Alberta 2013 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results

 
 
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Purpose of survey | 2013 production


Alberta 2013 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results



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 2013 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 2013 Greenfeed and Silage Production

Crop growing conditions in the province during 2013 were very favorable. Producers started seeding later than normal given a wet, cool spring, but the remainder of the season was warm with frequent precipitation. These conditions provided producers with the opportunity for a record harvest, with above average crop quality and yields. Provincial average yields were from 10 per cent to 30 per cent above their respective 10-year averages.

Total tame hay production in Alberta in 2013 was estimated at 7.59 million tonnes, based on the Statistics Canada report “Production of Principal Field Crops, November, 2013”. This was down 1.6 per cent from 2012, and 1.9 per cent below the 10-year average. The lower production was a result of a smaller harvested area (4.5 million acres), despite the high yields (1.9 tons per acre).


In 2013, Alberta producers seeded an estimated 18.4 million acres of spring wheat, durum, barley, oats, mixed grains, triticale, canola and dry peas (see Table 1). Of this 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 higher than in 2012. Producers seeded less greenfeed and silage crops compared to oilseed crops in 2013, despite feed crop prices for wheat, barley, and oats increasing from 2012. Oilseed prices also rose to a near record high, making them a more popular crop choice.

Total area harvested for greenfeed and silage in 2013 was estimated at 795,000 acres, up 12 per cent from 2012 (Figure 1). Total area harvested for greenfeed increased eight per cent from 2012, to 331,000 acres, while silage acreage rose by 16 per cent to 464,000 acres.


Source: Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development

Producers reported higher yields for greenfeed and silage than expected, due to less crop damage from pest infestations than previous years, and favorable growing conditions (warm growing season with frequent precipitation). The estimated provincial average yield for greenfeed was 4.38 tonnes per acre. This was 70 per cent higher than in 2012. The provincial average yield for greenfeed barley was 4.47 tonnes per acre (up 79 per cent from 2012), and 4.43 tonnes per acre for greenfeed oats (58 per cent increase from 2012). For silage, the estimated provincial average yield was 7.27 tonnes per acre, up 18 per cent from 2012. The increase in average silage yield was due to increased yields in all silage crops. Mixed grain silage was up 10 per cent to 6.95 tonnes per acre, and oat silage increased 29 per cent to 7.58 tonnes per acre. The yield for triticale silage rose 21 per cent to 7.25 tonnes per acre. Barley silage yield was up 21 per cent to 7.27 tonnes per acre.

Due to increased yields, total greenfeed production jumped to 1.4 million tonnes, up 83 per cent from 2012. The production for greenfeed barley was 603,000 tonnes, (120 per cent above 2012) and 695,000 tonnes for greenfeed oats (up 71 per cent from 2012). For silage, total production was estimated at 3.4 million tonnes, up 37 per cent from 2012 due to higher yields and harvested area. The production for barley silage was 2.7 million tonnes, 53 per cent higher than in 2012. Oats for silage production was estimated as 364,000 tonnes, an 18 per cent decrease from 2012.

In 2013, barley and oats were the major crops harvested for greenfeed and silage, although many acres of mixed grains and some spring wheat and triticale were also taken off. For harvested greenfeed area, oats accounted for 47 per cent of the provincial total, while barley represented 41 per cent. Mixed grains accounted for eight per cent and spring wheat accounted for three per cent, while the remaining one per cent was from triticale. In terms of harvested silage area, 79 per cent of the provincial total was barley, 10 per cent came from oats, eight per cent from mixed grains and two per cent from spring wheat. Triticale represented less than one per cent of total harvested silage area.

Estimates of greenfeed and silage production in Alberta for previous years, dating back to 2004, 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 - Current Document
Alberta 2012 Greenfeed and Silage Production Survey Results
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 August 6, 2015.