Agri­cul­ture’s value up $3.1B

North East & Goulburn Murray Farmer - - NEWS -

THE Aus­tralian Bureau of Sta­tis­tics (ABS) re­cently pub­lished its Agri­cul­tural Cen­sus data from the 2015-16 fi­nan­cial year.

The data col­lected in the cen­sus re­lates to a broad range of agri­cul­tural busi­nesses, from beef cat­tle pro­duc­tion to broad­acre farm­ing and vine­yards.

The stats re­vealed that there are cur­rently 85,681 agri­cul­tural busi­nesses in op­er­a­tion in Aus­tralia.

The gross value of Aus­tralian agri­cul­ture in­creased by $3.1 bil­lion to $56 bil­lion in 2015-16, with all states ex­cept North­ern Ter­ri­tory show­ing an in­crease in to­tal sec­tor value.

Na­tion­ally, the gross value of live­stock slaugh­ter­ings and other dis­pos­als in­creased by $1.9 bil­lion to $20.6 bil­lion in 2015-16.

The gross value of crop pro­duc­tion also in­creased (up five per cent) from $26.0 bil­lion in 201415 to $27.3 bil­lion in 2015-16.

The gross value of cat­tle and calves in Aus­tralia has in­creased by 13pc to $13.1 mil­lion in 2015-16, largely driven by higher slaugh­ter re­turns.

These in­creases are off­set by a 3pc de­crease to $15.4 bil­lion for to­tal broad­acre crops, re­flect­ing poor crop­ping con­di­tions pre­vail­ing dur­ing 2015-16 in south­ern Aus­tralia in par­tic­u­lar.

To­tal size of beef, dairy and sheep herds were down across the board in com­par­i­son to 2014-15, driven by dry con­di­tions early in the sea­son that saw many peo­ple shed stock, es­pe­cially in the south­ern states.

The av­er­age size of beef, dairy and sheep herds for the year were 805, 412 and 2857 re­spec­tively.

The top three crop types in terms of gross prod­uct were wheat ($6.2 bil­lion), fruit, nuts and grapes ($5.6 bil­lion) and veg­eta­bles ($3.6 bil­lion).

Av­er­age farm size reached 4331ha, which is up 0.3pc since 2014-15.

Aus­tralian farm­ing busi­nesses used an av­er­age of 107 me­gal­itres of wa­ter.

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