Pulse weekly outlook: Chickpeas recover from previous lows

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MarketsFarm — Chickpea prices have recovered slightly from lows hit around the end of 2019, but they’re still a long way off historic highs from years past.

Ahead of the 2018 growing season, chickpea prices were around 50 to 60 cents/lb. for growers, according to Darwin Hamilton of Kalshea Commodities in Winnipeg.

Currently, large chickpea prices are around 26 to 28 cents/lb., which is a slight improvement from the 25 cents/lb. observed around Christmastime.

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“We’re not holding out breath to see if prices go back to where they were,” Hamilton said, explaining that the large drop in price was due to high inventories across North America.

However, lowered planted acreage across North America has been a supportive factor for prices. In Canada, planted acreage for the current growing season is projected to be about 35 per cent lower than 2019, totalling just under 255,000 acres.

“It hasn’t affected the price too drastically yet,” he said, noting weather in June and July will play a big role in this year’s crop production.

Hamilton also noted export demand had been steady for all Canadian pulses, including chickpeas, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, pulse exports to India won’t be picking up any time soon, as the country is reporting a record harvest of pulse crops.

“At this moment it doesn’t look like the [Indian] market is going to open up a lot,” he said.

— Marlo Glass reports for MarketsFarm from Winnipeg.

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