Trade Resources Industry Views Saskcanola Is Planning a Multi-Year Research Project on Straight Cutting Canola

Saskcanola Is Planning a Multi-Year Research Project on Straight Cutting Canola

By Neil Billinger

SaskCanola is planning a multi-year research project on straight cutting canola and is looking for input from growers.

The group says the majority of farmers still swath and combine their canola because they are concerned about potential shattering losses and feel comfortable with the traditional harvesting method. However, a growing number are interested in making the switch because of the potential cost and time savings.

"We want to figure out what is missing in the knowledge base -- what producers want to find out," says Franck Groeneweg, SaskCanola chair. "So we can design a project that can make the most efficient use of their levy dollars."

Groeneweg has straight cut canola on his farm for five years and says it spreads out the workload during the busy harvest season.

"At swathing, we have a lot of other things competing for time," Groeneweg says. "Things like combining peas and desiccating other crops."

SaskCanola recently hosted a producer forum where growers were able to ask questions and exchange ideas.

Dennis Reimer farms near Hudson Bay in the extreme northeast corner of the grain belt. He has been straight cutting canola for 12 years using draper headers and no crop desiccation.

"Our experience has been that if we can finish the cereals, that's about when the canola is ready to harvest," Reimer says.

He says testing on his farm has shown yield advantages ranging from one to three bushels per acre. Quality has been very good as well.

"If you have two samples side by side, you will always be able to pick out the one that was straight combined. It's blacker, the seeds are bigger and green seed has never been an issue," he says.

Additional discussions with growers will be held during SaskCanola regional meetings in March. The group plans to run tests at multiple locations with the possibility of observing farmers who are already straight cutting canola.

The project is one of 46 to receive funding through Growing Forward 2 and Saskatchewan’s Agriculture Development Fund.

Source: FCC

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