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1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2007  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/01/2007   
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Contents >> Agriculture >> Agricultural production

AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION

CROPS

The area of land sown to crops, vegetables, fruit and nuts increased by 9% in the last four years and almost doubled in the past 40 years. These increases reflect improved plant genetics, greater variety in plant species, increased mechanisation and fertiliser use, as well as better control of pests and diseases in Australia. Table 14.11 shows the area of crops in the states and territories of Australia since 2000-2001, and table 14.12 is a summary of the area, production and gross value of the principal crops in the most recent years.


14.11 AREA OF CROPS

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
NT
ACT
Aust.
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
'000 ha

2000-01
6,723
3,044
2,955
3,982
7,731
79
6
1
24,520
2001-02
6,635
2,958
2,683
4,175
7,525
78
6
-
24,060
2002-03
6,040
3,290
2,265
4,339
7,557
75
7
2
23,575
2003-04
7,241
3,479
2,745
4,454
8,079
73
7
2
26,080
2004-05
7,674
3,570
2,694
4,397
8,329
71
7
1
26,742

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).

14.12 SELECTED CROPS, Area, production and gross value

Area
Production
Gross value



2002-03
2003-04
2004-05
2002-03
2003-04
2004-05
2002-03
2003-04
2004-05
’000 ha
'000 ha
'000 ha
’000 t
’000 t
'000 t
$m
$m
$m

Crops for grain
Barley
3,864
4,477
4,646
3,865
10,382
7,740
984
1,750
1,233
Grain sorghum
667
734
755
1,465
2,009
2,011
300
319
270
Maize
50
70
72
310
^395
420
72
^88
81
Oats
911
1,089
894
957
2,018
1,283
210
279
172
Rice
46
66
51
438
553
339
153
180
101
Wheat
11,170
13,067
13,399
10,132
26,132
21,905
2,692
5,636
4,317
Lupins
1,025
851
845
726
1,180
937
212
278
193
Crops cut for hay
Cereal crops
505
603
579
1,581
2,964
2,002
332
552
258
Non-cereal crops
^54
^37
39
^166
122
131
^32
21
24
Other crops
Sugar cane cut for crushing
448
448
434
36,995
36,993
37,822
1,019
854
980
Tobacco
2
^2
^1
6
^4
^4
41
^25
^28
Cotton lint
245
227
304
^364
317
563
(a)^853
(a)751
(a)945
Peanuts (in shell)
^10
^14
^14
^28
^44
^32
^22
^30
^21
Soybean
^6
^27
^27
^9
^60
^45
^3
^28
^17
Canola
1,298
1,211
1,377
871
1,703
1,542
389
686
503
Sunflower
^47
^72
^48
^26
^57
^61
^19
28
^24
Orchard fruit
Oranges
n.a.
n.a.
n.a.
599
395
498
337
236
310
Apples
n.a.
n.a.
n.a.
326
260
327
381
367
529
Pears (excl. Nashi)
n.a.
n.a.
n.a.
136
139
148
80
105
89
Peaches
n.a.
n.a.
n.a.
^97
^74
^90
^84
^87
^99
Other fruit
Bananas
11
11
10
265
257
266
322
286
327
Pineapples
3
3
^3
105
110
104
33
37
33
Grapes (bearing)
143
151
153
1,497
2,015
2,027
1,371
1,689
1,508
Vegetables
Carrots
7
7
7
306
303
316
162
150
166
Potatoes
36
36
37
1,247
1,310
1,288
485
481
434
Tomatoes
7
8
8
364
474
408
^226
^280
^162

(a) Includes value of cotton seed.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).


In Australia, cereals are divided into autumn-winter-spring growing (winter cereals) and spring-summer-autumn growing (summer cereals). In temperate regions winter cereals such as wheat, oats, barley and rye are often grown in rotation with pastures, such as subterranean clover, medics or lucerne, and with other winter crops such as canola, field peas and lupins. Rice, maize and sorghum are summer cereals, often being grown in rotation with winter cereals in some areas.

Wheat

Wheat is Australia's largest crop. It is produced in all states but primarily on the mainland in a narrow crescent known as the wheat belt. Inland of the Great Dividing Range, the wheat belt stretches in a curve from central Queensland through New South Wales, Victoria and southern South Australia. In Western Australia, the wheat belt continues around the south-west of the state and some way north, along the western side of the continent.

Most of Australia's wheat is exported for human consumption. A small proportion of production is used domestically for human consumption, with lower quality grain being used for domestic stock feed.

New varieties of wheat have enabled it to be grown in more marginal areas in recent years. In particular the development of dual purpose winter wheat varieties which, like oats, allow grazing of the plant up to a few months prior to harvest, have become very popular in some areas.

While severe drought conditions across Australia more than halved wheat production in 2002-03, increased plantings overall and an excellent season in Western Australia resulted in a record production of 26.1 million (mill.) tonnes in 2003-04 (table 14.13). However, this high mark was not sustained as less than ideal conditions, especially in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, saw the national harvest in 2004-05 decline 16%, despite a 3% increase in area planted. New South Wales wheat farmers suffered a small fall in yield but were able to boost production by 3%.


