Australian rapeseed exports are making a strong start to
2013-14 thanks to the logistical hiccups in Canada, the top shipper of the
oilseed, whose trade is being curtailed by logistical problems.
While Canada has prioritised canola and wheat among its crop
exports – after record harvests of both - shipments have still fallen thanks to
the inability of its rail and port systems, choked by strong oil volumes and hampered
by cold weather, to cope.
Canada's exports of canola, the rapeseed variant, have dropped
19% to 3.2m tonnes so far in 2013-14, starting in August, according to the
International Grains Council.
"In Canada, some growers are now finding it almost
impossible to sell their seed because the local silos are full and the rail
system simply does not have the capacity to get record crops of both wheat and
rapeseed to the ports fast enough," traders at a major European commodities
"Some vessels are having to queue in Vancouver for 30 days
or more to get loaded."
Australia vs Canada
Strategie Grains said: "Canadian logistical difficulties
continue to dominate the rapeseed market, with very low exports in the first
part of the campaign."
This squeeze "benefits exports from Australia, whose
loadings are currently very high", the Paris-based analysis group added.
Agrimoney.com has heard talk of substantial volumes of
Australian rapeseed coming into Europe, one of the world's biggest importers,
but has been unable to verify this speculation.
In fact, Strategie Grains also raised its forecast for
European Union rapeseed imports in 2013-14, by 300,000 tonnes to 3.3m tonnes,
reflecting an increased consumption forecast.
German-based consultancy Oil World has pegged world rapeseed
exports in the July-to-December period at 7.5m tonnes, up 1.2m tonnes year on
year, as rising exports from the likes of Australia and Ukraine offset the drop
in Canadian volumes.
The International Grains Council last week nudged higher by
100,000 tonnes to 2.7m tonnes its forecast for Australian rapeseed exports in
2013-14, albeit representing an 800,000-tonne fall on last season thanks to a
More on Canada's canola supply situation will be revealed on
Tuesday when Statistics Canada unveils inventory data as of the end of 2013.
The data "should be on high levels, probably above 12m
tonnes, against 8.1m tonnes" a year ago, consultancy Agritel said.
Oil World last week raised by 200,000 tonnes to 3.0m tonnes
its forecast for Canadian rapeseed inventories as of the close of 2013-14,
above the 2.5m tonnes that the US Department of Agriculture is factoring in, if
a figure in line with that from Canada's own farm ministry.
As for 2014-15, Strategie Grains forecast a 1m-tonne fall to 67m tonnes in world production, with a particularly sharp drop in Canadian output, which was swollen last year by a record yield.
Canada's farm ministry has forecast a 16.0m-tonne harvest, down 2.0m tonnes year on year.
For the European Union, the top producer, Strategie Grains forecast a 21.4m-tonne harvest, a figure upgraded by 100,000 tonnes from last month, and up 500,000 tonnes year on year.