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Seeding conditions favourable: Stats Can

Apr. 23, 2015 - Canadian farmers intend to plant more wheat, oats and barley in 2015 than they did in 2014, while canola and soybean areas should decrease slightly.

In Statistics Canada's March 2015 report on principal field crop areas, seeding conditions are seen to be favourable overall, after two years of late seedings in 2013 and 2014.

The March farm survey, which collects information on crop planting intentions, was conducted from March 18-31, 2015, with about 11,500 farmers. Farmers were asked to report their planting intentions for grain, oilseeds and special crops.

Wheat

Nationally, farmers reported that they expect to plant 24.8 million acres in 2015, an increase of 3.9 per cent over 2014. Specifically, seeding intentions for spring wheat indicate a 3.4 per cent gain to 18 million acres, while durum wheat acreage is expected to reach 5.5 million acres, up 15.8 from 2014.

In Saskatchewan, intentions show spring wheat acreage decreasing 4.8 per cent from 2014 to 8.1 million acres in 2015. However, durum wheat acreage is expected to rise 15.5 per cent to 4.9 million acres.

Farmers in Alberta reported the area for spring wheat should grow by 6.6 per cent to 6.4 million acres in 2015. Durum wheat area is expected to rise by 18.2 per cent to 650,000 acres. Manitoba farmers anticipate seeding 3.1 million acres of spring wheat, up 20.8 per cent from 2014.

Canola

Canadian farmers reported they intend to seed 19.4 million acres of canola in 2015, down 4.5 per cent from 2014.

Saskatchewan, historically accounting for approximately half of the canola acreage in Canada, reported a 4.2 per cent decrease compared with 2014 to 10.2 million acres. Alberta farmers also said they planned to seed fewer acres of canola, reporting a 7.7 per cent decline to 6.0 million acres for 2015. Manitoba farmers, however, look to seed 3.1 million acres in 2015, edging up 1.7 per cent over 2014.

Soybeans

The total area to be planted with soybeans is expected to decrease to 5.4 million acres in 2015, down 3.4 per cent from the 2014 record level of 5.6 million acres.

Producers in Ontario intend to seed 2.9 million acres, a decline of 6.5 per cent. Quebec farmers also expect a decrease in area to be seeded to soybeans, down 9.5 per cent to 778,400 acres. Meanwhile, farmers in Manitoba (up 2.4 per cent to 1.3 million acres) and Saskatchewan (up 24.1 per cent to 335,000 acres) anticipate seeding more soybeans. All four provinces sowed record acreages in 2014.

Barley and oats

At the national level, barley seeded area is expected to rise 10.2 per cent from 2014 to 6.5 million acres, while the area seeded with oats is expected to rise 30.3 per cent to 3.6 million acres in 2015. Together, these two crops are expected to account for close to 1.5 million additional acres compared with 2014.

Corn for grain

Nationally, the corn for grain seeded area is expected to increase 6.2 per cent in 2015 to 3.3 million acres. Ontario farmers anticipate planting 2.1 million acres, up 11.5 per cent from 2014. In Quebec, corn for grain area is expected to rise 8.6 per cent to 952,600 acres.

View March intentions of prinicpal field crop areas table.

Subsequent surveys during the year will provide estimates of actual seeded acreages.