Strong 2016 Canola Crop Could Be Just the Ticket to Encourage More Acres Across the StateFri, 10 Jun 2016 19:36:12 CDT
Canola harvest is nearly completed across the state, and Dr. Ron Sholar, executive director of the Great Plains Canola Association, says it’s the best crop since 2012. Although the winter was fairly dry, spring rains saved the crop, and he says he’s seeing 35 to 45 bushel yields and even some in the 50s. In addition, the oil is good quality, which means a lot of producers will not be discounted.
“What we’re hearing this year is we’re right where we need to be,” he says. “Obviously oil content is an issue a bit for us here in the south compared to the north, but good quality this year.”
Sholar says canola prices have historically been highest “right off the combine.” Recent $6 to $7 cash prices leave a $3 spread between canola and wheat, which is leaving some producers wishing they had a few more acres to harvest.
“We always say in the industry you need $2 to pay for those extra production costs for canola, so $3 makes it an even better deal.”,” he says. “I know a lot of our growers who have canola are saying ‘I wish had planted more,’ and I know former growers who are saying ‘I wish I had planted some.’”
Moving forward, Sholar is optimistic about canola in Oklahoma. Canada has decreased the amount of canola acres planted, which leaves more opportunity for U.S. farmers to pick up the slack.
Sholar says that while several new crops have failed to take off in Oklahoma, canola is an exception because it grows during the state’s best environmental conditions and it’s a complimentary crop to wheat. In fact, he says producers often see a 15 to 25 percent yield gain for wheat following canola.
“We’ve said so many times we’re not in competition with wheat,” Sholar says. “We want to work with the wheat industry because a strong wheat industry will make a strong canola industry and vice versa.”
Listen to Dr. Sholar talk more about canola’s potential in Oklahoma by clicking on the LISTEN BAR below.
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