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Soybeans at at the 40 percent flower-stage, on average in the U.S. this week. Typically these are 66 percent at time of the year. Cool, wet conditions slowed growth this year and resulted in some unseeded acreage.  |  Michael Raine

Canola maintains, soy loses

Despite soybean’s retreat, canola remained in positive territory. The bigger oilseed has remained in surplus as the Sino-American trade frictions wear on. Monday’s USDA crop condition report put half the American crop in good-to-excellent range, 35 percent in fair and 12 percent in poor-to-very-poor condition. The American soybean crop has seen significant weather delays. USDA […] Read more

Corn and other crop commodities slide back while livestock improves.  |  Michael Raine photo

How about that weather – market?

The weather market has settled in nicely. With every forecast and sunny hour the market swings up or down, the persistent sideways-across-the-bottom of last year appears to have gone on summer holidays. Last week’s gains of a few points on most crops saw those taken back as markets moved on favourable weather for crops, warm, […] Read more

Heat in the U.S. and Europe cause buyers and traders to take another look at their positions on ag commodities for the end of the week.  |  Michael Raine photo

Heat, shorts and covering raises crops

Canola rose on American soybean trades as the market in Chicago appeared to be busy covering short positions on the big oilseed. Combined with hot and dry weather in the region and the coming forecasts for the Midwest soybeans were up 20.25 US cents per bushel for August, September and November contracts. Soybeans finished the […] Read more


The growth in organic pea production is mostly positive, but it may have happened before the marketplace was ready.  |  File photo

Prairie organics bounce back

In 2013, organic agriculture in Western Canada was suffering. The industry was losing producers and struggling to attract new entrants. The suffering is now over. Since hitting a low of 1,170 organic crop producers in 2013, the industry has been booming. As of 2018, there were 1,756 organic crop producers on the Prairies — a […] Read more

Alberta: home of oil and organic food

Albertans like organic food. Organic industry statistics suggest that 74 percent of Albertans buy organic food weekly. That’s higher than consumers in Manitoba and Saskatchewan, where 62 percent of shoppers buy organic weekly. The strong demand in Alberta is likely explained by millennials, who tend to self-identify as “ethical” consumers, although the median age in […] Read more


Valerio Primomo, a vegetable breeder at the Vineland Research & Innovation Centre in Ontario, is the scientist behind Radiance, a short-season sweet potato. Primomo believes the variety will eventually be grown across Canada because it is suitable for most agricultural regions of the country.  |  VRIC photo

Sweet potato uptake slower than expected

New, shorter season variety expected to displace imports over the long term, but this year’s launch was disappointing for its developer

This year was scheduled to be the launch of a new sweet potato variety in Canada. The launch didn’t turn out quite as expected, as only a dozen acres were planted in 2019. The variety, called Radiance, is a short-season sweet potato that matures in 118 to 122 days, making it suitable for many agricultural […] Read more

The best hope may be to convince the rest of the world of the need to revive and strengthen international institutions such as the World Trade Organization.  | REUTERS/Ruben Sprich photo

Canada must work to save international rules-based order

Our experience with superpower conflict during the Cold War with Russia does not give us much guidance in our new challenges with China. For all its military might and geopolitical meddling, Russia and its bloc of Eastern European satellite states were never much of an economic power. China, however, has become the second largest economy […] Read more

A letter that legislators sent to the U.S. chief agricultural trade negotiator claims that only three percent of spring wheat varieties grown in the northern states are eligible for Canadian Western Red Spring designation at Canadian elevators.  |  File photo

U.S. senators demand grain access to Canada

American lawmakers don’t appear to be linking harmonization request to ratification of U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement

Four American senators want Canada’s grain industry to “level the playing field” when it comes to the trade of wheat across the United States-Canadian border. Senators Tina Smith (Minnesota), John Hoeven (North Dakota), Kevin Cramer (North Dakota) and Steve Daines (Montana) signed a letter dated July 8, arguing that Canada needs to change its grain […] Read more


Farmers should expect difficult trade climate to continue

It’s difficult to imagine the world falling back into the pre-2017 order. It’s easy to see the world trading order getting worse — much worse. That’s what I concluded from reading the Bank of Canada’s July monetary policy report and seeing its news conference afterward. It also highlighted to me the tough situation Canada and […] Read more

Churchill shipping resumes, but grain is not included

WINNIPEG — The first cargo ship in two years left the northern Manitoba Port of Churchill July 10, moving supplies to communities in Nunavut. Rehabilitation efforts at North America’s only deep-water Arctic port are still underway, but there are expectations business through the facility will eventually include grain as well. OmniTrax, the previous owner of […] Read more