Good day to all our hard-working producers on their combines and sprayers. Harvest is just heating up and it will be very variable across the prairies. We took a drive last week from Brandon to Whitewood SK up to Canora SK and then back to Brandon by way of Russell MB. I was surprised how good the crops were on most of that trip. Going west from Brandon it looked as though the yields would start to drop as we went west. Going north from Whitewood they did improve as we approached Yorkton. On our return trip the crops got better the further east from Yorkton we went. From Russell to Minnedosa I would have to say they will have a good average crop.
There are many places in SK and AB that don’t have a good crop. Was talking to a producer in Arcola SK who was battling grasshoppers in his 10-bushel durum so they wouldn’t move into his canola, which still had potential. Best summation is that crops will be variable. My guesstimate is 80% of normal yield when you average the prairies as a block. Not a crop failure but some guys are going to get hurt.
Some things that have came up in the last month across our desks that we would like to mention. I am sure you have read some of this before, but all that means is we think it is worth mentioning again. I had an enquiry from a producer about glyphos at harvest. We took the question up the chain to our buyers. Here is what we found out:
Oats: Most buyers prefer no glyphos, some will not touch glyphos sprayed oats whereas others have markets and can work with both. They do need to know if the oats have glyphos or not as it will be a big issue if shipped to the wrong end user. All the end users test some of the product that come into their plants. Some of them test every load. This just means that producers need to keep good records if they end up with the same crop pre harvested two different ways. The issue is that if glyphos contaminated grain gets dumped in a none glyphos facility the producer that shipped the glyphos grain can be liable for all losses that are caused by the contamination.
Yellow peas: The buyers had much the same message. There are more markets for glyphos free. Possibly a bit of a premium but we are seeing that incentive disappear. Rather it seems the translation is there is a discount for the glyphos treated peas not a premium. But you have to remember this is from the guys that think they are doing you a favor by bidding high prices then charging a 1% handling/elevation fee. So yes, there are markets for sprayed and glyphos free peas but ultimately there are more options for glyphos free.
Just make sure you keep good samples in an airtight container and that you clean all your harvest equipment when you switch crops.
Another little thing that caused headaches for a producer this month was that he had dumped screenings back on top of his good grain and forgot about it. When this was shipped there were discounts for excessive dockage applied. If we had known, we could have made sure the high dockage load went to a different market that had no issues with that kind of product. Please be sure to inform your broker of exactly what you have. As unfortunately the discounts always run downhill to you.
We have had many inquiries about new crop pricing on several crops. What we are finding out currently most processors/buyers have good coverage short term but there is still decent demand further out. As an example, we were looking for bids on no glyphos yellow peas in western MB. The best bids we had were from the same buyer. Big spread from off the combine to mid winter. $330 ($8.90/bus) FOB farm for Aug/Sept move and $355 ($9.60/bus) for Dec/Jan movement. That is a pretty decent carry for 3 months deferred delivery. Nearly $0.70/bushel.
We have talked about what we think going forward we will see for prices. There will be some downward pressure nearby just because there is always harvest pressure. Will the smaller crop translate into big gains? Who knows. My personal thoughts are that if you don’t need to sell oats or flax for either bin space or cash flow, be patient. But please remember that my thoughts are possibly worth what you pay for them. All other crops time will tell. It is strange how often on a year that is perceived to have a small crop the best price happens within 90 days of harvest.
As harvest approaches this might be a good time to think about what you need to move at harvest and what you can wait on. If you need immediate movement, be sure to give us a heads up so we can keep an eye out for marketing opportunities. Same as always. Keep good samples, make sure you know what you must sell especially regarding moisture in your oats and rye. All markets for these two crops insist on 13.5% moisture. Discounts to apply if over and possible rejection if too high.
We are going to have good markets for rye, both hybrid and open pollinated. Glyphos isn’t a market killer, but it will keep you out of the premium cover crop market. But if harvest conditions dictate, spray your rye. It is worth more sprayed and, in the bin, as high FN #2 or better rye- than sprouted and only good for feeding cows or growing mushrooms.
Quick reminder, Reed will be in Olds Alberta this evening co-hosting a happy hour with Combyne, Farmbucks, and Quality Grain. The event runs from 4:30-6:30 at Our Flames Restaurant and Lounge. We ask everyone to register at the Eventbrite page if you are interested in attending. There will be complimentary appetizers and drinks and ample time to connect and network with us and other attendees.
Have a good and safe harvest and don’t be shy with sharing yields you are seeing as the crop is coming off. We will share our findings across AB/SK/MB.
Till next month,
Marketer - Brandon, MB
204-729-1354 - Office
204-761-8320 - Cell