Canola stocks key in upcoming StatsCan report

Market participants will be monitoring a Statistics Canada report due out next week to confirm aggressive canola use to date and expectations for tight supplies at the end of the crop year.

StatsCan will release its updated grain stocks in all positions report on Tuesday (Feb. 5) for inventories of the various crop commodities at Dec. 31, 2012.

There will also be some attention paid to whether the government agency has made any significant changes to production forecasts, said Jerry Klassen, manager for GAP SA Grain and Produits in Winnipeg.

There are signs that canola production has been understated and that the estimate will need to be increased in order to avoid a negative ending stocks projection for the crop, he said.

"The numbers from the report will definitely be used to fill in some of the blanks among the supply/demand tables market players are currently using," said Mike Jubinville, an analyst with ProFarmer Canada in Winnipeg.

Usage will be an important factor in the report for both canola and the grains, especially wheat and barley, he said.

In terms of canola, domestic processor demand has been extremely strong and has shown no signs of letting up despite the recent rise in futures prices, Jubinville said.

Export demand has also been strong, making the carry-out position for canola looking extremely tight.

The market analysis division of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has pegged Canadian canola ending stocks at the end of the 2012-13 crop year at an very small 350,000 tonnes. Any carry-out projection below one million tonnes for canola is considered extremely tight.

Klassen said the usage estimates for wheat and barley will be looked at mainly from a feed perspective.

– Dwayne Klassen writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

Table: Preliminary trade estimates for some crops included in the Statistics Canada grain and oilseed stocks and positions report. Figures are in millions of metric tonnes.

  Stocks as Stocks as
  of Dec. 31, 2012 of Dec. 31, 2011
  (Estimate) (Actual)
All wheat 21.550 – 22.602 20.962
   Durum 3.650 – 3.894 3.406
Oats 2.054 – 2.585 2.034
Barley 4.650 – 5.325 5.117
Flaxseed 0.425 – 0.575 0.360
Canola 7.150 – 7 650 9.244
Soybeans 2.850 – 3.125 2.551