Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm

Prairie pea bids perk up, post-harvest

Edible pea bids in Western Canada are showing some post-harvest firmness, as line companies look to secure some supplies.

“Things have definitely perked up a little bit, mainly driven by the line companies and their bulk conventional programs,” said Les Aubin of Walker Seeds at Tisdale, Sask. The peas were moving primarily to India and China.

Smaller companies moving peas by container were struggling a little to keep up with the bids being offered by the larger bulk handlers, he said, given the higher costs in the container market.

The pea harvest is mostly complete across Western Canada, with quality generally good but smaller yields in some areas, according to Aubin.

Wet weather earlier in the growing season wasn’t conducive to the pea crop, he said.

From a pricing standpoint, smaller production of green peas in Canada and the U.S. should keep prices firm going forward, said Aubin.

For yellow peas, the direction the market takes will be partially dependent on demand out of India. Aubin said India had a good pulse crop of its own this year, which could limit its purchases.

Yellow peas, however, remain a relatively cheap protein and the country is continuing to buy. “They’re such a tough market to read, that you really just guess one week to the next what they’ll do,” he said.

Green pea bids, delivered to the elevator, are currently topping out at $9 per bushel, according to Prairie Ag Hotwire data, with yellow peas bid as high as $9.16. Those prices are up 50 and 75 cents a bushel respectively over the past month.

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