Wheat School: Figuring Out the Market for Protein

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Protein premiums or discounts can be a major factor in marketing wheat. In some years there’s plenty of high protein wheat (as looks to be the case for 2015-16) and in other years millers are left scrounging for wheat with high enough protein.

We asked earlier this week whether yield or protein is a higher priority when growing wheat. Have you switched to growing new varieties introduced in the last few years that have higher yield potential, but generally lower protein levels? Or do you choose to grow varieties that consistently have good protein?

2010_07_20_wheat_tallIn this Wheat School episode, Bruce Burnett, weather and crop analyst with CWB (becoming G3 Canada) Market Research, fills us in on how the protein market is shaping up for 2015-16.

“There’s been a very good crop in the U.S. Most of it has graded out very well. It’s about half a percent higher protein than what they had last year, which puts it back into that normal range,” he explains.

At the same time, the drought in parts of Western Canada has resulted in abnormally high protein levels this fall.

“The protein market is mostly a North American market, so when you have a high protein crop in Canada and a high protein crop in the United States, it really pushes those premiums into a narrow spread. That’s what’s going to happen this year,” says Burnett.

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As of October 2nd, the Alberta Wheat Commission’s PDQ website was reporting a premium of only 6 cents per bushel for No. 1 CWRS 14 percent protein wheat versus the base 13.5 percent protein.

Poll: Yield or Protein? What’s Your Priority When Growing Wheat?

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