Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm

Feed weekly outlook: Rains, lower demand pressure grain bids

Old-crop demand 'not that strong anymore'

wheat and barley
(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

MarketsFarm — With feedlots across Western Canada already stocked up on feed barley and wheat for their animals, reduced demand for those crops and recent wet weather have left high-delivered bids mixed.

According to Prairie Ag Hotwire data from Wednesday, high-delivered bids for feed barley remained steady in Saskatchewan at $6 per bushel, went down one cent in Manitoba also to $6/bu. and dropped 28 cents in Alberta to $7.45/bu. over the span of one week.

The price of feed wheat held steady in Saskatchewan at $8/bu., up 10 cents in Manitoba at $7.85/bu. and down 19 cents at $9.39 in Alberta.

“We’re starting to get to the end of old crop and there’s the expectation new crop will be okay, so far,” said Allen Pirness, senior manager of Market Place Commodities in Lethbridge, adding that most grain exports have also been filled.

“Demand is not that strong anymore for old-crop feed grains.”

While barley and wheat growing conditions in Alberta are still mostly dry, they are not as dry as Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Precipitation in Alberta during the last week of May provided the impetus for growers to sell what was left of their old crop.

“We’ve still got some wheat and some barley. Barley stocks are still tight for old crop because of exports, but farmers’ signal to sell the remainder of their old crop was really given by the perception of adequate moisture for the time being,” Pirness said, noting cattle are out to pasture right now instead of feedlots.

Over the next few weeks, what will move the markets for feed grains in Western Canada will depend on what happens both south of the border and in the skies.

“We’re entranced in a weather market right now. We’ll take our signals from the corn market on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT). Everyone’s keeping an eye on the dryness in North Dakota and other parts of the Great Plains and Midwest,” Pirness said.

“Of course, we’ll see what happens here in Western Canada if we could get some timely rains to sustain this crop or not. If not, then we will most definitely see a weather-related rally.”

— Adam Peleshaty reports for MarketsFarm from Stonewall, Man.

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