Declining prices damping interest in durum in North Dakota

A recent decline in durum prices south of the border will likely lower durum acreage in North Dakota, says an official with the North Dakota Wheat Commission.

Durum prices are fairly close to spring wheat values right now, “which doesn’t help durum acreage at all,” said Erica Olson, the commission’s marketing specialist.

“It will be tough for durum to gain acreage this year, because of the price issue… and because some producers are turning away from durum due to the risk (of growing it),” said Olson, noting both U.S. and global stocks of durum are “fairly good.”

Moreover, wheat acres in general are facing competition from soybeans and corn in her state, said Olson. Dry seeding conditions would favour wheat, but snow cover is good in most of the state, she said.

North Dakota farmers planted 1.35 million acres of durum in 2012 and 5.35 million acres of other spring wheat, according to USDA data.

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Phil Franz-Warkentin - MarketsFarm

Phil Franz-Warkentin writes for MarketsFarm specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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