14.13 WHEAT FOR GRAIN, Area and production

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.(a)

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
3,671
1,143
885
1,976
4,460
7
12,141
2001-02
3,446
1,136
604
1,987
4,350
6
11,529
2002-03
2,995
1,239
514
1,957
4,458
7
11,170
2003-04
3,983
1,409
790
1,960
4,917
8
13,067
2004-05
4,256
1,327
711
1,979
5,118
7
13,399

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
7,867
3,080
1,157
4,162
5,814
26
22,108
2001-02
8,043
2,791
901
4,778
7,760
25
24,299
2002-03
2,495
890
601
2,072
4,047
25
10,132
2003-04
7,288
3,145
1,110
3,490
11,070
26
26,132
2004-05
7,537
1,927
1,170
2,621
8,619
30
21,905

(a) Includes ACT.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Graph 14.14 shows that variability in wheat yields is a part of life for wheat growers, with dry periods and, less commonly, floods resulting in significant falls in production approximately every ten years over the past 100 years.

14.14 WHEAT PRODUCTION - 1905-2005 14.14 WHEAT PRODUCTION - 1905-2005


Oats

Oats are traditionally grown in moist, temperate regions. However, in recent years improved varieties and management practices have enabled oats to be grown over a wider range of soil and climatic conditions. Oats have a high fodder feed value and, with the exception of recently developed dual purpose varieties of wheat, produce a greater bulk of growth than other winter cereals. They need less cultivation, and respond well to superphosphates and nitrogen. Oats have two main uses - as a grain crop, and as a fodder crop. Fodder crops can either be grazed in the initial stages of growth and then locked up for a period prior to harvesting for grain, or else mown and baled for hay or cut for chaff.

The majority of Australian oats harvested for grain is used domestically for stock feed purposes. A small proportion of high quality grain is used for human consumption. A small proportion of grain production is exported for human consumption.

In 2004-05 the total area of oats planted fell by 18% to 894,000 ha after four years of increased plantings (table 14.15). With plantings down and conditions impacting on yield, total production fell 36% to 1.3 mill. tonnes. Victoria suffered the biggest drop, down 44% while production in Western Australia and New South Wales fell 39% and 30% respectively.


14.15 OATS FOR GRAIN, Area and production

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.(a)

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
168
140
13
75
248
7
650
2001-02
231
142
^11
^108
287
6
784
2002-03
308
188
*9
88
314
4
911
2003-04
449
194
*9
89
344
4
1,089
2004-05
400
150
*21
76
243
^4
894

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
246
351
6
117
317
13
1,050
2001-02
320
334
^7
^203
557
12
1,434
2002-03
149
250
^4
70
477
7
957
2003-04
610
507
*5
137
752
7
2,018
2004-05
429
284
*10
90
460
^9
1,283

(a) Includes ACT.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Barley

This cereal contains two main groups of varieties, 2-row and 6-row (the number of rows referring to the number of rows of seed on each stalk). The former is generally, but not exclusively, preferred for malting purposes. Barley is grown principally as a grain crop, although in some areas it is used as a fodder crop for grazing, with grain being subsequently harvested if conditions are suitable. It is often grown as a rotation crop with wheat, oats and pasture. As barley has a short growing period, it may provide quick grazing or timely fodder supplies when other sources are not available. Barley grain may be crushed to meal for stock feed or sold for malting.

The total area of barley planted increased by 4% to 4.6 mill. ha in 2004-05, the fifth year of increased plantings (table 14.16). The largest areas planted were in Western Australia (1.3 mill. ha) and South Australia (1.3 mill. ha). However, production in these states fell as it did in three other states bringing the total harvest down by 25% to 7.7 mill. tonnes.


14.16 BARLEY FOR GRAIN, Area and production
NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
615
693
112
1,041
983
10
3,454
2001-02
665
700
96
1,151
1,088
7
3,707
2002-03
636
778
108
1,194
1,140
8
3,864
2003-04
951
872
151
1,216
1,278
9
4,477
2004-05
1,023
924
97
1,280
1,313
8
4,646

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
1,253
1,670
115
2,320
1,358
26
6,743
2001-02
1,382
1,656
171
2,782
2,263
26
8,280
2002-03
428
478
148
1,440
1,349
21
3,865
2003-04
1,955
2,275
263
2,691
3,170
28
10,382
2004-05
1,761
1,305
178
1,979
2,489
28
7,740

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Grain sorghum

The sorghums are summer growing crops which are used in a number of ways: grain sorghum for grain; sweet or fodder sorghum, Sudan grass and Columbus grass for silage, green feed and grazing; and broom millet for brooms and brushware. However, the grain is used primarily as stock feed and is an important source for supplementing other coarse grains for this purpose.

In 2004-05, grain sorghum was one of only two of the major crops to increase production, albeit marginally (table 14.17). A 19% increase in New South Wales production was offset by a 10% decrease in Queensland.


14.17 GRAIN SORGHUM, Area and production

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
258
2
494
(a)
2
(a)
758
2001-02
258
**
562
(a)
**
(a)
823
2002-03
255
**
405
(a)
**
(a)
667
2003-04
212
**
519
(a)
*1
(a)
734
2004-05
211
**
544
(a)
-
(a)
755

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
770
4
1,156
(a)
4
(a)
1,935
2001-02
767
*4
1,247
(a)
**
(a)
2,021
2002-03
^531
**
930
(a)
**
(a)
1,465
2003-04
709
**
1,296
(a)
*1
(a)
2,009
2004-05
847
-
1,164
(a)
-
(a)
2,011

(a) Data not collected.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Maize

Maize is a summer cereal requiring specific soil and climatic conditions. The majority of maize used for grain is grown in the south-east and Atherton Tablelands regions of Queensland, and the north coast, northern slopes and tablelands, and the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area regions in New South Wales. Small amounts are grown for green feed and silage in association with the dairy industry.

