Australia to soar to production records


IN ITS final crop estimate for the year the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) has flagged a record Australian winter crop.

The national forecaster has flagged a whopping 32 per cent year-on-year increase in winter crop production in its Australian Crop Report, with its upwardly revised number sitting at 52.4 million tonnes.

This stunning increase is primarily on the back of remarkable turnarounds in Victoria and southern NSW, which have gone from a drought-stricken 2015-16 season to potentially breaking records in 2016-17.

In terms of individual commodities, it is likely Australia will break records in wheat, barley, lentils and chickpea production this season.

The strong demand for human consumption pulses and the good season is set to see the national lentil crop smash the previous record by an amazing 74pc, with ABARES flagging total production this year at 450,000t.

Acting ABARES executive director Peter Gooday said above average rainfall in September, followed by mild spring conditions, had ensured good soil moisture for the critical grain development period.

He said wheat production was set to rise 35pc to 32.9mt, smashing the previous record of 29.9mt and barley tonnes were estimated to grow by 24pc to 10.6mt, just beating the previous mark of 10.4mt.

Chickpea records are set to break, up 21pc to 1.23mt, in spite of significant acreages of lost crop in New South Wales due to excessive moisture during winter and spring.

Canola is set to rebound after a disappointing 2015-16, up 22pc to 3.6mt, the third biggest season on record.

Mr Gooday said that some cropping regions had been hard hit by seasonal conditions this year, including flooding in central west NSW and frosts in WA, but overall every State had a better year than last year.

Victoria is expected to double its crop production to 8.7mt, while South Australian tonnage is likely to be up 37pc to 9.8mt and Queensland winter crop production is up 25pc to 2.7mt.


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