Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has come out with new crop acreage and price forecasts for all the significant grains, oilseeds and specialty crops. On some crops, the Ag Canada analysis is calling for big acreage swings. For canola, the prediction is an acreage increase of 10 per cent. While that would be a new record, some analysts are expecting even more canola. A big factor will be how much land is too wet to seed this spring. On flax, the seeded acreage increase is predicted to be a whopping 70 per cent. Of course, acreage was down dramatically in 2010, so this would put flax acreage at closer to normal. The acreage increase in oats is pegged at 27 per cent due to improved prices. Ag Canada is also predicting a recovery in durum acreage, up 28 per cent, due to sharply higher prices and a lowering of carryover stocks. The Canadian Wheat Board hasn’t come out with its new crop price forecasts yet, but Ag Canada is calling for a slight increase in the durum pool return in the upcoming crop year as compared to this crop year. Meanwhile, the pool return for spring wheat is expected to drop by 6 percent in the upcoming crop year. Incredibly, the pool return for malting barley is also predicted to be lower in the upcoming year. I’m Kevin Hursh.

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