Capitol Hill

Agronomy

Nutrition

Oil for the Environment

Latest Industry News

About the USCA

 






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Canola Quick Bytes

A supplement to U.S. Canola Digest


Capitol Hill

The House passed on June 16 its FY 2012 Agriculture Appropriations bill, totaling $17.3 billion in discretionary spending. This includes a reduction of $2.6 billion from the FY 2011 Continuing Resolution and $6 billion from FY 2010 enacted levels. Among the spending reductions was a $354 million cut to agricultural research funding.

The USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service released its June 30 acreage report, which pegged U.S. canola plantings at 1 million acres, a 21% decline from the record 2010 acreage. This confirmed that extremely wet conditions in the Northern Plains this spring reduced acreage significantly from the Mar. 31 Prospective Plantings report. North Dakota saw its acreage fall to 940,000 acres, a drop of 27%. One bright spot was the 67% increase in Oklahoma to 100,000 acres. Although the southern Great Plains struggled with a severe drought this growing season, many in the canola industry were pleased at how well the winter canola crop survived during the adverse weather, and acreage is expected to increase again in 2012.

Agronomy

Dakota Farmer reported on June 5 that North Dakota producers had 51 percent of their planned canola acres (1.42 million) planted compared to 95 percent of their five-year average. Minnesota growers had 79 percent planted compared to 95 percent of their five-year average. Extremely wet conditions in many areas forced growers to delay planting and other field work.

Given the record flooding in the Minot, N.D., area, the Northern Canola Growers Association (NCGA) and North Dakota State University canceled the canola tour scheduled for June 29 at the North Central Research Extension Center (NCREC). However, the NCGA will be hold a canola tour and combine clinic at Langdon on July 7.

Nutrition

The U.S. Department of Agriculture issued a new MyPlate logo in place of the decades-old Food Guide Pyramid in order to describe a healthy diet to Americans in a more straightforward way. The U.S. government is also providing nutritional advice in “bite-size” pieces, beginning with three: 1) balance calories and watch portions, 2) increase vegetables, fruits, whole grains and low-fat or fat-free milk and 3) reduce sodium and sugar.

The benefits of canola oil were touted in the June 2011 issue of Baking & Snack, which featured omega-3, -6 and -9 fats. It noted that canola oil is the second most widely used oil in North America after soy and is an “excellent source” of omega-3 fat. The article also included a dietary fat comparison and referenced canola oil’s FDA qualified health claim and high smoke point of 468 °F.

Oil for the Environment

Wayne County Airport Authority (WCAA) has entered into a partnership with Michigan State University Extension (MSUE) to grow biofuel crops, including canola, on about 1,700 acres of property at Detroit Metro Airport and Willow Run. WCAA executives believe if the project has success, more alternative energy acres could pop up in land surrounding airports. MSUE has already partnered with the Grand Rapids, Mich., airport to grow biofuel crops as well.

Latest Industry News

At the Institute of Food Technologists' Food Expo in June, Cargill launched its new Clear Valley 80 High-Oleic Canola Oil, which offers low saturated fat content, zero grams of trans fat and a long shelf life. The oil offers “superior functionality for processed foods” and “resists oxidation and the development of flavor ‘off’ notes,” according to the company, making it an ideal choice for snacks and baked products.

About the USCA

The deadline for U.S. Canola Digest’s annual “Lights, Camera, Canola!” contest is approaching quickly. Test your amateur photography skills and submit your best shot – close-up, panoramic, aerial, whatever you’ve got – by Aug. 1. For more information, official contest rules and to see an image gallery of previous winners, visit the U.S. Canola Association website.

 

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