Australian crop report

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Australian crop report is a quarterly report that assesses crop condition and prospects for major field crops in Australia. It includes analysis of climate and ag​ronomic conditions and forecasts of area, yield and production in key producing states.

Key issues

  • It was a mixed start to the 2018–19 winter crop season.
  • Autumn rainfall was well below average but timely rainfall in May assisted sowing of winter crops in most cropping regions in Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria and southern New South Wales.
  • Most cropping regions in Queensland and northern New South Wales experienced drier than average seasonal conditions throughout autumn, which significantly constrained planting intentions.
  • Sufficient and timely winter rainfall will be critically important for crop development. If rainfall is insufficient, or poorly timed, crop prospects will likely deteriorate, particularly in New South Wales and Queensland.
  • Winter rainfall is likely to be around average in cropping regions in Western Australia but below average in most other cropping regions, according to the latest three month rainfall outlook (June to August 2018) issued by the Bureau of Meteorology on 31 May 2018.
  • Total area planted to winter crops is forecast to decrease by 4 per cent to 21.1 million hectares as a result of declines in Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia.
  • For the major crops, area planted to wheat is forecast to fall by around 2 per cent to 12 million hectares, area planted to barley is forecast to increase by 10 per cent to 4.3 million hectares, and area planted to canola is forecast to fall 10 per cent to 2.5 million hectares.
  • Area planted to barley is forecast to rise in all states because of favourable expected returns to feed grains and it is more tolerant of drier than average seasonal conditions.
  • Among other crops, area planted to chickpeas is forecast to fall by 53 per cent to 528,000 hectares and area planted to oats forecast to fall by 7 per cent to 693,000 hectares.
  • Total winter crop production is forecast to decrease slightly to 37.7 million tonnes, assuming winter rainfall is sufficient and timely.
  • Total summer crop production is estimated to have increased by 13 per cent in 2017–18, driven by increased sorghum and cotton production.

Australian cropping land use

Map of Australia showing boundaries of Australian agricultural land use.  
Note: excludes sugarcane
Source: ABARES 2017, Catchment Scale Land Use of Australia - Update September 2017, ABARES, Canberra, November. CC BY 4.0.

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Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, 2018

Download the full version of the Australian Crop Report: June 2018 No. 186.

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Australian Crop Report: June 2018​ No. 186 PDF 323.9 MB

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Last reviewed:
13 Jun 2018