Nov. 25 – Is the Peas Outlook Starting to Strengthen?

Despite some slow export activity, the peas outlook might be brightening as we start to think about the 2019/20 crop year.

Current Sales Position:

We are 50% sold for 2018/19 old crop green AND yellow peas.

We are 0% sold for new crop 2019/20 new crop green AND green peas.

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Spot yellow prices across the Canadian Prairies traded sideways in the past week, but are still sitting higher than where they were a month ago. For perspective, they’re also at new one-year highs.

Western Canada Regional Average Spot Yellow Pea Prices

Western Canada Average Spot Yellow Pea Prices

If we thinking more broadly about the peas outlook and start looking at deferred pricing opportunities, there is about a 15 – 20 cent CAD / bushel premium for movement in January.

Western Canada Deferred Yellow Pea Prices

Since we’ve been thinking about moving to 70% before the end of 2018, January 2019 movement period will be for when things are contracted.

The question I’m debating internally is whether or not we should wait for some news from ABARES or Statistics Canada; these agencies release their next crop production update on December 4th and 6th respectively.

Peas Outlook Strengthening?

Agriculture Canada notes that the premium of green peas to yellow peas has widened to $70 CAD / MT (or $1.90 CAD per bushel), up from the $45 / MT ($1.20 / bushel) seen at this time a year ago. This is more normalized and might suggest that the market is returning to the mean.

What this translates to is that there the market is pricing in what the peas outlook is going forward, not just today, but also for the 2019/20 crop year.

That being said, while they’ve been consistently putting out new crop updates, the Indian government did not publish a crop situation this week. We do know though, that from November 16th, planted field peas was tracking more than 12% behind last year’s pace. Regardless, with the slower pace, it’s looking like India’s rabi pulse crop could be smaller than the Indian government is currently forecasting.

While this might change should late monsoon rains materialize, the outlook for this to happen isn’t too high. This in mind, the large carryover of India’s 2017/18 pulse stocks will have to be dipped into more aggressively.

Simply put, this past week there has been more headlines from analysts around the world supportive our narrative from last week that the smaller rabi crop could lead to India becoming a net importer of pulses yet again. This potentially means more Canadian pea exports to India again. The key point here though is the tariffs might not be lowered, even if more imports are needed to satisfy the demand of the world’s largest consumer base of pulses.

Canadian Pea Exports Still Slow

Through Week 16 of the 2018/19 crop year (ending November 18), Canadian pea exports are sitting at a total of 669,600 MT, down 24.4% year-over-year.

2018/19 Week 16 Total Canadian Peas Exports

For Week 16 specifically, Canadian pea exports totalled 16,400 MT

2018/19 Week 16 Weekly Canadian Peas Exports

If we’re thinking about the broader peas outlook, we obviously know that there is likely going to be continued strong demand from China. But in this same vein, we’re also aware of more competition from the Black Sea. As you can tell, Russian and Ukrainian exports are picking up steam and creating more competition in the international marketplace.

Black Sea Pea Exports - 10 Years

Just like in Canada and the U.S. though, it’s likely that we’ll see less peas planted in 2019 in the Black Sea next year given the ROI of barley and wheat in these regions right now. After all, the last time we checked, pea prices in the likes of Russia are still tracking about 10% – 15% lower year-over-year.

Very concretely, the peas outlook is not just challenging for the likes of North American producers, but also those elsewhere around the world.

To growth,

Brennan Turner
CEO
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306-715-4540 (cell)
b.turner@farmlead.com

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FarmLead – North America’s Grain Marketplace

GrainCents

 

Nov. 18 – Pea Exports Are Looking for a Sign

Nov. 13 – Pea Prices Continue to Inch Higher

Nov. 4 –  Are Yellow Peas the Next Soybean?

Oct. 28 – Pea Prices Continue to Look to China

Oct 21 – Pea Exports Starting to Support Pea Prices?

About the Author
Brennan Turner

Brennan Turner is the CEO of FarmLead.com, North America’s Grain Marketplace. He holds a degree in economics from Yale University and spent time on Wall Street in commodity trade and analysis before starting FarmLead. In 2017, Brennan was named to Fast Company’s List of Most Creative People in Business and, in 2018, a Henry Crown Fellow. He is originally from Foam Lake, Saskatchewan where his family started farming the land nearly 100 years ago (and still do to this day!). Brennan's unique grain markets analysis can be found in everything from small-town print newspapers to large media outlets such as Bloomberg and Reuters.