Production of principal field crops, September 2012

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Prairie farmers anticipate higher wheat production as well as a decline in canola this year compared with 2011. In Ontario, farmers expect an increase in production of corn for grain, while Quebec producers anticipate a record soybean crop.

With the harvest well underway, weather conditions in the last few weeks may have had an impact on yields for certain crops. For example, disease may have contributed to lower canola yields in parts of the Prairies, and drought may have affected corn for grain yields in Eastern Ontario.


Despite a higher harvested area compared with 2011, Prairie farmers anticipate an 8.1% decline in canola production to 13.2 million tonnes. This is a result of a 17.5% drop in yield to 28.2 bushels per acre.

Manitoba is the lone Prairie province to anticipate higher canola production. Farmers there expect a 24.7% rise in production to 2.1 million tonnes, the result of a 30.3% increase in seeded area.

In Saskatchewan, production is expected to decline 16.7% to 6.1 million tonnes in 2012. This is the result of a decrease in yield from 32.9 bushels per acre to 25.0 bushels. The lower yield offsets a record harvested area of 10.8 million acres, up 9.6% from 2011.

In Alberta, canola production is anticipated to drop 6.4% to 5.0 million tonnes despite an expected record harvested area of 6.3 million acres. The yield is expected to fall from 39.0 bushels per acre in 2011 to 34.9 bushels per acre.


Nationally, total wheat production is expected to reach 26.7 million tonnes in 2012, up 5.8% from 2011. This increase is anticipated despite a decline in average yield from 44.0 to 42.1 bushels per acre. The harvested area is expected to increase 10.4% to 23.3 million acres.

Provincially, farmers reported increases in wheat production in both Manitoba (+73.6%) and Saskatchewan (+7.2%). In Alberta, farmers reported a 5.9% decline, the result of a combined 2.0% drop in yield and a 3.9% decline in harvested area.


Canadian farmers expect a barley production of 8.6 million tonnes, up 10.8% from 2011, the result of a 15.7% increase in harvested area to 6.8 million acres. At the same time, barley yields are expected to decline 4.4% to 58.3 bushels per acre.

Farmers in all three Prairie provinces anticipate increases in barley production. The crop in Manitoba is expected to more than double (+117.7%) to 568 800 tonnes.


Nationally, total soybean production in 2012 is expected to remain virtually unchanged at 4.3 million tonnes (+0.8%).

In the East, Quebec farmers are expecting a record high production of 810 000 tonnes. This is a result of a 4.0% increase in yield to 41.4 bushels per acre, offsetting a 2.7% decrease in harvested area.

In Ontario, production is set to decrease 7.1% to 2.8 million tonnes. This is as a result of a 14.7% decrease in yield to 38.3 bushels per acre, despite a record harvested area of 2.6 million acres.

In Manitoba, farmers anticipate a record soybean production of 661 300 tonnes, up 59.9% from 2011. The previous record of 435 400 tonnes was set in 2010. Average yield is expected to increase 10.9% to 29.6 bushels per acre.

Corn for grain

At the national level, the production of corn for grain is anticipated to reach 11.6 million tonnes, up 8.3% from 2011.

In Ontario, corn for grain yield is expected to be 134.1 bushels per acre, down 11.5% from 2011. Nevertheless, production is anticipated to rise 2.6% to 7.4 million tonnes, the result of a record harvested area of 2.2 million acres, up 16.0% from 2011.

Quebec farmers expect production to increase 15.6% to 3.4 million tonnes in 2012. This reflects a 2.8% increase in yield to 135.8 bushels per acre combined with a 12.4% increase in harvested area to 982 200 acres.

Note to readers

The September Farm Survey of field crop production covering about 11,700 Canadian farmers was conducted from September 4 to 11, 2012. Farmers were asked to report their estimated area, yield and production of grains, oilseeds and special crops.

Final production estimates for 2012 will be released on December 5, 2012 and are subject to revision for two years.

Auxiliary data source: As an additional tool to assess growing conditions of field crops during the crop year, readers are invited to visit the Crop Condition Assessment Program web application, using remote sensing technology (satellite images). Readers can monitor a vegetation index of crop land on a weekly basis.

Available without charge in CANSIM: tables CANSIM table001-0010, CANSIM table001-0017 and CANSIM table001-0040.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey numbers survey number3401 and survey number3465.

For more information, contact Statistic's Canada National Contact Centre (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 613-951-8116;

To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Yves Gilbert (613-951-2577;, Heather Keehn (613-951-0730;, or Caroline Quintal (613-951-1106;, Agriculture Division.