Quality of western Canadian mustard 2013

Weather and production review

Weather review

The 2013 growing season was a good year for mustard quality and production. In the spring, there were initial concerns during seeding time because of a delayed snow melt and cool, wet conditions. Although seeding started in some places in early May it was not completed until mid-June. In spite of late seeding, near favourable weather conditions during the rest of the summer allowed the crop in Alberta and Saskatchewan to mature without undue stress. Warm and dry conditions from mid-August until September allowed the crop to be harvested in good condition. By the middle of September, three-quarters of the mustard crop in Saskatchewan was harvested, and by the first week in October the harvest was essentially completed (Saskatchewan Crop Reports).

Temperature and precipitation patterns for the 2013 western Canadian growing season can be found on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada web site.

Production and grade information

As shown in Table 1, mustard seed production increased by approximately 30% from 2012 to 154.5 thousand metric tonnes. The increase was a result in more hectares seeded and higher yields per hectare. Yield was approximately 1,045 kilograms per hectare (Statistics Canada), which is higher than last year’s yield of 880 kilograms per hectare and above the 10-year average of 896 kilograms per hectare.

About 44% of production in Saskatchewan was estimated to be yellow mustard, followed by 41% brown and 15% oriental mustard, according to Saskatchewan’s 2013 Specialty Crop Report. Saskatchewan accounted for 74% of western Canada’s total seeded area and nearly 76% of mustard production, while Alberta accounted for most of the remaining seeded area and production (Table 1).

Seventy percent of samples from the harvest survey graded No. 1, in contrast to 62% in 2012 and 72%, the 10-year mean (2003-12). Growing and harvest conditions throughout the prairies produced a mustard crop with only some visible damage. Conspicuous admixtures from weed seeds and foreign material were the major factors that lowered the grades of samples from the harvest survey.

Table 1 – Seeded area and production for western Canadian mustardFootnote 1
Region Seeded area 2013Footnote 2 Seeded area 2012Footnote 2 Production 2013Footnote 3 Production 2012Footnote 3 Mean production 2003-12Footnote 3
Manitoba n/a n/a n/a n/a 1.3
Saskatchewan 109.3 97.1 117.3 82.7 134.5
Alberta 38.5 38.4 37.2 35.9 37.2
Western Canada 147.8 133.5 154.5 118.6 173.0


Footnote 1

Statistics Canada. Table 001-0010 - Estimated areas, yield, production and average farm price of principal field crops, in metric units.

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Footnote 2

Seed area in thousand hectares.

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Footnote 3

Production in thousand tonnes.

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