7501.0 - Value of Principal Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia, Preliminary, 1996-97  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 07/10/1997   
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October 7, 1997
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
Lower prices led to reduction in gross value of agricultural production for 1996-97

Preliminary estimates on the gross value of Australian agricultural production during 1996-97, released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today, show a decrease from 1995-96 of 0.8 per cent to $27,242.9m.

The estimates have been compiled using the latest production data available from the Agricultural Census of 31 March 1997.

The statistics show falling average prices resulted in decreases in the value of barley, which fell 6.2 per cent to $1,197.4m and of sugar cane for crushing, which fell 7.0 per cent to $1,146.6m, despite increases in production for both of these commodities.

Reductions in the area sown resulted in lower production and hence value, for many other crops, including oats, down 27.2 per cent to $210.6m and sorghum, down 45.2 per cent to $175.7m.

Increases did occur, however, in the value of some crops such as wheat, up 10.1 per cent to a record $4,739.3m, cotton, up 9.2 per cent to $1,106.7m and rice, up 32.7 per cent $299.8m.

The gross value of all livestock slaughterings increased by 0.3 per cent to $6,210.4m, reflecting increases in the numbers of sheep and lambs, and poultry slaughtered during 1996-97.

Although production has increased, falling average prices have resulted in decreases in the gross values for milk, down 3.0 percent to $2,903.2m and for wool, down 1.0 percent to $2,522.4m.

New South Wales, Queensland and Tasmania were the only States which recorded an increase in total gross value of production, with New South Wales, accounting for 28.4 per cent of gross value of Australian agricultural production.

Further details are in Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia 1996-97 (cat. no. 7501.0) available from ABS bookshops.