Canola School: Renewable diesel demand, Indo-Pacific exports, and flea beetle controls


It’s a good time to be in the canola business, as vegetable oil demand is up, and the world wants Canadian canola.

So says Jim Everson, president of the Canola Council of Canada, who gave a state of the industry address at Canola Week in Saskatoon, Sask. this week.

There’s plenty to be optimistic about with canola right now, especially from a crush perspective, as the U.S. Environmental Protectional Agency issued its final rule approving canola oil for use in advanced biofuels last week.

“That’s a big decision. And it’s going to create a lot of value for our industry and for canola growers in Canada, a big, big opportunity there [with] some major investment both in Canada, and the United States in renewable fuels manufacturing, including some of the big, big oil companies like Chevron and BP who are investing there. So some new players with a lot of investment in the line,” Everson says, in this Canola School episode.

Renewable diesel is the compelling market driver, as this diesel-equivalent delivers the same power with 60 to 70 per cent fewer emissions. Not just a U.S. market, Canada’s Clean Fuel regulations will likely support canola demand, as well, he says.

Growing canola isn’t without its challenges, though. All that crush produces meal that needs to find a buyer, which right now isn’t necessarily figured out. Plus, there are labeling issues with crop protection products causing real concern for those fighting flea beetle pressure.

Everson says the Canola Council is urging the Pest Management Regulatory Agency to make decisions using the best available science. “We can’t meet market demand out there unless we’re able to reliably grow the product. And these crop production tools have to be safe, have to be regulated… but we really have to use all the science available and make sure that we’re making the best science based decision for growers.”

For more on canola demand, the Indo-Pacific strategy, and product access for 2023, watch below:

Related: Canada needs to think bigger on its Indo-Pacific strategy

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