BROADACRE CROPS, Australia, year ended 30 June 2016
Change in production since
Change in area since
Change in yield since
Wheat for grain
Oats for grain
Barley for grain
Maize for grain
Rice for grain
Triticale for grain
Cotton lint (b)
Sugar cane cut for crushing
(a) Percentage change since 2014-15 is calculated using estimates with an EVAO of $40,000 or greater
(b) Includes irrigated and non-irrigated cotton
Nationally, wheat production fell by 5% to 22 million tonnes in 2015-16. Warm, dry conditions in Southern Australia, particularly in South Australia (down 18%), Victoria (down 29%) and areas of Western Australia (down 3%), saw large decreases in production. The area planted to wheat nationally decreased by 8%, down to 11 million hectares.
Total oat production increased by 14% to 1.3 million tonnes, with yields rising to 1.6 tonnes per hectare (an 11% increase since 2014-15). Growing conditions in eastern states impacted the quality of crops for milling grade oats. The briefer growing period of oats attracted farmers who have been dealing with ongoing dry conditions and the continuing dry lead in to spring.
Favourable growing conditions and water access have resulted in an increase in cotton production from 2014-15. Nationally, cotton production increased 32% to 551 million kilograms, and the area planted to cotton increased by 43% to 280 thousand hectares.
Total sorghum production decreased by 16% (to 1.8 million tonnes) in 2015-16. Grain sorghum production in Queensland decreased by 25% to (1.2 million tonnes) with strong regional differences resulting from mixed weather conditions. As a summer crop, heavily susceptible to overly warm conditions, the dry and hot weather in central Queensland yielded poor results. Southern Queensland and New South Wales fared better, with good growing conditions and higher yields. New South Wales produced 604,000 tonnes of sorghum, 7% up on last year despite a 12% decrease in area planted.
Production of barley increased by 6% in Australia to 9.0 million tonnes. Timely rainfall and good conditions along with greater area planted (up 3%) produced good yields and increased production in New South Wales (up by 39%). Victoria experienced the lowest yield nationally, at 1.3 tonnes per hectare, predominantly driven by dry conditions, consistent with yields for winter crops in Victoria. The dry conditions seen in Victoria also extended through to South Australia and impacted the crop there with slightly lower yields and farmers planting a smaller crop than previous years (down 5%).
The scope for the 2015-16 Agricultural Census was all agricultural businesses with an Estimated Value of Agricultural Operations (EVAO) of $40,000 or greater. This is a change from previous ABS rural environment and agricultural collections, where a scope of EVAO of $5,000 or greater was used. This change was foreshadowed in February 2016 in Agricultural Census: Nature and Content, 2015-16 (cat. no 7100.1).
The 2014-15 estimates presented in this publication have been revised to use the new scope of $40,000 or greater.
For more information about EVAO and the change in scope, refer to the Explanatory Notes within this release.
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