Wet weather threatens lentils, durum

CNS Canada — Wet weather across the Prairies has put a damper on the region’s crop prospects, according to one weather specialist.

While drying events in coming weeks will limit further quality declines, it’s not expected to do so as much as some producers would like.

“It’s really quite wet in some locations, and it’s quite a threat to the quality of the crop,” said Drew Lerner, senior ag meteorologist at World Weather Inc.

“Most of these guys out there want to be absolutely dry at this point onward, and I’m not sure we can muster up that kind of a wish.”

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Durum and lentil crops are among those most at risk.

The quality of maturing lentils is steadily declining, Lerner said, adding that dry weather at this point is important to protect crops.

Durum could also be affected by excess moisture, Lerner said, and any additional rain could reduce crops to feed quality.

Growing conditions will see improvement near-term, but there is a high chance of increased rain at the end of the month.

“But I think we’ll see a lot less precipitation a lot less frequently,” Lerner said.

Temperatures will be on the mild side, he said, but not cool enough to stop the drying process.

“We’ll start a slow process that will get us toward improving conditions. It’s going to be imperative that these improved conditions prevail for an extended period of time,” he said.

“But for right now I don’t have high confidence that it’s going to be lasting for an extended period.”

Some of the areas most affected by moisture are in west-central and central Saskatchewan and south-central Alberta, Lerner said.

— Jade Markus writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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