Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm



The Good, Bad & Ugly

The Good, Bad & Ugly

The Good: What were you doing back in July of 2013? The reason I ask is that this was the last time the nearby canola contract closed above the C$600 per tonne mark. The 2020 rally in canola continues unabated this week with nearby January futures closing the day at C$601.70 per tonne. This pushed cash prices up to the C$12.50 to C$13.50 per bushel range for most Prairie locations. With soybeans rallying by 14 to 15 cents per bushel, the value canola compared with soybeans moved less than C$1.00 per tonne. Technically, the next stop is the C$620 per tonne range.

The Bad: The news today from Europe was all focussed on the Egyptian tender and the fact Romania (120,000 tonnes) and Ukraine (115,000 tonnes) were the chief suppliers. The bad news is that the main growing areas from northern France to Ukraine are extremely dry and concerns about the 2021 crop are beginning to increase. The dryness extends into Russia and both Russia and Ukraine are limiting wheat exports in the first half of 2021. Wheat markets will be focussed on the prospects for the northern hemisphere crop as we move through the 2021 growing season.

The Ugly: Despite all the good news on the vaccine front, the number of cases and deaths continue to rise in Canada. As of yesterday 468,861 people in Canada have been infected and 13,553 people have died. Many of the readers know of someone, who knows someone who has passed away from this disease. We tend to look at the COVID-19 situation in purely economic terms, but this has a very large impact. The population of the town I grew up is about 500 people. The average number of deaths over the past week in Canada according to the Globe and Mail is 776. Unfortunately this number of deaths is likely to continue through the next month, until the number of cases begin to drop.