Manitoba soybean crops are in relatively good shape given the hot, dry conditions seen through most of the growing season. However, with temperatures still unseasonably high in the province, fields would benefit from some timely precipitation in the next week.
“Crops look pretty good so far, but it’s getting to the point where we’ll start worrying if we don’t get any rain,” said Mark Jorgensen, soybean merchandiser with Delmar Commodities.
After wet fields in the spring hampered some seeding operations, what was in the ground benefitted from the heat and sunlight throughout the growing season.
Roger Kissick, of Linear Grain in Carman, agreed that farmers were “pleasantly surprised” with their soybean crops so far. However, “this is a very critical week in Manitoba’s soybean production,” he added, noting that many fields have not seen significant rainfall in a long time.
The soil is getting dry in some areas, but is still too early to hamper yields, said Jorgensen.
Kissick said a lack of moisture at this stage wouldn’t necessarily lead to lost yields, but rather the crops might not end up as large as they could if they don’t receive any rainfall.
Manitoba farmers originally intended to increase soybean acres from the 520,000 seeded in 2010, but industry participants estimated that actual area was likely down on the year due to adverse conditions at seeding time. In its July 31 production estimates released Aug. 24, Statistics Canada estimated this year’s seeded area at 510,000 acres with a yield of 29.5 bushels per acre.
Soybean prices in Manitoba generally track the U.S. futures, accounting for the exchange rate and local transportation factors. New crop pricing in the C$12 per bushel range can currently be found in Manitoba, said Jorgensen.
“Demand is good and the pipeline is fairly tight,” said Jorgensen, adding that the crop is still some time away from getting in the bin. Earlier seeded soybean fields will start to see some harvest operations in September, with the bulk of the crop coming off in October.