut back and have their rotations in balance and want to keep it that way, Voogt said in an interview April 26.
“I think that makes the most sense really,” he said, adding he’s finding farmers are a bit subdued this spring as they hit the field.
“It’s not just the China thing,” he said, alluding to China’s boycott of Canadian canola. “Crop prices overall are not great.”
In its April 24 seeding intentions report Statistics Canada predicted Manitoba farmers would cut canola plantings by 3.7 per cent from last year’s 3.3 million acres.
Manitoba Agriculture says wheat, oat and flax acres will increase this spring.
StatsCan expects wheat plantings to rise by 13.1 per cent to 3.2 million acres, while oats will increase 9.8 per cent to 532,500 acres.
While StatsCan is predicting sunflower and corn acres will drop by 28.3 and 1.7 per cent, respectively, Manitoba Agriculture predicts sunflower acres will remain steady and corn plantings will go up slightly.
Both Manitoba Agriculture and StatsCan predict lower soybean plantings this spring. The latter projects acreage will fall 16.9 per cent to 1.6 million.
This will be the second drop in soybean acreage since 2017, when a record 2.3 million acres of soybeans were planted in Manitoba.
A lack of rain in late July and early August saw 2017 Manitoba soybean yields drop to the 10-year average of 34 bushels an acre.
The lack of timely rains last year saw average soybean yields fall to 32 bushels an acre.
That and lower soybean prices are seen as reasons for the decline.