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 clim​​ate and ag​ronomic conditions and forecasts of area, yield and production in key producing states.

Australian Crop Report: September edition

Key issues

  • Prospects for Australian winter crop production in 2019–20 deteriorated over winter because of unfavourable growing conditions in some regions, particularly in New South Wales and Queensland.
  • The condition of crops at the start of spring varied considerably between states:
    • In Victoria, most crops were in good to very good condition at the beginning of spring as a result of generally favourable growing conditions over winter.
    • Timely winter rainfall in Western Australia boosted yield prospects to around average for most crops in the state after a late break to the season.
    • In South Australia, crops in most major southern growing regions were in reasonable condition at the beginning of spring but crop prospects are generally below average in northern cropping regions.
    • Seasonal conditions were very unfavourable in most cropping regions in New South Wales and Queensland and winter crop production in these states is forecast to be very much below average.
  • Early spring rainfall will be important to final crop outcomes.
  • According to the latest seasonal conditions outlook, issued by the Bureau of Meteorology on 29 August 2019, September rainfall is likely to be above average in Western Australia and below average in most other cropping regions. October rainfall is likely to be below average in most cropping regions.
  • Winter crop production is forecast to rise by 11% in 2019–20 to 33.9 million tonnes. This a downward revision of 7% from the forecast ABARES published in June, and around 16% below the 10-year average to 2018–19.
  • For the major winter crops:
    • Wheat production is forecast to increase by 10% to around 19.1 million tonnes, 22% below the 10-year average to 2018–19.
    • Barley production is forecast to increase by 14% to around 9.5 million tonnes, 6% above the 10-year average to 2018–19. This follows increased area planted to barley nationally and yield prospects in Victoria and Western Australia.
    • Canola production is forecast to increase by 6% to around 2.3 million tonnes, 29% below the 10-year average to 2018–19.
  • Area planted to winter crops is estimated to have increased by 6% in 2019–20 to around 19.1 million hectares. This reflects the large amount of crop area that was taken out of grain production in 2018–19 and cut for hay.
  • Area planted to summer crops is forecast to fall by 28% in 2019–20 to around 758,000 hectares. This reflects low levels of soil moisture and an outlook for unfavourable seasonal conditions during spring in Queensland and northern New South Wales. Summer crop production is forecast to fall by 20% to 2.1 million tonnes.

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, 2019

Download the full version of the Australian Crop Report: September 2019 No. 191.

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Last reviewed:
09 Sep 2019