(Resource News International) — The edible pea market in Western Canada remains relatively quiet for the time being, despite the influx of fresh new-crop supplies.
The lack of activity is largely due to an absence of demand from major customer India. Market participants expect the direction the pea market takes going forward will depend on what sort of extent India eventually returns to the market.
“India is just not buying,” said Les Aubin of Walker Seeds at Tisdale, Sask. India, he said, usually accounts for well over half of Canada’s yellow pea exports, so when “they’re not in the market, it’s very slow.”
Pulse companies in India were hoarding peas and have now been pressured by the government to release those supplies, he said.
With talk of 300,000 to 400,000 tonnes of peas being released into the Indian market, any new Canadian business will likely be delayed until late October or November, he said.
At that time, India may have a better sense of how things are shaping up for its own crops. If moisture conditions are looking reasonable in India, buyers in the country won’t be in a panic to buy product in the hopes that they’ll have a good crop of their own in February/March, Aubin said.
Aubin expected farmers in India would be seeding more pulses this year, given the relatively stronger prices compared to other crop options.
India has put in tenders for peas recently, he said, but at prices too low to actually generate any business.
He said India was looking to pay $4 per bushel for yellow peas, while farmers don’t seem willing to let go of them for less than $5 per bushel.
Current Prairie Ag Hotwire prices show yellow pea bids around $4.50 per bushel.
Aubin expected prices would stay in a range of $4.50 to $5.50, but could eventually top $6 if any problems develop with India’s crop.