National overview

​​Australian Crop Report: June edition

The opening to the winter cropping season in 2020–21 was generally very favourable, especially in the eastern states and South Australia. Total rainfall between February and April was above average in most cropping regions in eastern states and South Australia, and was average in Western Australia. The start of the winter cropping season was significantly better in New South Wales and southern Queensland than the last two years. Rainfall during May was average in most cropping regions and timely in others to facilitate crop planting and germinate early sown crops. However, some cropping regions in Queensland and Western Australia did not receive sufficient rainfall in May to fully realise planting intentions.

The three-month seasonal outlook (June to August) issued by the Bureau of Meteorology on 4 June 2020 indicates winter rainfall is likely to be above average in most cropping regions in Queensland and New South Wales and around average in most other cropping regions. Day time temperatures are likely to be average in most cropping regions in Victoria and South Australia, and warmer than average in cropping regions in other states.

Area planted to winter crops in 2020–21 is forecast to increase by 23% to 22.5 million hectares, 5% above the 10-year average to 2019–20 of 21.4 million hectares. The majority of this increase is expected to be in New South Wales, where seasonal conditions so far are much more favourable than the last two winter crop seasons.

For the major winter crops, the area planted to wheat is forecast to increase by 27% to almost 13 million hectares, 8% above the 10-year average to 2019–20 of 12 million hectares. The area planted to barley is forecast to increase by 8% to just under 4.4 million hectares, also 8% above the 10-year average to 2019–20. Falls in barley prices in early May occurred in the midst of planting, and did not significantly change planting intentions in the eastern states with many producers maintaining planned crop rotations. The area planted to canola is forecast to increase by 32% to 2.4 million hectares, 6% below the 10-year average to 2019–20. Among other crops, area planted to chickpeas is expected to more than double to 531,000 hectares and area planted to oats is forecast to increase by 35% to 951,000 hectares.

Winter crop production is forecast to increase by 53% in 2020–21 to 44.5 million tonnes, which is 11% above the 10-year average to 2019–20. Yield prospects in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia are forecast to be above average given favourable levels of subsoil moisture at the beginning of June and the likelihood of above average rainfall in July. This forecast assumes average seasonal conditions in spring because Bureau of Meteorology outlook for spring is not yet available.

Wheat production is forecast to increase by 76% to 26.7 million tonnes, 13% above the 10-year average to 2019–20. Barley production is forecast to increase by 17% to 10.6 million tonnes, 16% above the 10-year average to 2019–20 of 9.1 million tonnes. Canola production is forecast to increase by 40% to 3.2 million tonnes, 1% below the 10-year average to 2019–20 of 3.3 million tonnes.

Amongst other crops, chickpeas production is forecast to increase by 135% to 661,000 tonnes and oats production is forecast to increase by 81% to 1.6 million tonnes.

Table 1 Winter crop area, Australia, 2010–11 to 2020–21
Year Unit New South Wales Victoria Queensland South Australia Western Australia Australia
2010–11 '000 ha 6,158 3,457 1,217 3,821 7,715 22,392
2011–12 '000 ha 5,969 3,411 1,205 3,838 8,252 22,693
2012–13 '000 ha 5,852 3,457 1,222 3,776 8,097 22,421
2013–14 '000 ha 5,314 3,283 1,105 3,448 8,249 21,419
2014–15 '000 ha 5,491 3,304 995 3,639 8,313 21,760
2015–16 '000 ha 5,375 2,915 1,049 3,152 7,771 20,283
2016–17 '000 ha 6,062 3,231 1,375 3,904 8,531 23,126
2017–18 '000 ha 5,489 3,509 1,302 3,645 7,898 21,861
2018–19 '000 ha 3,990 3,350 725 3,391 8,296 19,771
2019–20 s '000 ha 3,085 3,101 657 3,462 7,927 18,256
2020–21 f '000 ha 5,872 3,370 1,335 3,560 8,318 22,476
% change 2019–20 to 2020–21   90.4 8.7 103.3 2.8 4.9 23.1

f ABARES forecast s ABARES estimate.
Notes: Includes barley, canola, chickpeas, faba beans, field peas, lentils, linseed, lupins, oats, safflower, triticale and wheat. Due to a change in scope by the ABS of its agricultural data collections, crop production is shown for establishments with an estimated value of agricultural operations (EVAO) of $5,000 or more until 2014–15, and an EVAO of $40,000 or more from 2015–16. Area based on planted crop that is harvested, fed off or failed.
Sources: ABARES; ABS

