Alberta Crop Report - September 23, 2010

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 This information has been made available by Agriculture Financial Services Corporation.

The September 23, 2010 Crop Report is also available as a PDF file on the AFSC website.

Prepared by:
James Wright
Business Risk Management Division
Actuarial & Program Readiness
AFSC, Lacombe
Telephone: (403)782-8336

Cold, damp weather prevailed throughout the province bringing harvest operations to a virtual stand still. Several hard killing frosts in the -4 to -9 Celsius range were experienced across much of the province which may have caused significant quality damage in some localized areas due to the late maturity. Harvest is estimated to be 13% completed, up from 8% on September 9. A further 30% has been swathed, up from 20% in the last report. At this time in 2009, harvest was estimated to be 80% completed and in the bin. The Peace River region is the most advanced at 57% completed. When the Peace is removed, only 8% of the remainder of the province has been harvested to date. It is expected that more acres will be swathed this year as compared to straight cut as producers attempt to hasten dry down due to greater concentrations of green material.

Harvest Progress (as of September 23, 2010)

Much of the 2nd cut dryland hay crop remains unharvested due to the ongoing wet conditions. Sub soil moisture ratings have improved slightly to 18% poor/ 15% fair/ 36% good/ 30% excellent/ 1% excessive with the good/excellent total up 4% from September 9.

South Region
11% of the crops have been harvested, up from 9% on September 9. A further 18% have been swathed. A killing frost on September 18 of -2 to -3 Celsius affected northern and western areas of the region. Due to the lateness of the crops, the effect could be significant especially to quality. Yield expectations are unchanged at above long term average yields.

Sub soil moisture levels have improved to 0% poor/ 6% fair/ 46% good/ 45% excellent/ 2% excessive representing a 2% increase in the good/excellent category.

Central Region
Approximately 5% of the region has been harvested to date, up from 4% on September 9. A further 30% has been swathed. A killing frost on September 17 of -4 to -7 Celsius covered the entire region. The western portion had experienced several light frosts prior to these heavy killing incidents. Yield expectations have declined from last report but remain above long term average yields.

Sub soil moisture ratings have improved significantly to 0% poor/ 9% fair/ 48% good/ 42% excellent/ 1% excessive with a 13% move from the good to the excellent category since last report.

North East Region
Harvest is progressing slowly with 6% of the region combined, up from 3% on the last report, and a further 42% is swathed. Heavy killing frosts were reported on September 16 and 17. Yield expectations have declined slightly since last report but remain above long term historical averages.

Sub soil moisture ratings show a significant improvement since last report with a 35% movement from the good category to excellent. Current ratings are 5% poor/ 9% fair/ 39% good/ 45% excellent/ 2% excessive.

North West Region
Harvest is estimated at 8% combined, up from 4% on last report, with a further 33% swathed. Yield expectations remain unchanged at above historical long term averages.

Sub soil moisture ratings have improved significantly to 19% poor/ 31% fair/ 34% good/ 16% excellent. The area rated good/excellent improved to 50% from 35% on September 9.

Peace River Region
Despite cool, damp conditions, good harvest progress was made across the Peace River district as producers are much better prepared to harvest under difficult conditions. Much of the grain is being taken off tough and being dried. Harvest is estimated at 57% combined, up from 27% on September 9, with a further 25% in the swath. Current yield estimates remain 25 – 30% below long term historical averages due to the drought conditions experienced across much of the region this summer.

Sub soil moisture ratings showed a slight improvement with a 3% move from the poor to the fair category as good and excellent percentages were unchanged. Sub soil moisture is currently rated 73% poor/ 17% fair/ 9% good/ 1% excellent.

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This information published to the web on September 28, 2010.