Crop yields hold up despite dry conditions

Beef Central, 06/12/2012

Crop yield have held up reasonably well in many winter cropping regions despite the dry seasonal conditions experienced in the past few months, according to the latest three monthly Australian Crop Report.

The December edition of the Australian Crop Report,  released this week by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences, says winter crop production is forecast to be lower than the record harvest of last season.

However yields in many regions were aided by favourable levels of lower layer soil moisture.

“In south-eastern Australia, seasonal conditions were generally consistent with the spring seasonal outlook the Bureau of Meteorology issued on 22 August 2012, which was incorporated into forecasts presented in the September edition of Australian Crop Report,” ABARES executive director Paul Morris said.

“In Western Australia, rainfall was generally below average throughout the growing season and a dry October adversely affected yields in southern parts of the state.”

Australian winter crop production is forecast to be around 35.1 million tonnes in 2012–13, which is 23 per cent lower than last year’s record harvest and marginally lower (1.1 million tonnes or 3 per cent) than the forecast released by ABARES in September.

At this forecast level, winter crop production will still be around 14 per cent higher than the average achieved over the five years to 2010–11.

For the major winter crops, wheat production is forecast to fall by 26 per cent to around 22 million tonnes in 2012–13; barley production to fall by 18 per cent to around 6.9 million tonnes; and canola production to fall by 16 per cent to around 2.6 million tonnes.

Total summer crop production is forecast to remain largely unchanged from last season at around 5.5 million tonnes.

“The area planted to summer crops is forecast to fall by 2 per cent to just under 1.6 million hectares, largely reflecting an estimated significant decline in the area planted to dryland cotton,” Mr Morris said.

To view the report in detail click here


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