Queensland

​​​​​Australian Crop Report: February edition

Seasonal conditions in December 2018 and January 2019 were unfavourable in cropping regions in Queensland. Rainfall in most cropping regions was very much below average and temperatures above average. These conditions reduced soil moisture levels to below average in most cropping regions and area planted to dryland summer crops. Additionally, yields are expected to be below average.

According to the latest three-month rainfall outlook (March to May), issued by the Bureau of Meteorology on 14 February 2019, rainfall in most cropping regions in Queensland is more likely to be below average than above average.

Area planted to summer crops in Queensland is forecast to fall by 15% in 2018–19 to around 606,000 hectares. This reflects a significant fall in area planted to cotton.

Area planted to cotton is estimated to have declined by 44% to 106,000 hectares in 2018–19. Cotton production is forecast to fall by 39% to 210,000 tonnes of cotton lint and around 297,000 tonnes of cottonseed in 2018–19. The average yield is forecast to increase by 9% because area planted to lower yielding dryland cotton fell from 58,000 hectares last year to zero this year.

Area planted to grain sorghum is forecast to increase marginally to 385,000 hectares in 2018–19, which is well below the 10-year average to 2017-18 of 407,000 hectares. Production is forecast to fall by 8% to 924,000 tonnes in 2018–19. The average yield is expected to fall by 9%.

Table 7 Summer crop forecasts, Queensland, 2018–19
CropArea
'000 ha
Yield
t/ha
Production
kt
Area change
%
Prod. Change
%
Grain sorghum3852.409241–8
Cotton lint1061.98210–44–39
Cottonseed1062.80297–44–39

Note: Yields are based on area planted, except cotton which is based on area harvested. Area based on planted crop that is harvested, fed off or failed.

Harvesting of winter crops in Queensland is now largely complete. Total winter crop production in 2018–19 is estimated to have fallen by 51% to around 717,000 tonnes, largely driven by a significant fall in production of chickpeas. Forecast winter crop production will be the lowest since 1994–95. The decline in production in 2018–19 was largely due to significant falls in planted area.

Wheat production is estimated to have fallen by 41% to 400,000 tonnes. The area planted to wheat is estimated to have declined by 34% to 400,000 hectares and the average yield is estimated to have fallen by 11% to 1.00 tonne per hectare.

Chickpea production is estimated to have fallen by 70% in 2018–19 to 190,000 tonnes. This is a downwards revision of around 22% from the forecast presented in the December 2018 edition of Australian crop report. This is because frost damage in Central Queensland and the impact of drier than average seasonal conditions was greater than previously assessed.

Barley production is estimated to have fallen by 22% to 95,000 tonnes, largely driven by a 20% fall in planted area to 70,000 hectares.

Table 8 Winter crop estimates, Queensland, 2018–19
CropArea
'000 ha
Yield
t/ha
Production
kt
Area change
%
Prod. change
%
Wheat4001.00400–34–41
Barley701.3595–20–22
Chickpeas2000.95190–65–70

Note: Yields are based on area planted. Area based on planted crop that is harvested, fed off or failed.

 ​Statistical tables​​​​​​​​​​​​​
Last reviewed:
18 Feb 2019