The federal government’s 2% biodiesel mandate would require about 1 million tonnes of canola seed annually. Historically, food demand has left us with enough carryover (ending stocks) of canola seed to fill this biofuel demand. Some of the carryover is lower quality, non-food grade canola that is difficult to sell.
That means we can easily fill the biodiesel demand without diverting canola from food use. When more biodiesel feedstock is needed, it can be provided in the form of other vegetable oils, animal fats and recycled restaurant grease.
By 2015, our annual canola production will grow by another 1 million tonnes. Our farmers continue to harvest bigger yields as new varieties increase the productivity of land already in production. Average per-acre canola yields have risen 50% in 15 years, and Canada is on track to produce 15 million tonnes of canola a year by 2015.