China’s demand for Canadian canola meal could rise

There are strong indications that China’s demand for Canadian canola meal will be on the rise in the near future, especially after a report from the Canola Council of Canada (CCC) showed dairy production increases when cows consume canola meal.

According to a joint Sino-Canadian study released Friday morning, when used in dry rations, Canadian canola meal increased daily milk production by 0.6 kilograms per cow — roughly just over half a litre of milk.

“This study does more than just demonstrate a link between canola feed and the quantity of milk produced,” Wang Ruojun of the China Agricultural University said in a CCC news release. “It makes clear that canola provides an answer to a challenge that has vexed Chinese dairies for years: how to raise both the quality and quantity of milk produced without raising cost disproportionately.”

Currently, China uses nine million tonnes of rapeseed in cattle feed each year, even though it is less efficient at milk production than its Canadian canola counterpart.

Council president Patti Miller said the study was important for relationship-building and also shows Canadian canola is superior to competing countries canola.

“We believe that the quality of Canadian canola is quite superior to Australian canola,” she said during a teleconference from China.

“We’ve done a lot of work with these Chinese dairies and the relationships we build when we do projects like this go a long way to differentiating our product from competitors’.”

Canada’s top agricultural export to China is canola. During 2012 calendar year, sales of seed, oil and meal to China brought in C$3.1 billion or more than 50 percent of Canadian agri-food exports to China.

— Brandon Logan writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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