Maize production increased by 6% in 2004-05 to 420,000 tonnes (table 14.18).


14.18 MAIZE FOR GRAIN, Area and production

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.(a)

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
26
1
47
(b)
*
(b)
74
2001-02
28
*1
53
(b)
**
(b)
83
2002-03
^21
*1
^28
(b)
-
(b)
50
2003-04
22
**
^48
(b)
-
(b)
70
2004-05
^25
*1
46
(b)
-
(b)
72

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
178
8
159
(b)
*
(b)
345
2001-02
246
*9
198
(b)
*
(b)
454
2002-03
^163
*15
^131
(b)
-
(b)
310
2003-04
178
**
^211
(b)
-
(b)
^395
2004-05
^242
^2
173
(b)
1
(b)
420

(a) Includes NT.
(b) Data not collected.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Rice

Almost all of Australia's rice is grown in New South Wales, with production centred in the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area. Rice production is dependent on supplies of irrigation water and, therefore, is significantly affected by reductions in irrigation water allocations available to farmers.

In 2004-05, rice plantings fell by 39% to 339,000 tonnes due to 23% less plantings and cold conditions at a critical stage of plant development (table 14.19).


14.19 RICE FOR GRAIN, Area and production

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
175
2
(a)
(a)
*
(a)
177
2001-02
143
^2
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
144
2002-03
45
**
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
46
2003-04
66
**
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
66
2004-05
51
1
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
51

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
1,625
18
(a)
(a)
*
(a)
1,643
2001-02
1,179
*14
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
1,192
2002-03
435
**
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
438
2003-04
550
*3
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
553
2004-05
335
4
(a)
(a)
-
(a)
339

(a) Data not collected.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Vegetables

Australia produces an extremely wide variety of vegetables, driven largely by demand from a cosmopolitan population. Many vegetables, such as spring onions, mushrooms and fresh tomatoes are grown close to major capital cities, taking advantage of proximity to markets and low transport costs. However, the majority of vegetables are produced in the major irrigation areas of each state and territory, where access to land and water are the key drivers of investment.

In 2004-05 the area sown to vegetables was 123,000 ha, a decrease of 2% from the previous year. Potatoes were by far the largest vegetable crop in terms of area and production, accounting for 30% of the total area of vegetables planted in 2004-05 (tables 14.20 and 14.21). South Australia, Tasmania and Victoria together produced three-quarters of the total potato crop in 2004-05. Tomatoes ranked second with Victoria producing nearly 60% of the 408,000 tonnes grown nationally. Tasmania accounted for almost all green pea production, producing 92% of the total crop, or 26,500 tonnes in 2004-05.


14.20 SELECTED VEGETABLES, Area

French and
runner beans
Carrots
Onions
Green
peas
Lettuces
Potatoes
Pumpkins
Tomatoes
All
vegetables
’000 ha
'000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
'000 ha
'000 ha
’000 ha
’000 ha
'000 ha

2000-01
6.6
8.0
5.0
5.8
5.8
39.6
8.3
9.6
137.1
2001-02
6.6
7.7
5.5
6.0
6.0
37.9
6.5
8.5
131.7
2002-03
^7.0
7.4
5.3
5.5
6.1
35.9
6.6
7.3
121.2
2003-04
7.1
7.2
5.6
5.7
6.1
36.1
5.9
8.5
125.5
2004-05
6.0
6.5
6.0
5.4
5.7
37.4
5.4
7.8
123.4

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).

14.21 SELECTED VEGETABLES, Production

French and
runner beans
Carrots
Onions
Green peas
(shelled weight)
Lettuces
Potatoes
Pumpkins
Tomatoes
’000 t
’000 t
’000 t
’000 t
’000 t
’000 t
’000 t
’000 t

2000-01
32.8
320.9
221.9
26.2
152.7
1,302.1
109.4
556.2
2001-02
33.7
331.1
282.5
28.4
135.0
1,333.2
96.3
425.0
2002-03
34.6
305.7
228.6
27.4
121.5
1,247.3
93.2
364.4
2003-04
31.1
302.6
233.4
29.7
127.2
1,310.4
94.6
474.2
2004-05
33.7
316.0
256.5
28.9
132.4
1,288.3
89.9
407.9

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Fruit (excluding grapes)

A wide variety of fruit is grown in Australia, ranging from pineapples, mangoes and pawpaws in the tropics to pome, stone and berry fruits in temperate regions. Table 14.22 shows the number of trees for the main types of orchard fruit, and the area under cultivation for bananas and pineapples.

Production of apples increased 26% in 2004-05 to 326,600 tonnes (table 14.22). The most significant crops in terms of gross value of production are apples, bananas and oranges (table 14.23).


