DESPITE one of the most challenging canola harvests eastern Australia has ever seen, the national canola crop this year will year deliver another record, potentially exceeding 7.5 million tonnes (Mt).
The estimate was released on December 20 by the Australian Oilseeds Federation and factors in figures from ABARES and the Grain Industry Association of Western Australia.
The AOF national total sits above ABARES most recent estimate of 7.3Mt released in its December 6 Australian Crop Report.
AOF chief executive officer Nick Goddard said WA alone will deliver what would have been regarded as a strong national crop a few years ago, of more than 4.2Mt.
“Exceptional conditions in WA and South Australia this year have delivered strong yields, on the back of a significant lift in area of 7pc and 25pc respectively, while in NSW and Victoria the harvest has been much better than expected,” Mr Goddard said.
“Waterlogging, disease and crop losses due to flooding in NSW and Victoria, while devastating for affected farmers, have not significantly impacted the volumes we are seeing delivered across those states.
“Overall, quality has been fit for purpose and oil levels in the average range.”
The AOF introduced a seasonal receival grade for canola this year which has enabled many growers to deliver grain that might otherwise have been rejected.
This standard lifted the allowable mouldy seed count to 40 from five per thousand.
“The absolute size of this year’s crop is testament to the investment in disease management, best-practice agronomy, and broader farming-systems work that has been undertaken in recent years” Mr Goddard said.
“It is also a recognition of Australian canola growers’ adoption of best practice and response to market signals.”
|New South Wales||1,350,000|
|Tasmania + Queensland||20,000|
Source: AOF, ABARES, GIWA
The record Australian crop comes as the USDA forecasts global record oilseed production of 644Mt, up 7pc on last year.
Soybean production is expected to come in just under 400Mt, which is a record, while canola/rapeseed is also expected to reach a record of 84.3Mt, despite a drop in yield for the Canadian crop and ongoing challenges in Ukraine.
The loss of production in sunflower seed, projected to be 12pc, will provide support for alternate oils such as canola.
Mr Goddard said record production levels have resulted in good global oilseed stock levels, despite strong demand for food and biodiesel usage
The US EPA recently approved canola oil-derived renewable diesel as an advanced biofuels under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program, which is likely to further strengthen global demand for canola.