Agriculture Canada is forecasting slight declines in dry pea and lentil planted area in 2023, although ending stocks are still projected steady to higher.
New-crop supply-demand estimates released by the government Friday pegged 2023 pea seeded area at 3.21 million acres, down 4.6% from a year earlier amid competition from other crops. Lentil area is seen largely unchanged at 4.27 million.
For peas, production is expected to fall by 5% to 3.25 million tonnes, while supply is forecast to rise marginally to 3.9 million due to higher carry-in stocks from the old-crop marketing year. With the expectation of a small increase in exportable supply, exports are expected to be higher than 2022-23 (up 100,000 tonnes to 2.6 million) and ending stocks are expected to remain unchanged at 650,000 tonnes.
Amid an expected rebound from largely disappointing yields in 2022, new-crop lentil production is forecast to rise by 15% to 2.65 million tonnes. But with lower carry-in stocks, supply is expected to rise by only 200,000 tonnes to 2.8 million. Exports are forecast to be unchanged from 2022-23 at 2.3 million with marginally higher exportable supplies. Ending stocks are expected to rise to 250,000 tonnes, an increase of 150,000 from the current year.
As for other pulse and special crops, the outlook for new-crop seeded area is mostly mixed.
Dry bean seeded area is forecast unchanged at about 297,000 acres because of ample old-crop ending stocks and favourable potential returns for other crops, particularly soybeans and corn. Chickpea area is expected to rise 10.5% to around 260,000 acres, and sunflower acres are seen rising 5% to around 99,000. In both cases, strong prices are expected to attract more acres.
Flax area is projected at 865,000 acres, an increase of 11%.
On the other hand, mustard seeded area is projected to decline 11% to 494,000 acres in the wake of last year’s disappointing yields, and canary area is seen easing 2.5% to 284,000 acres due to better returns for other crops.