DESIGNING a flexible wheat classification system to cater to the increasingly diverse needs of wheat buyers at home and abroad is among several key recommendations in a new Australian Export Grains Innovation Centre (AEGIC) report examining global wheat consumption out to 2030.
‘Wheat 2030: Anticipated trends in global consumption’ forecasts major trends over the next decade and presents a set of recommendations to help the Australian wheat industry maximise value for growers.
AEGIC chief economist Professor Ross Kingwell said by 2030 global wheat imports were expected to increase from 92 million tonnes (Mt) to 116Mt for human consumption, and 17.1Mt to 25.7Mt for animal feed.
“Wheat will remain a significant component of the world’s daily food intake,” he said.
Professor Kingwell said towards 2030 Australian wheat exports would increasingly come from Western Australia and South Australia, with the domestic food and feed market largely supplied by the eastern states.
“Australia’s classification system needs to cater for the increasingly divergent needs of the domestic and export markets,” he said.
“Over the next decade the bulk of Australian wheat must be functionally flexible, and support use in multiple products within multiple markets.
“While Australian wheat is currently well regarded for noodle applications, the growth in bread products within international markets provides ongoing opportunity.
“Australia also has strong capacity to develop new varieties for specific end products, for example udon noodles and biscuits.”
Professor Kingwell said South East Asia would remain a key exporting region for Australian wheat. The report makes specific recommendations for individual South East Asian markets.
Other potential opportunistic markets will include the Middle East and North Africa, Sub Saharan Africa, and South Asia.
Recommendation: Create an Australian wheat quality classification system that meets the increasingly divergent needs of the domestic and export markets.
Action: Design an increasingly flexible classification system that caters for differences between domestic and export market requirements.
Recommendation: Australian growers should continue to supply versatile wheat that performs well in multiple applications.
Action: Maintain engagement to understand customers’ current and future needs in the different markets that use Australian wheat for a range of applications.
Action: Integrate new information on customers’ wheat quality requirements into classification standards.
Recommendation: Stimulate demand for Australian wheat in South East Asian noodles.
Action: Promote and demonstrate the quality and value of Australian wheat in the manufacture of noodles, particularly to consumers to stimulate pull through demand.
Recommendation: Support demand for specialist Australian wheat in key markets.
Action: Identify emerging opportunities and viable path-to-market value chains for specialist Australian wheat, for example bread wheat and wheat for biscuits and cake.
AEGIC is an initiative of the Western Australian State Government and Australia’s Grains Research & Development Corporation.