Pulse weekly outlook: Manitoba dry beans in good shape

(Peggy Greb photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

MarketsFarm — Despite temperatures ranging from near-freezing lows to sweltering highs and receiving little precipitation, Manitoba’s dry edible bean crop has weathered the conditions well, according to the province’s pulse specialist.

“We’ve had some interesting weather over the last week to two weeks,” Dennis Lange, pulse specialist for Manitoba Agriculture at Altona, said, referring to windstorms around Carman and Winkler which damaged some bean crops.

“Overall, I think the crop is looking OK considering we’re not seeing any large amounts of moisture right now. We’re getting into a bit of a drier period.”

Based on discussions with pulse growers, Lange said no one bean variety is in better condition than the others and weed control is currently the primary focus. He is also projecting 153,000 acres of dry beans to have been planted in Manitoba this year, down more than 30,000 acres from 2020-21.

“It is up from previous years or right in the ballpark as we’ve seen back in 2019,” he said. “Not a lot of weed pressure right now because we’re not getting those sporadic (rain) showers this week. Weed populations have slowed a bit now.”

According to Prairie Ag Hotwire data from Monday, with the exception of small red and black beans, high-delivered bids for Manitoba dry beans have declined. Kidney, great northern and cranberry beans have all decreased by at least 10 cents/lb. compared to last year. However, prices have risen for all varieties over the past month.

“A lot of the contracting was done last winter. I’m not sure how much they would want to forward a contract right now from a buyer’s standpoint,” Lange said. “There may be just a little bit more demand for beans right now.”

There’s one thing bean growers are hoping for right now: “Timely rains,” he said.

“Now would be a good time to get things going and then, towards the end of July in the early pod-filling stage, that rainfall would be really desired right now.”

— Adam Peleshaty reports for MarketsFarm from Stonewall, Man.

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