Canola Quick Bytes

A supplement to U.S. Canola Digest

Capitol Hill

The 114th Congress came to an end on Dec. 10 after the Senate approved by a 78-21 vote the Water Infrastructure Improvements Act for the Nation (WIIN), previously known as the Water Resource Development Act. Hours earlier, the Senate avoided a government shutdown set to begin at midnight when it passed with a 63-36 vote another fiscal year 2017 Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund federal government operations at FY 2016 levels through April 28, 2017. The House passed the CR the previous day by a 326-96 vote and WIIN/WRDA by a vote of 360-61.

The WIIN authorizes the modernization of locks, damn and ports critical to agricultural trade, but is controversial because of language authorizing the water reallocations to address the ongoing drought in California. Annual appropriations will still need to be approved to fund the infrastructure work.


Whether you’re a canola grower, crop insurance agent or a canola service or product provider, you’ll want to consider attending Canola College in Enid, Okla., this month. “It’s a great opportunity to learn from and speak with leading experts in the field, and interact with more than 250 new or veteran canola producers and industry members,” Ron Sholar, Great Plains Canola Association executive director, told Today’s Producer. “This will be the premier canola education and training event in the region for 2017.” The Jan. 19 event is free, but advanced registration is encouraged online at


A study conducted by Mayo Clinic showed that following the Mediterranean Diet could help reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s by 34 to 48 percent. That’s because foods high in antioxidants have been demonstrated to boost memory, while processed foods have been shown to do the opposite. The Mediterranean Diet centers around eating plant-based foods, limiting red meat consumption while increasing fish and poultry intake, and replacing butter with healthy fats like canola oil.

Get ready for the week ahead with a seven-day meal planner, including multiple healthy and tasty recipes prepared with canola oil that your whole family is sure to love. There’s flashy fish tacos for the kids, Asian vegetables and noodles with peanut sauce for the more refined palate, and sage and wild mushroom pork chops to impress your guests.

Other Country News

The Canadian government announced it will begin consulting next year to develop a clean fuel standard to reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions. It’s good news for the environment, as it would ideally reduce emissions to a point that is equivalent to removing 7 million vehicles from the road for a year. But it’s also good for the canola industry since the standard would encourage the use of lower carbon fuels and alternatives like canola biodiesel. Cheryl Mayer, director of policy development with the Canadian Canola Growers Association, estimates that a carbon intensity standard would boost demand to nearly 5 million tons of canola for biodiesel production; last year, just under 2 million tons were used.

A farmer in Saskatchewan lost 1,600 bushels of canola last month after a fire nearly destroyed one of his canola bins. After firefighters were alerted, they worked for nearly six hours to control the flames. But Jim Shirley, the farmer, estimates that his loss still reached about $20,000. The cause of the fire is still unknown, though he told CBC he assumes it came from a fan bearing that threw sparks into the bin.

Latest Industry News

Registration is now open for oilseed workshops in late January and early February, hosted by Washington State University and its Washington Oilseed Cropping Systems. Each workshop in Hartline, Ritzville and Clarkston will include presentations and strategies designed to help farmers get the most out of adding an oilseed crop to their crop rotations. The cost to attend is just $20 and includes lunch, refreshments and an end-of-day social with others in the industry.

About the USCA

The USCA’s annual membership and board of directors meeting will be Feb. 27 to March 1, 2017 at the Hotel George in Washington, D.C. The meeting registration fee is $200. A block of rooms for the nights of Feb. 26-28 has been held through Friday, Jan. 27 at a rate of $249 per night. Book online below or call 1-800-546-7866 and identify yourself with the group U.S. Canola Association 2017 to lock in this rate.

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