Canada to set new canola oil export record

Canadian canola oil exports are projected to have more than doubled over the past six years, as Canada’s domestic crush has increased, and demand continues to grow.

Back in 2004-05, Canada exported 900,000 tonnes of canola oil, while in 2010-11 the country is pegged to export 2.34 million tonnes, which would be a new record. The previous record was in 2009-10, when Canada exported 1.819 million tonnes.

Chris Beckman, oilseed analyst with the market analysis group of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Winnipeg, said the increase was primarily thanks to the U.S., which will import 56 per cent of Canada’s canola oil exports.

“They (the U.S.) are diverting so much of their soyoil, and canola oil is known as a healthier oil because of lower saturated fats, so it is filling that niche in the market,” Beckman said.

The U.S. is pegged to import 1.3 million tonnes of Canadian canola oil in 2010-11.

The other major purchaser of Canadian canola oil in the current crop year is China, projected to buy 800,000 tonnes of product.

Canola oil exports in the 2011-12 crop year are projected to come in at the exact same number as the current year, but Beckman said the number has the potential to be higher.

“A lot of the exports will depend on the crush volumes. If we get good production and have enough that the crushers can buy and process it, then we could see exports continue to rise,” he said.

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