Mid-Columbia farmers looking to cash in on "golden opportunity" - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Mid-Columbia farmers looking to cash in on "golden opportunity"

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KENNEWICK, Wash. -More farmers in the Mid-Columbia may plant canola this spring.

Growers attending the Washington State University Oilseed Production and Marketing Conference are learning there is a worldwide shortage of canola and other vegetable oils because growing Asian countries are consuming more of it.

"People's incomes have risen and they're doing stir frying and eating meat instead of rice," says Dennis Roe with the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences at WSU Pullman. "Plus there's an interest in using vegetable oil for bio fuel."

Roe says Washington state farmers will grow 30,000 acres of canola this year, double what growers harvested last year.

The price of canola has nearly tripled in the past five years, from eight to ten cents to 25 to 30 cents per pound.

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