Quality of western Canadian canola 2013

Fatty acid composition

The average level of erucic acid in the 2013 crop was 0.01%, which is identical to what was observed for the last 3 years (0.01%) and to the five-year average of 0.01% (Tables 1, 5, 7, 8, and 9, Figure 12). Similar to total glucosinolate content, these low values are a direct result of breeding efforts of the Canadian canola industry.

For Canola, No. 1 Canada samples, the mean α-linolenic acid (C18:3) was 9.1% lower that the mean observed in 2012 (9.6%) and the five year average (9.7%) (Table 1, Figure 13). The α-linolenic acid mean in Manitoba (9.4%) was similar the α-linolenic acid mean observed in Alberta (9.3%), whereas the Saskatchewan mean (8.9%) was the lowest (Table 5, 7, 8 and 9). Hot conditions observed in the prairies in late August and in September were responsible for the decrease in α-linolenic acid content observed in 2013. The level of unsaturation, e.g. α-linolenic acid, is affected by temperature; high temperatures lead to lower levels of unsaturation (therefore lower α-linolenic acid) in the oil of canola seeds.

For Canola, No. 1 Canada samples, the mean oleic acid (C18:1) content was 63.4%, about 1% higher than what was observed in 2012 (62.5%) (Table 1, Figure 14). The mean is also higher than the five-year mean (62.5%) by 1% (Table 1). On average, oleic acid content was lower in Manitoba (62.8%) than in Alberta (63.3%) and Saskatchewan (63.7%) (Tables 5, 7, 8, and 9). These results are somewhat unusual; in previous years, Manitoba was the province with the highest oleic acid content.

The linoleic acid (C18:2) average was lower than the 2012 average (18.5 versus 19.2%) for Canola, No. 1 Canada samples (Table 1).

Fatty acid composition (oleic acid, linoleic acid and α-linolenic acid) was very different when compared to 2012 results and led to very different iodine value averages. Iodine value was much lower than the 2012 observed iodine value (111.7 units in 2013 versus 113.3 units in 2012) (Table 1, Figure 15). For Canola, No. 1 Canada, the lowest iodine value average was found in Saskatchewan (111.3 units), whereas Manitoba and Alberta had similar iodine value, 112.5 and 112.1 units, respectively (Table 5). Samples that graded Canola, No. 2 Canada showed higher iodine value averages, with higher linoleic and α-linolenic acid content (Table 5).

The mean level of saturated fatty acids was 6.8% (Table 1). The overall average was slightly higher than 2012 average (6.6%) and similar to what was observed in 2009, 2010 and 2011 (6.8 - 6.9%) (Table 1, Figure 16). Mean saturated fatty acid levels were similar for the 3 provinces, (6.8, 6.9 and 6.7% for Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, respectively). However, crop district averages showed very different results, with some areas averaging levels very close to 7.0% and as high as 7.3% (Tables 7, 8 and 9). Total saturated fatty acids are usually affected by temperature.High temperatures lead to higher oil saturation. It is usually expected that total saturated fatty acid content varies among the 3 provinces, the southern part of the prairies having significantly higher temperatures than northern regions. It seems that this year, there was a relationship between the increase of saturate levels and the decrease of α-linolenic acid levels.

For the first 2 of months of the 2013-14 shipping season, α-linolenic acid averages for clean and not commercially clean samples were 9.3 to 9.1%, respectively (Table 6). This is lower than what was observed during last shipping season (9.7%). When compared to last year’s average, iodine value averages were lower this year (111.6 to 111.8 units) until November 2013 than what was observed last year (113.4 units). The level of saturated fatty acids in the November 2013 canola exports remained very similar to the 2012-13 means (6.8% versus 6.6%). It is expected that levels of erucic acid will remain very low for the new shipping season (below 0.1%) since erucic acid content was very low in the 2013 harvest survey.

Table 5 - Fatty acid composition – 2013 Harvest survey
Canola quality data by grade and province
  Relative fatty acid composition of the oil (%) Total saturatesFootnote 3 (%) Iodine valueFootnote 4 (Units)
C18:0 C18:1 C18:2 C18:3 C22:1
Canola, No. 1 Canada
Manitoba 1.8 62.8 18.8 9.4 0.02 6.8 112.5
Saskatchewan 1.9 63.7 18.5 8.9 0.01 6.9 111.3
AlbertaFootnote 1 1.7 63.3 18.5 9.3 0.02 6.7 112.1
Western CanadaFootnote 2 1.8 63.4 18.5 9.1 0.01 6.8 111.7
Canola, No. 2 Canada
Manitoba 1.8 62.2 19.0 9.7 0.00 6.9 113.8
Saskatchewan 1.9 62.9 18.9 9.2 0.00 6.9 112.2
AlbertaFootnote 1 1.7 61.9 19.2 9.6 0.00 6.9 113.2
Western CanadaFootnote 2 1.8 62.3 19.2 9.6 0.00 6.9 113.1
Canola, No. 3 Canada
Western CanadaFootnote 2 1.8 62.2 19.2 9.4 0.06 6.9 112.8
Canola, Sample Canada
Western CanadaFootnote 2 1.9 63.5 18.2 9.1 0.04 6.9 111.4

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Includes part of the Peace River area that is in British Columbia.

