Forecast: Australia's Wheat Crop Will Be Up 17 Per Cent

Photo: Getty/David McNew

Winter grains crop production is forecast to increase by 12 per cent this season to a total of 42.1 million tonnes.

This is an upward revision of around 3 million tonnes from the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) September forecast.

Wheat production is forecast to rise by 17 per cent to 26.2 million tonnes and barley production up by 15 per cent to 8.6 million tonnes.

However, canola production is forecast to fall by 15 per cent to about 3.4 million tonnes. However, this still would make it the third largest canola crop on record.

The December edition of the Australian Crop Report says there’s a divide between crops in NSW and Queensland compared to Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria.

There has been an increase of 36 per in Western Australia to 15.1 million tonnes, a marginal rise in Victoria to 7.1 million tonnes, and an increase of 33 per cent in South Australia to 8.7 million tonnes.

However, conditions have been unfavourable in New South Wales and Queensland with crop production forecast to fall by 13 per cent in NSW and 20 per cent in Queensland.

Harvesting of winter crops is largely complete in Queensland and northern New South Wales, and is underway in Western Australia, South Australia, southern New South Wales and Victoria.

ABARES Executive Director Karen Schneider say: “Planting of the summer crop began in late September but the hot and dry conditions have created unfavourable conditions so we expect to see a modest reduction in summer crop production.”

The NAB’s Director of Commodities, Tim Glass, says the ABARES data is on the higher side of estimates.

“Current prices are finding good support, which is more reflective of a crop that is shrinking, particularly on the east coast where we are seeing lower yields,” he says.

Other ABARES grain forecasts for 2013–14 :

  • Total summer crop production is forecast to fall by 17 per cent in 2013–14 to 4.4 million tonnes.
  • Grain sorghum production is forecast to fall by 20 per cent to around 1.6 million tonnes
  • rice production is forecast to decline by 22 per cent to 907,000 tonnes
  • cotton production is forecast to fall by around 3 per cent to around 975,000 tonnes of cotton lint and around 1.4 million tonnes of cottonseed.

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