Table 2 Winter crop production, Australia, 2010–11 to 2020–21
Year Unit New South Wales Victoria Queensland South Australia Western Australia Australia
2010–11 kt 14,784 7,625 1,821 9,316 8,044 41,672
2011–12 kt 11,952 7,352 2,329 7,371 16,600 45,673
2012–13 kt 11,123 6,886 2,156 6,470 11,244 37,936
2013–14 kt 9,773 6,774 1,516 7,221 16,511 41,881
2014–15 kt 10,445 5,117 1,464 7,439 14,662 39,198
2015–16 kt 11,624 3,568 2,104 6,104 14,206 37,687
2016–17 kt 15,510 9,511 3,159 10,656 17,737 56,675
2017–18 kt 7,743 7,612 1,438 7,022 14,510 38,396
2018–19 kt 3,243 4,603 686 5,487 17,633 31,737
2019–20 s kt 3,339 7,424 678 5,923 11,619 29,092
2020–21 f kt 12,059 7,443 2,031 7,601 15,290 44,520
% change 2019–20 to 2020–21   261.1 0.3 199.8 28.3 31.6 53.0

f ABARES forecast. s ABARES estimate.

NNotes: Includes barley, canola, chickpeas, faba beans, field peas, lentils, linseed, lupins, oats, safflower, triticale and wheat. Due to a change in scope by the ABS of its agricultural data collections, crop production is shown for establishments with an estimated value of agricultural operations (EVAO) of $5,000 or more until 2014–15, and an EVAO of $40,000 or more from 2015–16.
Sources: ABARES; ABS

Total summer crop production in 2019–20 is estimated to have fallen by 62% to 885,000 tonnes, driven by significant falls in grain sorghum and cotton production.

Production of grain sorghum is estimated to have fallen by 74% in 2019–20 to 298,000 tonnes, driven predominantly by minimal plantings in Queensland and northern New South Wales. Average yields are estimated to be 2.1 tonnes per hectare, which is 29% below the 10-year average to 2018–19.

Cotton production is estimated to have decreased by 72% in 2019–20 to 134,000 tonnes of lint and 189,000 tonnes of seed due to low supplies of irrigation water. Area planted to cotton is estimated to have declined by 83% to 60,000 hectares, the lowest since 1978–79 when it was 50,000 hectares.

Rice production is estimated to be around 57,000 tonnes, the lowest since 2007–08, because of low water allocations and high water prices.

Table 3 Summer crop area and production, Australia, 2009–10 to 2019–20
Year New South Wales Queensland Australia
'000 ha kt '000 ha kt '000 ha kt
2009–10 381 1,405 514 1,342 903 2,764
2010–11 713 2,514 790 1,901 1,514 4,446
2011–12 757 3,064 783 2,379 1,556 5,489
2012–13 711 3,205 686 2,250 1,411 5,506
2013–14 568 2,317 559 1,469 1,139 3,847
2014–15 435 2,044 696 2,134 1,149 4,263
2015–16 412 1,646 624 1,814 1,054 3,547
2016–17 662 2,289 566 1,278 1,247 3,668
2017–18 614 2,205 649 1,648 1,283 3,950
2018–19 468 915 603 1,307 1,094 2,338
2019–20 s 100 349 239 461 356 885
% change 2018–19 to 2019–20 –78.6 –61.9 –60.4 64.8 –67.5 –62.1

s ABARES estimate.
Note: State production includes cottonseed, grain sorghum, corn (maize), mung beans, rice, peanuts, soybeans and sunflowers. Total for Australia also includes navy beans, and small areas and volumes of summer crops in other states. Due to a change in scope by the ABS of its agricultural data collections, crop production is shown for establishments with an estimated value of agricultural operations (EVAO) of $5,000 or more until 2014–15, and an EVAO of $40,000 or more from 2015–16. Area based on planted crop that is harvested, fed off or failed.
Sources: ABARES; ABS

Statistical tables

​​​​


 
Last reviewed: 9 June 2020
Thanks for your feedback.
Thanks! Your feedback has been submitted.

We aren't able to respond to your individual comments or questions.
To contact us directly phone us or submit an online inquiry

Please verify that you are not a robot.

Skip