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Latest numbers on farm product prices from Statistics Canada

July 23, 2008 - According to numbers from Statistics Canada, the prices farmers received for their products rose in May 2008, compared to a year ago.  Significant gains in crop prices offset losses on the livestock side.


July 23, 2008
By Statistics Canada

July 23, 2008 – Prices farmers received for their commodities rose 14.1% in May 2008 from the same month a year earlier, as significant gains in crop prices offset declines in livestock prices.



Prices that producers received for crops were up 40.2% in May compared with May 2007, continuing double-digit increases which began in November 2006.

Farmers received higher prices for all crops except fruit.



On the other hand, prices for livestock and animal products in May were 3.6% below their May 2007 level, the ninth consecutive year-over-year decline as cattle and hog prices continued to fall. Hog, cattle and calf prices have posted 12 months of year-over-year decreases. For the last nine months, those declines have been double-digit for hog prices.



On a monthly basis, prices farmers received for their commodities were up 2.7% in May from April 2008, as both the livestock and animal products index and the crops index recorded increases.



The Farm Product Price Index stood at 121.3 (1997=100) in May, up from the April index of 118.1.



The overall livestock and animal products index rose 6.6% in May compared with the April index, as all commodities recorded increases. The cattle and calf index increased 4.3% in May and has risen over 15% since January.



Rising feed grain prices and a strong Canadian dollar have pressured hog prices in recent months. However, the hog index rose 26.0% in May from April, as export demand increased. Hog exports were up 20% over last year for the first four months of 2008.



The total crops index was 143.3 in May, edging up over the April level of 142.6, as all commodities increased except potatoes.



Continued demand and uncertainty over new crop supplies helped maintain grain and oilseed prices at record levels. Crop reports put seeding in Canada as progressing well. However, cool wet weather had raised concerns over delayed spring seeding in the United States. Dry areas in the Canadian Prairies also raised concerns on the upcoming growing season and production.