ABARES ups estimates for record wheat, canola crops

Grain Central, March 7, 2023

Harvesting canola in Western Australia in November. Photo: Freddie Gittus

AUSTRALIA is estimated to have produced 39.2 million tonnes (Mt) of wheat, 14.1Mt of barley and 8.3Mt of canola from the 2022-23 winter-crop harvest, according to estimates released today by ABARES in its quarterly Australian Crop and Agricultural Commodities reports.

The wheat figure is up 7 percent from the previous estimate released in December of 36.6Mt, which broke the national production record set in 2021-22 of 36.3Mt.

The canola estimate is up 13pc from 7.3Mt forecast in December, which broke last year’s record of 6.8Mt.

Barley is up 6pc on the previous estimate of 13.4Mt, and sits as the third-largest crop on record, with its area being down from 2021-22 because of increases for wheat and canola.

In commentary tied to the crop report and to ABARES March quarter Agricultural Commodities Report, in the record-breaking streak for Australian agriculture, , the national forecaster said 2022-23 gross value of production was set to reach $90 billion in the year to June 30 surpassing, by more than $2 billion in nominal terms, the record set in 2021-22.

Executive director of ABARES Jared Greenville said record gross value of production is expected, despite the floods across eastern Australia.

“Australia is benefitting from a third consecutive year of high rainfall, and it shows in the figures,” Dr Greenville said.

“Once again, we’re seeing record levels of production, driven by exceptional growing conditions and high commodity prices.

“Agricultural exports are also forecast to set new records, reaching $75 billion in 2022-23.

“This is the first time we’ve seen our exports exceed $70 billion, which is a huge achievement.”

“National winter crop production has driven much of these results, with the winter crop estimated at a new record of 67.3Mt in 2022-23.

“This beats last year’s record by 4Mt and is being driven by exceptional results out of Western Australia and South Australia.

Dr Greenville said high values of livestock production have also contributed to record numbers.

Drier conditions ahead

“This year will likely be the last hurrah for the La Niña rain system for a while, and we can expect drier seasonal conditions ahead.

“However, production will continue to be supported by good soil moisture and high water storage levels.”

ABARES is forecasting the value of 2023-24 agricultural production at $81B, the third-highest on record.

“Australia has been very fortunate to have had wet years and high commodity prices, but we are expecting commodity prices to ease with competition stepping up in global markets.

“Recent high international prices have been driven by drought conditions in major exporters and disruptions from the war in Ukraine.”

Dr Greenville said seasonal conditions were expected to improve in major producing regions which will see major exporters getting back on track in 2023-24.

“Over the medium term to 2027-28, seasonal conditions are expected to return to a more normal sequence and commodity prices are expected fall.

The value of agriculture will remain strong, reaching $74.4 billion in real terms.

“However, should we see a shift back towards a drier climate sequence and global economic uncertainty carry on for longer, greater pressure will be placed on sector growth.

WHEAT 2021-22 2022-23 Dec 2022-23 Mar
Qld 2,222,000 2,150,000 2,305,000
NSW 12,029,000 9,140,000 10,260,000
Vic 4,246,000 5,370,000 5,393,000
SA 4,750,000 6,820,000 7,350,000
WA 12,919,000 13,000,000 13,800,000
Tas 70,000 87,200 82,500
Total 36,236,000 36,567,200 39,190,500

Table 1: Australian wheat production estimates in tonnes and by state. Source: ABARES

WHEAT 2021-22 2022-23 Dec 2022-23 Mar
Qld 941,000 830,000 980,000
NSW 3,608,000 3,450,000 3,600,000
Vic 1,445,000 1,550,000 1,500,000
SA 2,008,000 2,200,000 2,200,000
WA 4,718,000 4,950,000 4,750,000
Tas 9,300 16,000 15,000
Total 12,729,300 12,996,000 13,045,000

Table 2: Australian wheat area in hectares and by state. Source: ABARES

BARLEY 2021-22 2022-23 Dec 2022-23 Mar
Qld 617,000 350,000 403,000
NSW 3,562,000 2,020,000 2,278,000
Vic 2,271,000 2,910,000 2,896,000
SA 2,146,000 2,660,000 2,900,000
WA 5,758,000 5,400,000 5,600,000
Tas 24,000 55,000 60,500
Total 14,378,000 13,395,000 14,137,500

Table 3: Australian barley production estimates in tonnes and by state. Source: ABARES

BARLEY 2021-22 2022-23 Dec 2022-23 Mar
Qld 207,000 130,000 136,000
NSW 1,159,000 740,000 780,000
Vic 870,000 850,000 820,000
SA 970,000 830,000 830,000
WA 1,884,000 1,550,000 1,550,000
Tas 4,300 10,000 11,000
Total 5,094,300 4,110,000 4,127,000

Table 4: Australian barley area in hectares and by state. Source: ABARES

CANOLA 2021-22 2022-23 Dec 2022-23 Mar
Qld 4,700 3,100 10,000
NSW 2,114,000 1,300,000 1,800,000
Vic 1,303,000 1,400,000 1,383,000
SA 435,000 610,000 770,000
WA 2,954,000 4,000,000 4,300,000
Tas 9,800 10,800 10,000
Total 6,820,500 7,323,900 8,273,000

Table 5: Australian canola production estimates in tonnes and by state. Source: ABARES

CANOLA 2021-22 2022-23 Dec 2022-23 Mar
Qld 2,200 2,400 4,700
NSW 941,000 850,000 900,000
Vic 569,000 615,000 600,000
SA 222,000 290,000 290,000
WA 1,513,000 1,900,000 2,100,000
Tas 3,600 5,000 5,000
Total 3,250,800 3,662,400 3,899,700

Table 6: Australian canola area in hectares and by state. Source: ABARES

Source: ABARES


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