14.22 SELECTED FRUIT, Number of trees(a) and area

Orchard fruit
Area of tropical fruit


Apples
Apricots
Oranges
Peaches
Pears
Plums
and
prunes
Bananas
Pineapples
All area of
fruit and nuts
(excluding
grapes)
’000 trees
'000 trees
’000 trees
’000 trees
’000 trees
'000 trees
ha
ha
ha

2000-01
6,455
498
6,669
1,674
1,373
1,328
11,737
2,733
170,545
2001-02
8,070
^411
6,767
1,587
1,312
1,325
12,583
2,963
161,439
2002-03
8,391
^440
7,129
^2,150
1,306
1,470
10,659
2,616
174,123
2003-04
8,885
^478
6,814
1,877
1,386
1,450
10,861
2,664
172,507
2004-05
9,163
*601
7,434
^2,031
1,439
^2,056
10,361
^2,742
165,418

(a) Refers to trees of bearing age (i.e. four years and over for apples, six years and over for other fruit).
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).

14.23 SELECTED FRUIT, Quantity and value of production

Apples
Apricots
Oranges
Peaches
Pears
Plums and
prunes
Bananas
Pineapples

QUANTITY OF PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
324.6
20.6
550.2
74.1
168.9
31.3
358.4
119.6
2001-02
320.5
^12.4
450.6
88.7
144.9
25.5
313.3
119.3
2002-03
326.1
^19.7
599.5
^97.2
135.9
^33.2
264.8
104.7
2003-04
260.0
^10.7
395.2
^74.5
138.5
24.4
257.2
110.4
2004-05
326.6
*19.7
498.1
^90.3
147.7
^32.8
265.6
104.0

GROSS VALUE OF PRODUCTION ($m)

2000-01
282.0
29.5
276.8
72.7
90.2
58.5
408.6
44.0
2001-02
348.0
18.1
280.8
75.7
99.4
52.7
415.3
40.1
2002-03
380.6
^24.7
336.7
^84.3
80.3
^64.3
321.6
32.5
2003-04
367.5
^24.1
236.0
^86.8
105.0
55.2
285.6
37.1
2004-05
528.5
^29.0
310.0
^99.3
89.2
^58.2
326.9
33.5

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).


Grapes

Grapes are a temperate crop requiring predominantly winter rainfall and warm to hot summer conditions for ripening. Almost all grape production in Australia depends on irrigation water as a supplement to rainfall. An absence of late-spring frosts is essential if the loss of the developing fruit is to be prevented. Grapes are grown for winemaking, drying, and to a lesser extent, for table use. The better known grape producing areas include the Adelaide Hills, Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, Riverland, McLaren Vale and Coonawarra (all in South Australia); Sunraysia and the Yarra Valley (Victoria); the Hunter and Riverina (New South Wales); the Swan Valley and Margaret River (Western Australia); and the Tamar Valley and Coal River Valley (Tasmania).

The gross value of grape production for 2004-05 fell by 11% from the previous year, to $1,508m. Tables 14.24 and 14.25 show the area of vines and the quantity of grapes produced.


14.24 VITICULTURE, Area, production and value

Area
Production of grapes for
Total production(a)



Bearing
Total
Winemaking
Drying
Quantity
Gross value
’000 ha
’000 ha
’000 t
fresh weight
’000 t
fresh weight
’000 t
fresh weight
$m

2000-01
131
148
1,391
90
1,546
1,517.5
2001-02
143
159
1,515
153
1,754
1,577.7
2002-03
143
157
1,330
92
1,497
1,370.8
2003-04
151
164
1,817
129
2,015
1,688.8
2004-05
153
167
1,818
135
2,027
1,508.2

(a) Includes grapes used for table and other purposes.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).

14.25 VITICULTURE, Area and production - 2004-05

Area of vines at harvest
Production of grapes used for


Bearing
Not yet
bearing
All
vines
Winemaking
Drying
Table and
other
Total
ha
ha
ha
tonnes
fresh weight
tonnes
fresh weight
tonnes
fresh weight
tonnes
fresh weight

Red grapes
92,849
5,184
98,033
1,009,983
10,487
26,428
1,046,897
White grapes
60,355
8,278
68,632
808,443
124,926
46,234
979,603
Total
153,204
13,462
166,665
1,818,426
135,412
72,662
2,026,500

Source: Australian Wine and Grape Industry, 2005 (1329.0).


Oilseeds

The oilseeds industry is a relatively young industry by Australian agricultural standards. The specialist oilseed crops grown include sunflower, soybeans, canola and safflower. Sunflower and soybeans are summer crops while the others are winter crops. In Australia, oilseeds are crushed for their oil, which is used for edible and industrial purposes, and in protein meals for livestock feeds.

The 1990s saw the emergence of canola as the main oilseed crop, with production increasing from around 70,000 tonnes in 1990-91 to a high of 2.8 mill. tonnes in 1999-2000. With canola again accounting for 93% of the crop, oilseeds production in 2004-05 of 1.7 mill. tonnes was 9% less than the previous year's harvest (table 14.26). Before the emergence of canola, the main specialist oilseed crop was sunflower seed. Peanuts and cotton are also major sources of oil as a by-product to their main outputs, which are food and fibre respectively.