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Footnote 2

Values are weighted averages based on production by province as estimated by Statistics Canada.

Return to first footnote 2 referrer

Footnote 3

Total saturated fatty acids are the sum of palmitic (C16:0), stearic (C18:0), arachidic (C20:0), behenic (C22:0), and lignoceric (C24:0).

Return to footnote 3 referrer

Footnote 4

Calculated from fatty acid composition.

Return to footnote 4 referrer

Figure 12 - Erucic acid content of harvest survey samples, 1975-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Graph of canola erucic acid content from samples 1975-2013. Details in table below.
Table: Erucic acid content of harvest survey samples, 1975-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Year Erucic acid content of the oil %
1975 3.10
1976 2.30
1977 1.60
1978 1.30
1979 1.30
1980 1.10
1981 1.00
1982 1.20
1983 0.80
1984 0.60
1985 0.70
1986 0.50
1987 0.70
1988 0.60
1989 0.60
1990 0.60
1991 0.50
1992 0.50
1993 0.50
1994 0.50
1995 0.30
1996 0.40
1997 0.30
1998 0.30
1999 0.20
2000 0.15
2001 0.11
2002 0.11
2003 0.13
2004 0.12
2005 0.06
2006 0.05
2007 0.04
2008 0.01
2009 0.01
2010 0.03
2011 0.01
2012 0.01
2013 0.01
Figure 13 - α-Linolenic acid content of harvest survey samples, 1974-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Graph of canola α-Linolenic acid content from samples 1974-2013. Details in table below.
Table: α-Linolenic acid content of harvest survey samples, 1974-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Year α-Linolenic acid content of the oil %
1994 10.6
1995 11.0
1996 10.4
1997 9.7
1998 8.5
1999 9.8
2000 9.9
2001 9.4
2002 10.6
2003 8.4
2004 11.2
2005 11.0
2006 9.9
2007 9.8
2008 9.1
2009 9.8
2010 10.4
2011 9.9
2012 9.6
2013 9.1
Figure 14 - Oleic acid content of harvest survey samples, 1994-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Graph of canola oleic acid content from samples 1994-2013. Details in table below.
Table: Oleic acid content of harvest survey samples, 1994-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Year Oleic acid content of the oil %
1994 59.3
1995 59.1
1996 60.3
1997 61.0
1998 62.3
1999 60.9
2000 61.5
2001 61.9
2002 60.6
2003 63.2
2004 58.9
2005 59.8
2006 62.0
2007 61.5
2008 63.2
2009 62.2
2010 62.3
2011 62.1
2012 62.5
2013 63.4
Figure 15 - Iodine value of harvest survey samples, 1980-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Graph of canola iodine value from samples 1980-2013. Details in table below.
Table: Iodine value of harvest survey samples, 1980-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Year Iodine value of the oil (Units)
1980 120.0
1981 117.0
1982 118.0
1983 116.0
1984 113.0
1985 117.0
1986 116.0
1987 115.0
1988 118.0
1989 115.0
1990 117.0
1991 115.0
1992 118.0
1993 119.0
1994 117.0
1995 117.0
1996 115.0
1997 113.0
1998 111.0
1999 113.0
2000 114.0
2001 112.4
2002 114.7
2003 110.1
2004 117.0
2005 116.0
2006 113.4
2007 113.3
2008 111.5
2009 114.0
2010 115.0
2011 113.6
2012 113.3
2013 111.8
Figure 16 - Total saturated fatty acidcontent of harvest survey samples, 1994-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Graph of canola total saturated fatty acid content from samples 1994-2013. Details in table below.
Table: Total saturated fatty acid content of harvest survey samples, 1994-2013 - Canola, No. 1 Canada
Year Total saturated fat content of the oil %
1994 6.6
1995 6.7
1996 6.8
1997 7.0
1998 7.4
1999 7.2
2000 7.1
2001 7.2
2002 7.0
2003 7.3
2004 7.0
2005 7.0
2006 7.0
2007 7.0
2008 7.1
2009 6.8
2010 6.9
2011 6.8
2012 6.6
2013 6.8