As a result of the very favourable seasonal conditions over winter and the favourable outlook for spring rainfall, forecast winter crop production in 2016–17 has been revised up from the ABARES forecast in June 2016.
All major producing states are now expected to grow a bigger crop than initially forecast in June. It is the first time since 2007–08 that winter crop production is forecast to rise across all states.
Total winter crop production is forecast to rise by 16 pc in 2016–17 to a record 46.1 million tonnes (mt), driven by significant increases in forecast production in Western Australia and Victoria.
Wheat production is forecast to increase by 16 pc to 28.1 mt (June forecast 25.4mt), barley production by 11 pc to 9.5 mt (June forecast 9mt) and canola production by 23 pc to around 3.6 mt (June forecast 3.2mt).
Wheat and barley production are both forecast to be the second highest on record and canola production to be the third highest.
This forecast production will only be achieved if spring rainfall is sufficient and timely, especially in regions of Western Australia that had average to below average winter rainfall.
Additionally, crops in some regions of Australia have developed relatively shallow root systems—which will not readily access stores of lower layer soil moisture. Shallow root systems may reach stores of upper layer soil moisture, but this can disappear quickly in hot and dry conditions.
Source: ABARES. To view the full crop report, visit ABARES Publications