14.26 OILSEEDS, Area and production

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.(a)

AREA (’000 ha)

2000-01
569
266
79
157
517
-
1,589
2001-02
585
241
^60
165
394
^1
1,447
2002-03
514
248
^28
214
349
^-
1,355
2003-04
411
242
^58
250
358
-
1,321
2004-05
486
287
26
236
428
^1
1,464

PRODUCTION (’000 t)

2000-01
894
383
73
206
353
-
1,910
2001-02
796
349
^52
273
419
^1
1,890
2002-03
201
177
^17
211
299
-
907
2003-04
507
386
^51
355
527
-
1,827
2004-05
554
345
^23
246
488
^1
1,658

(a) Includes ACT.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Cotton

Cotton is grown mainly in inland areas of northern New South Wales and southern Queensland, primarily for its fibre (lint), and relies heavily on irrigation water to produce profitable yields. When the cotton is mature, seed cotton is taken to a gin where it is separated (ginned) into cotton lint and cotton seed. The lint is used for yarn while the cotton seed is further processed at an oil mill, where the short fibres (linters) remaining on the cotton seed after ginning are removed. These fibres are too short to make into cloth, but are used for wadding, upholstery and paper. The seeds are then separated into kernels and hulls. The hulls are used for stock feed and as fertiliser, while the kernels are crushed to extract oil. The oilcake residue (crushed kernels) is ground into meal, which is a protein roughage, and is used as a stock feed.

The estimated gross value of cotton lint and cotton seed in 2004-05 was $945.1m, a 26% increase on the previous year (table 14.27).


14.27 COTTON LINT, Area, production and value

Area
Quantity
Gross value(a)
’000 ha
’000 t
$m

2000-01
536
666
1,305
2001-02
458
675
1,327
2002-03
245
^364
^853
2003-04
227
317
751
2004-05
304
563
945

(a) Includes value of cotton seed.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).


Crops and pastures cut for hay or silage

To counter Australia's seasonal conditions and unreliable rainfall, many farmers use hay and silage as methods of fodder conservation to supplement pasture and other natural sources of stockfeed.

Considerable areas are devoted to fodder crops and sown pastures, which are either used for grazing (as green feed) or harvested and conserved as hay or silage (table 14.28).


14.28 CROPS AND PASTURES CUT FOR HAY OR SILAGE, Area and production

Hay
Silage made

Area
Production
Production
'000 ha
'000 t
'000 t

2000-01
1,521
6,433
2,960
2001-02
1,416
5,864
2,966
2002-03
1,299
4,913
2,549
2003-04
1,688
7,663
3,757
2004-05
1,639
6,322
3,859

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Sugar

Sugar cane is grown commercially in Australia along the east coast over a distance of more than 2,000 kilometres from Maclean in northern New South Wales to Mossman in Queensland. More recently, it has also been grown in Western Australia.

More than 90% of sugar cane production occurs in Queensland (table 14.29), with 75% of the crop grown north of the Tropic of Capricorn.


14.29 SUGAR CANE CUT FOR CRUSHING, Area, production and yield

New South Wales
Queensland
Western Australia



Area
harvested
Production
Yield
Area
harvested
Production
Yield
Area
harvested
Production
Yield
’000 ha
’000 t
tonnes/ha
’000 ha
’000 t
tonnes/ha
’000 ha
’000 t
tonnes/ha

2000-01
18
1,826
102.5
382
25,867
67.7
3
423
122.2
2001-02
^25
^2,886
114.4
398
28,250
70.9
3
288
105.9
2002-03
21
2,362
110.6
423
34,231
80.9
3
401
116.4
2003-04
*30
*2,988
^99.5
414
33,553
81.1
4
453
112.0
2004-05
20
2,133
107.5
411
35,290
85.9
3
399
118.7

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


LIVESTOCK

Cattle, sheep and pigs are the main livestock grown in Australia and have been present since the earliest days of European settlement.


14.30 LIVESTOCK

Cattle
Sheep and lambs
Pigs
’000
’000
’000

2001
27,722
110,928
2,748
2002
27,870
106,166
2,940
2003
26,664
99,252
2,658
2004
27,465
101,288
2,548
2005
27,782
101,125
2,538

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Cattle

Cattle farming occurs in all states and territories. While dairy cattle are restricted mainly to southern and coastal districts, beef cattle are concentrated in Queensland and New South Wales.

Cattle numbers in Australia increased slowly during the 1960s and 1970s, despite seasonal changes and heavy slaughterings, to a peak of 31.8 mill. in 1976 (graph 14.33). Beef cattle production is often combined with cropping, dairying and sheep. In the northern half of Australia, cattle properties and herd sizes are very large, pastures are generally unimproved, fodder crops are rare and beef is usually the only product. The industry is more intensive in the south, with higher stocking rates per hectare, improved pastures and use of fodder crops, use of rotational grazing practices and increased inputs such as fertiliser and animal health products.

Drought conditions in the early-1980s led to a decline in the beef herd until 1984. For the next five years the size of the herd remained relatively stable. Between 1989 and 1998 cattle numbers increased gradually, despite unfavourable weather conditions continuing in many parts of Australia. After a slight decline in 1999, cattle numbers increased to a high of 27.9 mill. in 2002. Dry conditions over much of the country in 2002-03 saw cattle numbers fall by 4% to 26.7 mill. However, improved conditions in some regions resulted in numbers increasing by 3% to 27.5 mill. in 2003-04 and a further 1% to 27.8 mill. in 2004-05.

