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Production and Marketing

Saskatchewan's total acreage devoted to chickpea production has ranged from 153,780 ha (380,000 acres) in 2007 to over 64,749 ha (160,000 acres) in 2016.

Production area peaked at over 400,000 ha (1.1 million acres) in Saskatchewan in 2001, but has subsequently declined in the face of lower world prices and the high production risk caused by plant disease and chickpea’s long growing season requirement.

World chickpea production and exports

World chickpea production has ranged from 13.3M ha - 13.98M from 2011 to 2014. Chickpea production ranged from 11.7Mt to 13.7Mt from 2011 to 2014.

Total world exports have ranged from 1.9Mt - 1.6Mt in 2012-2013.

The major chickpea-exporting countries are Turkey, Canada, Australia, Myanmar (Burma) and Mexico. Canadian chickpea exports have ranged from  46,859-53,816 tonnes in the period from 2012-2013.

Market Opportunities

The major chickpea-importing countries are:

  • India
  • Bangladesh
  • Spain
  • Pakistan
  • Algeria

Countries importing premium quality kabuli chickpea include:

  • Iran
  • Italy
  • Libya
  • Lebanon
  • the U.S.
  • Spain
  • Italy 

Countries importing both kabuli and desi types include:

  • India
  • Bangladesh
  • Pakistan

India and Pakistan are responsible for over half of world imports and import large volumes of mainly desi chickpea if their domestic crop is small. Due to their close proximity, Myanmar (Burma) and Australia have a marketing advantage over Canada in the Indian subcontinent.

Significant opportunities exist for Canada in the American, European and Mediterranean chickpea markets.


For list of special crop marketing companies, please see the Special Crop Marketing Company Listing.

Economics of Production

The Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food publication, Crop Planning Guide – Specialty Crops, contains information on projected costs of production and expected returns on desi and kabuli chickpea in Saskatchewan.

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