Alberta 2012 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results

 
 
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Purpose of survey | 2012 production
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Purpose of Survey

Greenfeed and silage production statistics for Alberta are not available from Statistics Canada or any other source, despite the fact that producers in the province harvest significant acreages of annual crops for greenfeed and silage every year. To fill this data gap and to meet client needs, the Statistics and Data Development Branch of Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development (ARD) initiated a greenfeed and silage production survey in 2002. Since then, the survey has been conducted annually, to develop selected statistics for the forage industry.

As in previous years, the 2012 survey was conducted in partnership with Agricultural Fieldmen and Agriculture Financial Services Corporation. The survey collected data on greenfeed and silage acreage, yields and production at the municipal level. The information was then used, along with input from ARD specialists, to develop provincial estimates. Just to note, the yield and production estimates in this report are on a wet weight basis.

Alberta 2012 Greenfeed and Silage Production

Overall, crop growing conditions in the province in 2012 were mainly favourable. Producers were off to a slow start across the province given a wet cool May, but the reminder of the season was hot and dry with occasional precipitation. Provincial average yields for major crops were lower than in 2011, but still above their respective 10-year averages. Also, there was some crop damage due to adverse weather and disease.

Total tame hay production in Alberta in 2012 was estimated at 7.71 million tonnes, based on the Statistics Canada report “Production of Principal Field Crops, November, 2012”. This was down three per cent from 2011, but six per cent above the 10-year average. The lower production was due to a decline in seeded and harvested area (Figure 1). However, provincial average yield was 1.8 tons per acre, 21 per cent above the 10-year average and at par with last year.

In 2012, Alberta producers seeded an estimated total of 18.4 million acres to spring wheat, durum, barley, oats, mixed grains, triticale, canola and dry peas (see Table 1). Of the total seeded area, 96 per cent was harvested as grains and oilseeds and four per cent as greenfeed and silage. The percentage of crop area harvested for grains and oilseeds, greenfeed and silage was lower than in 2011. Producers seeded less greenfeed and silage acres mainly because provincial cattle numbers declined in recent years, and grain and oilseeds prices were near record highs.

Total area harvested for greenfeed and silage in 2012 was estimated at 707,000 acres, down 28 per cent from 2011 (Figure 1). Total area harvested for greenfeed declined 26 per cent from 2011, to 307,000 acres, while silage acreage decreased by 30 per cent to 400,000 acres.


Source: Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development

Producers reported lower yields for greenfeed and silage than originally anticipated, due to diseases, shallow rooted crops and the impact of heat stress in July and August. The estimated provincial average yield for greenfeed was 2.85 tonnes per acre. This was ten per cent lower than in 2011. The provincial average yield for greenfeed barley was 2.75 tonnes per acre (12 per cent down from 2011), and 3.09 tonnes per acre for greenfeed oats (two per cent decrease from 2011). For silage, the provincial average yield was estimated at 6.58 tonnes per acre, down two per cent from 2011. The reduction in silage yield was largely attributed to a decline in oat and mixed grain silage yields, compared to 2011. Mixed grain silage was down 12 per cent to 6.96 tonnes per acre and oat silage decreased 11 per cent to 6.49 tonnes per acre. The yield for triticale silage increased 19 per cent to 6.87 tonnes per acre. Barley silage yields were up three percent to 6.60 tonnes per acre.

As a result of lower yields and harvested area, total greenfeed production declined 39 per cent from 2011, to 793,000 million tonnes. The production for greenfeed barley was 274,000 tonnes, (42 per cent below 2011) and 406,000 tonnes for greenfeed oats (down 39 per cent from 2011). For silage total production was estimated at 2.5 million tonnes, down 36 per cent from 2011, due to generally lower yields and harvested area. The production for barley silage was 1.7 million tonnes, 31 per cent lower than in 2011. Oats for silage production totaled to 442,000 tonnes, 47 per cent decrease from 2011.

In 2012, barley and oats were the major crops harvested for greenfeed and silage, although significant acreage of mixed grains and some spring wheat and triticale were also taken off. For greenfeed production, barley accounted for 35 per cent of the provincial total, while oats represented 51 per cent. Mixed grains and triticale accounted for 11 per cent and two per cent, respectively. The remaining less than one per cent was from spring wheat. In terms of silage production, 70 per cent of the provincial total came from barley, 18 per cent from oats, and eight per cent from mixed grains. Triticale represented four per cent of total silage production.

Estimates of greenfeed and silage production in Alberta for previous years, dating back to 2003, are also shown in Table 1.

For further information on the survey results, please contact:

Lukas Matejovsky, Crop Statistician
Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development
Economics and Competitiveness Division
Statistics and Data Development Branch
Telephone: 780-422-2887
Fax: 780-427-5220
Email: lukas.matejovsky@gov.ab.ca





 
 
 
 

Other Documents in the Series

 
  Alberta Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
Alberta 2016 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
Alberta 2015 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
Alberta 2014 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
Alberta 2013 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
Alberta 2012 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results - Current Document
Alberta 2011 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
Alberta 2010 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
 
 
 
 
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This document is maintained by Samantha Wallbank.
This information published to the web on April 16, 2013.
Last Reviewed/Revised on April 30, 2015.