Statistics Canada says farmers harvested a record canola crop and the agency also increased its estimates for wheat production.
Canola production topped 21.3 million metric tonnes, which was eight per cent higher than the September estimate. It was also more than one million tonnes larger than the average trade prediction.
Dry growing conditions across much of southern Saskatchewan and Alberta were expected to impact wheat production. However, it appears some crops exceeded original expectations. The Statistics Canada estimate for all-wheat production was 30 million tonnes, exceeding the previous estimate by over 10 per cent.
Looking at Saskatchewan, drier weather over many southern and central areas led to lower production numbers for several crops this year.
Total production for wheat, barley, lentils and peas were below 2016 levels.
The two exceptions were canola and soybean. Both crops set records due to significant increases in seeded area.
Canola production in Saskatchewan established a new mark of 11.2 million tonnes . . . up nearly five percent from last year.
Soybean production was 479-thousand tonnes, more than double last year's production.
The official Statistic Canada news release for Saskatchewan is below:
OTTAWA Saskatchewan farmers reported decreases in production for most crops, but soybeans and canola reached new production record highs, Statistics Canada announced today.
These estimates come from a survey of 7,274 Saskatchewan farmers conducted from October 20 to November 13, 2017.
Wheat Total production of all varieties of wheat decreased 11.3% this year to 12.9 million tonnes. The decrease was the result of both lower harvested area (-0.8%) and lower average yield (-10.8%) compared with 2016. Durum wheat, whose production decreased 37.2% to 3.9 million tonnes in 2017, led the overall wheat decrease.
Canola Saskatchewan farmers reported a new high for canola production in 2017, up 4.7% to 11.2 million tonnes. Harvested area rose 14.2% to 12.7 million acres. However, average yield fell 8.3% to 38.9 bushels per acre.
Lentils Total harvested area of lentils fell to 3.9 million acres in 2017, a decrease of 24.7% over the record 5.2 million acres harvested a year ago. Average yield increased 11.1% to 1,297 pounds per acre. As a result, production declined 16.3% to 2.3 million tonnes.
Soybeans Farmers reported a 35.6% drop in average soybean yield this year. However, harvested area jumped to 845,000 acres, a new record high. As a result, overall production also reached a new record high at 479 000 tonnes, more than double the 2016 production.
Dry field peas Production of dry field peas fell 15.9% compared with 2016, to 2.0 million tonnes. The decrease in output was mainly the result of a lower average yield of 33.8 bushels per acre (-15.7%). Harvested area was also down, falling 0.3% to 2.1 million acres.
Barley Barley producers reported a 7.1% decrease in production to 3.1 million tonnes in 2017. Average yield dropped 4.9% over last year, to 66.4 bushels per acre. Meanwhile, harvested area declined 2.3% in 2017, to 2.2 million acres.
Oats Farmers reported a 20.3% increase in oat production in 2017 to 2.0 million tonnes. This increase was the result of a 24.6% rise in harvested area to 1.4 million acres. Average yield, though, fell 3.4% from a year ago to 90.8 bushels per acre.
Flaxseed Production of flaxseed decreased to 447 600 tonnes in 2017, down 5.5% from 2016. The overall decline in output was the result of a 26.7% drop in average yield, to 19.8 bushels per acre. Meanwhile, harvested area rose 29.0% to 890,000 acres.
Mustard seed Production of mustard seed declined 41.8% in 2017 to 94 500 tonnes. The drop was the result of a fall in harvested area (-21.9%) to 285,000 acres, combined with a lower reported average yield (-25.5%) at 730 pounds per acre.
Canary seed Canary seed output fell 2.1% this year to 137 300 tonnes. The decrease resulted from a 10.2% fall in average yield to 1,187 pounds per acre. At the same time, though, harvested area rose 9.0% to 255,000 acres.