Tables 14.31 and 14.32 show the number of cattle, by purpose and the number of cattle, by state and territory at 30 June for the period 2001-2005.


14.31 CATTLE, By purpose - 30 June
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
’000
'000
'000
'000
'000

Milk cattle
Cows (in milk and dry)
2,176
2,123
2,050
2,038
2,076
Other milk cattle
1,041
1,008
999
1,016
981
Total
3,217
3,131
3,049
3,055
3,056
Meat cattle
Bulls and bull calves used or intended for service
591
620
570
617
659
Other calves under one year
6,083
5,679
5,292
5,260
5,357
Cows and heifers one year and over
12,007
12,652
12,245
12,570
12,935
Other cattle one year and over
5,823
5,788
5,508
5,964
5,776
Total
24,504
24,739
23,615
24,410
24,725
Total
27,722
27,870
26,664
27,465
27,782

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).

14.32 CATTLE, By state and territory - 30 June

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
NT
Aust.(a)
’000
’000
’000
’000
’000
’000
’000
’000

2001
6,215
4,405
11,376
1,242
2,128
636
(b)1,707
27,722
2002
6,021
4,412
11,544
1,381
2,104
619
(b)1,777
27,870
2003
5,817
4,388
10,740
1,401
1,945
682
(b)1,683
26,664
2004
5,816
4,281
11,500
1,352
2,095
684
(c)1,730
27,465
2005
5,734
4,509
11,600
1,384
2,127
689
(c)1,729
27,782

(a) Includes ACT.
(b) Excludes dairy cattle.
(c) No dairy cattle were recorded in NT.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


14.33 CATTLE(a) - 1885 to 2005 14.33 CATTLE(a) - 1885 to 2005


Sheep

Sheep numbers reached a peak of 180 mill. in Australia in 1970 (graph 14.36). In general, numbers have fallen since then. Poor market prospects for wool after 1990 had a marked impact on the flock size with sheep numbers falling rapidly until 1995, after which there was a gradual decline until 1999. By 30 June 2003, sheep and lambs had fallen to 99.3 mill. with numbers being severely affected by drought conditions throughout much of the country. Improved conditions in 2003-04 saw numbers increase by 2% but in 2004-05 more climatic difficulties, mainly in New South Wales, caused a marginal fall in the total flock (tables 14.34 and 14.35).


14.34 SHEEP AND LAMBS, By state - 30 June

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.(a)
mill.
mill.
mill.
mill.
mill.
mill.
mill.

2001
40.9
22.3
8.7
12.6
23.1
3.2
110.9
2002
38.5
21.4
6.8
13.0
23.1
3.4
106.2
2003
33.7
20.4
4.8
13.1
23.9
3.3
99.3
2004
35.2
20.0
4.8
12.9
25.1
3.2
101.3
2005
34.3
20.6
4.9
12.5
25.6
3.1
101.1

(a) Includes ACT and NT.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).

14.35 SHEEP AND LAMBS - 30 June

2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
mill.
mill.
mill.
mill.
mill.

Sheep
83.0
77.8
73.4
72.4
71.9
Lambs (under one year old)
28.0
28.4
25.9
28.9
29.2
Total
110.9
106.2
99.3
101.3
101.1

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


14.36 SHEEP AND LAMBS - 1885 to 2005 14.36 SHEET AND LAMBS - 1885 to 2005


Pigs

Pig farming is a highly intensive industry. The majority of pigs are grown in specially designed sheds which provide a controlled environment conducive to the efficient production of large numbers of animals. Recent changes in the Australian pig industry have seen many smaller producers leave the industry and existing producers increase their size of operations in an attempt to remain viable. Over the last three years, the number of establishments reporting pigs has fallen 15% to 2,426 in 2004-05. In the same period, numbers of pigs have fallen 5% to 2.5 mill. largely due to the increased feed grain costs caused by the recent drought (table 14.37).


14.37 PIGS - 30 June

NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
Aust.(a)
’000
’000
’000
'000
’000
’000
'000

2001
845
557
597
438
286
22
2,748
2002
833
673
643
410
361
18
2,940
2003
729
555
663
381
309
^19
2,658
2004
^624
^547
691
^378
^291
^14
2,548
2005
^732
524
666
335
266
12
2,538

(a) Includes NT.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0).


Poultry

Poultry farming is a highly intensive industry, with the majority of poultry raised in large sheds which provide the birds with a stable environment protected from the elements. The poultry farming industry consists of two streams - meat production and egg production - both being major users of feed grains. Although the industry grew through the 1990's, there has been a 10% decline in the number of birds over the three years to 30 June 2005 (table 14.38).


14.38 POULTRY - 30 June

Chickens(a)
Other poultry


Chickens for
egg production
Meat chickens
(broilers)
Total
chickens
Ducks
Turkeys
Other
poultry
Total all
poultry
’000
’000
’000
’000
’000
’000
'000

2001
14,276
76,697
90,973
770
717
437
92,897
2002
12,858
72,739
85,597
567
584
*160
86,908
2003
12,913
70,913
83,826
^694
*772
**
85,535
2004
12,669
65,004
77,673
^953
*681
**
79,701
2005
13,175
62,728
75,903
**
*628
**
78,187

(a) Includes breeding stock.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); ABS data available on request, Agricultural Survey.


