Pulse weekly outlook: Lentils stable after recent price increases

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MarketsFarm — Prices for red and green lentils have stabilized after they increased, according to Marcos Mosnaim of Globeways Canada in Mississauga.

Red lentil prices began to rise about two to three weeks ago, he said, as shipments were made to India with the exporter increasing the price.

“I would love to see a firm demand. The demand is not big. It’s more of a spot demand. So the same way prices went up, they may come down, once that demand is filled,” he said.

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Also, he noted there have been cheaper prices in the Black Sea region, which could affect prices in Canada. He said it’s best to see what happens over the next little while.

Presently, red lentils were 19 cents/lb. with large green lentils at 21 cents/lb., he quoted.

India has been moving the market when it comes to green lentils, Mosnaim said. Whenever the price of pigeon peas has increased too much, the Indian market has switched to less expensive green lentils.

Traders expect green lentil prices to increase further, he said, as farmer selling in Canada has been moderate at best.

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) having won a majority in India’s recent federal election, Mosnaim said it’s currently too early to say if the BJP will lower or remove import duties on pulse imports.

The BJP on Thursday scored 303 of the 545 seats in the Lok Sabha, India’s equivalent of Canada’s House of Commons. Along with the BJP’s partners in the National Democratic Alliance, Modi controls 365 seats.

Well prior to the election, the BJP imposed the duties as it gave the party the support of farmers and rural voters, who make up about half of the India’s electorate.

“The Modi government is much stronger now,” Mosnaim said.

— Glen Hallick writes for MarketsFarm, a Glacier FarmMedia division specializing in grain and commodity market analysis and reporting.

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Glen Hallick writes for MarketsFarm specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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