Pulse weekly outlook: Peas, lentils see some strength

Lentil trade watching India

MarketsFarm — Canadian pea and lentil markets have shown some post-harvest strength in recent weeks, with good offshore demand providing support.

“On the yellow pea side, it’s China, and on lentils, it’s basically India,” Marcos Mosnaim, of Globeways Canada, said of the strength in both markets.

Yellow peas are currently trading as high as $7.50 per bushel, while large green lentils are in the 30-34 cents/lb. area, according to Prairie Ag Hotwire data.

Mosnaim was uncertain if the strength would be sustainable, but said there could be more improvement if farmers are able to hold off on sales.

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“It will depend on what India does,” Mosnaim said. The major pulse-buying country has temporarily lowered tariffs on any lentils arriving from destinations other than the U.S. before Oct. 31, but anything Canada ships now would not meet that deadline.

The size of India’s own crop also remains to be seen.

“If India does not come to the market, there are a lot of lentils out there,” Mosnaim said, pointing out that Canadian supplies would be large without that demand. On the other side, “if India does come to the market, there aren’t a lot of lentils out there.”

In addition to the Chinese demand for peas, increased demand from the pet food market has also underpinned pea prices, said Mosnaim.

— Phil Franz-Warkentin reports for MarketsFarm from Winnipeg.

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