LIVESTOCK PRODUCTS

Milk

Dairying is a major Australian agricultural industry. The estimated gross value of dairy production at farm-gate prices in 2004-05 was $3,194m (table 14.39), which was a 14% increase on the previous year and represented 9% of the gross value of agricultural production.

Most dairy production occurs in high rainfall coastal fringe areas where climate and natural resources allow production to be based on year-round pasture grazing. This enables efficient, low-cost milk production. With the exception of several inland river schemes, pasture growth generally depends on natural rainfall. Feedlot-based dairying is expanding, although it remains uncommon.

Milk production rose steadily until 1999-2000. Less favourable seasonal conditions and farm exits associated with deregulation of the milk industry saw production decrease by 3% to 10,545 million litres (ML) in 2000-01, before recovering to 11,271 ML in 2001-02. Dry seasonal conditions, limiting the growth of pastures and the availability of fodder crops over the last three years have seen milk production drop to 10,125 ML in 2004-05 (table 14.39).


14.39 WHOLE MILK INTAKE BY FACTORIES, Production, use and value

Market milk
sales by
factories
Milk used in the
manufacture of
dairy products
Total
milk
production
Gross
value
ML
ML
ML
$m

2000-01
1,920
8,625
10,545
3,053
2001-02
1,909
9,362
11,271
3,717
2002-03
1,925
8,403
10,328
(a)2,795
2003-04
1,976
8,099
10,075
2,809
2004-05
2,017
8,108
10,125
3,194

(a) Excludes NT.
Source: Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0); Dairy Australia.


Average annual per person milk consumption has stabilised at around 100 litres since the mid-1980s. According to Dairy Australia data for 2004-05, Australians consumed 100 litres of milk, 11.7 kilograms of cheese and 6.2 kilograms of yoghurt per person.

In 2005-06 Australia exported dairy products valued at $2.4b (1.6% of total merchandise exports). Milk, cream and milk products (excluding butter and cheese) contributed $1.4b, while cheese and curd, and butter and other fats and oils derived from milk brought in $838m and $225m respectively.

Meat production and slaughterings

Tables 14.40 and 14.41 show details of slaughtering and meat production from abattoirs, and from commercial poultry and other slaughtering establishments. They include estimates of animals slaughtered on farms and by country butchers. The data relate only to slaughtering for human consumption and do not include animals condemned or those killed for boiling down.

Production of beef in 2005-06 decreased by 4% to 2,050,000 tonnes.

Changing patterns in both consumer demand, and sheep and lamb supply have seen production of lamb meat exceed production of mutton for each of the past seven years. In 2005-06 mutton production increased by 3% to 244,000 tonnes and lamb production increased by 8% to 382,000 tonnes.

Significant changes have taken place in the pig meat producing industry in recent years. Capital investment and corporate takeovers have seen the emergence of a few large companies producing a significant proportion of all pig meat sold in Australia. These moves, and the trend to more intensive and efficient production techniques, have seen pig meat production rise steadily since the mid-1970s when production dipped to a low of 174,000 tonnes. In 2005-06, pig meat production remained steady at 389,000 tonnes.


14.40 PRODUCTION OF MEAT

Carcass weight
Dressed weight


Beef
Veal
Mutton
Lamb
Pig
meat
Total
red meat
Chicken
meat(a)
Total
poultry(a)(b)
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t

2001-02
1,996
31
296
348
396
3,067
667
705
2002-03
2,035
38
268
329
420
3,090
690
726
2003-04
1,998
35
220
341
406
3,000
694
721
2004-05
2,133
29
237
354
389
3,142
750
791
2005-06
2,050
28
244
382
389
3,092
773
820

(a) Excludes NT and Tas.
(b) Includes other fowls, turkeys, ducks and drakes.
Source: Livestock Products, Australia (7215.0).

14.41 LIVESTOCK AND POULTRY SLAUGHTERED FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION

Cattle
Calves
Sheep
Lambs
Pigs
Chickens(a)
Other fowls(b)
and turkeys
Ducks and
drakes
mill. head
mill. head
mill. head
mill. head
mill. head
mill. head
mill. head
mill. head

2001-02
7.6
1.0
14.4
17.4
5.4
415.6
8.6
4.0
2002-03
8.1
1.1
13.7
16.9
5.7
419.2
9.2
4.1
2003-04
7.8
1.0
10.4
16.6
5.6
423.7
9.6
4.5
2004-05
8.0
0.9
11.4
17.3
5.3
437.6
10.2
4.7
2005-06
7.6
0.8
11.8
18.7
5.4
437.9
10.8
5.2

(a) Excludes NT and Tas.
(b) Comprises hens, roosters, etc.
Source: Livestock Products, Australia (7215.0).


Table 14.42 shows the gross value of livestock slaughterings over recent years. Following five years of increases, the total value of slaughterings and other disposals decreased by 7% in 2002-03. Since then, mainly due to increases in the value of cattle and calves, total value of slaughterings and other disposals has increased 13%.


14.42 GROSS VALUE OF LIVESTOCK SLAUGHTERINGS AND OTHER DISPOSALS

Cattle and
calves
Sheep and
lambs(a)
Pigs
Poultry
Total(b)
$m
$m
$m
$m
$m

2000-01
6,430.6
1,401.8
822.3
1,060.2
9,737.8
2001-02
7,142.4
2,117.6
967.7
1,174.9
11,434.5
2002-03
6,411.1
2,036.9
911.3
1,280.5
10,676.0
2003-04
6,658.8
2,038.8
878.9
1,280.8
10,896.0
2004-05
7,828.8
1,949.0
906.0
1,303.7
12,030.2

(a) Excludes the value of wool on skins.
(b) Includes value of other livestock.
Source: Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).


