Alberta feed market flooded with grain

Feed grain prices in Alberta have come down as producers have rushed to sell downgraded crops.

“Last week the phones were blowing up…right now I think we’re seeing some better weather, so everyone’s outside and the phones are probably going to light up again next week,” said Nelson Neumann, grain trader with Agfinity in Stony Plain, Alta.

Cold, wet and snowy weather throughout September and into October slowed down or stalled harvest in parts of Alberta and Saskatchewan. Crops were downgraded making more barley and wheat feed grain quality.

According to Neumann, prices dropped around 70 cents per bushel for feed wheat due to the weather. During the summer it was hot and dry and there were concerns about supply.

“We’ve seen feed pricing fallen off in general, due to more of it hitting the market. Lot of wheat getting downgraded,” he said.

Producers have been rushing to sell higher moisture wheat and barley, according to Neumann. In the last few weeks Agfinity has seen a lot of tough grain, with 18 to 20 per cent moisture contents.

“You’re seeing a lot of offers all in the 18 percent (moisture range), all with producers needing quick movement. Don’t want to store it, can’t store it, can’t dry it down,” Neumann said.

Feedlots are able to buy as they need currently, according to Neumann. At Agfinity feed wheat bids are currently sitting around C$230 to C$235 per tonne, depending on location. Feed barley is at C$235 to C$240 per tonne, depending on location.

The feed oats market has also been active as crops have been downgraded from milling quality due to the wet weather. According to Neumann, depending on the weight and variety producers can get anywhere from C$250 to C$280 per tonne.

“Most of the oats that are out there are no longer a milling spec. You can still get a decent value out of them as feed at the moment,” he said.

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