Manitoba corn yields constricted by dry weather

WINNIPEG, August 23, (CNS) – As the Manitoba corn crop heads into the final stretch of the summer, many producers are likely hoping for better prices in the fall.

The average bid for a bushel of corn in the province remains the same as last year, according to Myron Krahn, president of the Manitoba Corn Growers Association. He says prices are around C$4.00 to C$4.30, the same as in 2016 and 2017.

“The farmgate price hasn’t changed,” he said, “The outlook for new crop is no stronger than that.”

The summer has been a relatively dry one for most of the plants and there are some concerns over yields.

“Some of us are thinking yields might be down because of the dryness, but it is a wait and see thing,” he said. “My hunch is yes, some of the yields will be lower than last year.”

He says the average yield across the province has been around 130 bushels per acre the past couple of years, according to Krahn.

The crop is still roughly a month away from full maturity, with additional dry-down time before it’s combined.

Krahn believes the majority of this year’s crop won’t be harvested until October.

 “A frost in the next three weeks, we don’t want that,” he said.

Krahn says storing the corn could be a popular move this year.

“Probably we’ll see a lot of producers trying to store as long as they can to get into the winter, to get into spring,” said Krahn. “Hopefully there’s a price increase at that time.”  

Usage is flat across Manitoba, according to Krahn.

According to Statistics Canada, seeded area in 2017 was 410,000 acres, up from 2016 when it was just 345,000.

The agency releases its first production estimate of the year on August 31.

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