The largest customers for Australian beef in recent years have been United States of America, Japan and the Republic of (South) Korea. In 2005-06, Japan was the main customer for Australian beef with 403,200 tonnes purchased, 8% less than the previous year's shipment. The United States of America was Australia's second largest customer with 302,300 tonnes purchased, down 18% on the previous year. The Republic of (South) Korea was the third largest importer of Australian beef, purchasing 141,900 tonnes.

Table 14.43 shows the volume of exports of fresh, chilled or frozen meat. In 2005-06, beef was again Australia's major meat export with shipments of bone-out beef being the major component at 891,700 tonnes, 7% less than the previous year. Exports of bone-in mutton in 2005-06 increased by 5% to 107,100 tonnes while bone-in lamb exports increased 13% to a record 119,900 tonnes which surpassed the previous year's record.


14.43 EXPORTS OF FRESH, CHILLED OR FROZEN MEAT

Beef
Veal(a)
Mutton
Lamb
Pork





Bone-in
Bone-out
Bone-in
Bone-out
Bone-in
Bone-out
Bone-in
Bone-out
Meat
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t

2001-02
34.1
892.3
2.4
7.1
113.9
52.1
104.6
13.8
59.0
2002-03
37.5
894.4
3.6
6.5
109.3
52.3
87.9
14.1
62.9
2003-04
32.1
852.4
2.9
6.3
86.5
42.7
100.5
18.3
50.7
2004-05
44.6
959.4
3.3
5.8
101.7
41.8
106.8
21.7
43.5
2005-06
52.2
891.7
3.3
5.8
107.1
41.5
119.9
26.6
44.1

(a) Includes buffalo meat.
Source: Livestock Products, Australia (7215.0).


Table 14.44 shows the number, gross weight, gross value and unit value of live sheep and cattle exported for slaughter. The number of live sheep exported for slaughter in 2005-06 increased 31% to 4,247,700 following three years of declining trade. The number of live cattle exported for slaughter in 2005-06 fell 4% to 550,900 head, the lowest level in over a decade.


14.44 LIVE SHEEP AND CATTLE EXPORTS(a)
Live sheep exports
Live cattle exports


Number
Gross weight
Gross value
Unit value
Number
Gross weight
Gross value
Unit value
’000
'000 t
$’000
$
’000
'000 t
$’000
$

2001-02
6,443.2
318.0
391,705
60.79
797.0
293.5
525,535
659.41
2002-03
5,843.2
273.0
408,235
69.87
976.6
362.5
569,288
582.95
2003-04
3,842.7
188.2
266,457
69.34
581.5
192.0
317,850
546.65
2004-05
3,233.2
166.1
206,678
63.92
573.7
191.7
374,060
652.01
2005-06
4,247.7
209.5
291,453
68.61
550.9
182.2
358,359
650.46

(a) Number of live animals exported, other than pure-bred breeding animals.
Source: Livestock Products, Australia (7215.0).


Wool

Australia is the world's largest wool producer, accounting for about a quarter of total production. Wool production has been declining in Australia and the world for the past ten years. Since 1990 Australian wool production has halved, to around 520,000 tonnes in 2004-05. Almost all of Australia's wool is exported, the major markets being China, Italy, India and Taiwan.

Shorn greasy wool contains an appreciable amount of grease, dirt, vegetable matter and other material. The exact quantities of these impurities in the fleece vary with climatic and pastoral conditions, seasonal fluctuations and the breed and condition of the sheep. It is, however, the clean wool fibre that is ultimately consumed by the textile industry, and the term 'clean yield' is used to express the net wool fibre content present in greasy wool.

The gross value of wool produced in 2004-05 fell 8% to $2,195.5m (table 14.45), a little more than a third the value recorded in 1988-89 ($5.9b), the peak year in the wool boom of the 1980s.


14.45 WOOL, Production and value

Shorn wool
Other wool(a)
Total
Gross value
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
$m

2000-01
589.9
55.3
645.1
2,541.2
2001-02
536.9
50.4
587.3
2,713.2
2002-03
503.0
48.1
551.1
3,317.8
2003-04
467.5
42.0
509.5
2,396.5
2004-05
475.2
44.4
519.7
2,195.5

(a) Comprises dead and fellmongered wool, and wool exported on skins.
Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).


The total amounts of taxable wool received by brokers and purchased by dealers in recent years are shown in table 14.46. They exclude wool received by brokers on which tax had already been paid by other dealers (private buyers) or brokers.


14.46 TAXABLE WOOL RECEIVALS

Receivals

Brokers
Dealers
Total
Brokers as proportion
of total receivals
'000 t
'000 t
'000 t
%

2001-02
437.0
99.9
536.9
81.4
2002-03
390.6
112.5
503.0
77.7
2003-04
384.2
83.3
467.5
82.2
2004-05
383.7
91.5
475.2
80.7
2005-06
383.2
103.6
486.8
78.7

Source: Livestock Products, Australia (7215.0).


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