Cropping forecasts drop sharply from last year’s record highs
FOLLOWING exceptionally high crop yields in 2016-17, Australia’s total winter crop production is forecast to decrease 39% but still remain above the 10-year average to 2015-16.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Barnaby Joyce said the latest forecast, released by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences, demonstrated the impact variable weather conditions was having on Australia’s cropping regions.
“Australia is a big country with a variable climate and highly fluctuating rainfall, so it is unrealistic to expect that all of our crops will be growing well at all times,” Mr Joyce said.
“According to the latest ABARES forecast, we will see a 39% drop in total winter crop production to 36.3 million tonnes as a result of mixed seasonal conditions.
“What we have to remember though is this forecast dip is coming off the back of Australia’s biggest winter crop on record last season at over 59.3 million tonnes, and yields are forecast to remain above the 10-year average to 2015-16.”
Mr Joyce said farmers had experienced below average and highly variable rainfall during winter in most Australian cropping regions, which had adversely affected crop condition in some of Australia’s key cropping regions.
However crops are in generally good condition going into spring in Victoria, eastern South Australia, southern and eastern New South Wales and southern Western Australia.
The September 2017 edition of Australian Crop Report is available online at www.agriculture.gov.au/ abares/publications.