Mixed crop prospects after variable winter conditions

​​9 September 2014

After a generally favourable start to the 2014–15 winter crop season, different regional conditions have resulted in mixed crop prospects, according to the latest release of Australian Crop Report by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES).

Chief Commodity Analyst for ABARES, Jammie Penm, said while there were favourable conditions in South Australia other regions fared less well.

"The outlook for winter crops in South Australia is positive, reflecting average rainfall during winter and high levels of soil moisture. Generally dry conditions prevailed in many regions of the eastern states and Western Australia," Mr Penm said.

"In New South Wales, seasonal conditions have been highly variable but on average, crop yields are expected to improve from below average yields in 2013–14.

"Seasonal conditions have generally been dry in Victoria over winter, particularly in the major growing regions of the Mallee and the Wimmera. In Queensland, rainfall was below average between May and July but above average in August."

The Bureau of Meteorology's latest three-month rainfall outlook for spring does not indicate a strong tendency for either wetter or drier than normal conditions across the major cropping regions in Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia. In most of New South Wales and parts of central Victoria, conditions are likely to be drier than normal.

"As a whole, Australia's total winter crop production is forecast to fall by 12 per cent in 2014–15 to 38.6 million tonnes, which is a slight downward revision from the ABARES June 2014 forecast," Mr Penm said.

"With major winter crops of wheat, barley and canola forecast to decline in 2014-15, sufficient and timely rainfall during spring will be critical, particularly in areas where soil moisture levels are low."

To view the latest report visit daff.gov.au/abares/publications.

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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