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Moisture conditions improve across western Canada but dry pockets remain
CNF Canada, June 11, 2004
The Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) today projected a western Canadian wheat and durum crop of 22.1 million tonnes for the 2004-05 crop year, up slightly from 21.1 million tonnes in 2003-04. The projection for the 2004-05 barley crop is 11.9 million tonnes, up from 11.4 million tonnes in 2003-04.
"Recent rainfall has improved crop production prospects across most of Western Canada," said Bruce Burnett, Director of Weather and Crop Surveillance, speaking at the CWB's annual weather and crop conditions industry briefing. "However, poor subsoil moisture levels in northern and central areas of Saskatchewan continue to cause concern."
In parts of eastern Manitoba, Burnett noted, the problem has been too much precipitation, which has put crop production in the area at risk.
"Overall, crop development has been slowed down by cooler temperatures throughout most of May," he said, adding temperatures during the month were two to four degrees Celsius below normal across the Prairies.
At the briefing, the CWB's weather and crop surveillance experts Burnett, David Przednowek and Guy Ash also provided an overview of the international situation. Production is expected to recover in Europe, Russia and the Ukraine, where winterkill followed by drought and excessive heat caused significant problems in 2003. Wheat and durum production is projected to drop in the United States, with the winter wheat crop in the Southern Plains experiencing significant stress caused by excessive heat and drought. The lingering effects of three consecutive years of drought are still present in parts of Montana and South Dakota.
Among major importers of western Canadian grains, production of wheat in China is expected to decline further this year as the planted area continues to fall. North Africa, which is an important market for western Canadian durum, is expecting another bumper crop after a second consecutive year of timely rainfall. However, recent rains in North Africa and southern Europe have caused some degradation of the quality of the durum crop.
Overall, the CWB is projecting world wheat production levels to increase from 551 million tonnes in 2003-04 to 589 million tonnes in 2004-05, over five million tonnes short of projected global consumption.
Controlled by western Canadian farmers, the CWB is the largest wheat and barley marketer in the world. As one of Canada's biggest exporters, the Winnipeg-based organization sells grain to more than 70 countries and returns all sales revenue, less marketing costs, to Prairie farmers.
MGR Archive 14.6.2004
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Russia Rapan $ 700
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