Broadacre crops top $28.9 billion in 2022-23

Media Release

Key broadacre crops hit a value of more than $28.9 billion in the 2022-23 financial year, according to data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Rob Walter, ABS head of agriculture statistics, said: “It was a bumper year for wheat and canola in particular, with 41.2 million tonnes of wheat sold worth $13.5 billion and 8.9 million tonnes of canola sold worth $6.6 billion.”

Horticulture crops (including wine grapes) had a combined local value of $17.2 billion. Fruit was the largest contributor to this with a local value of $7.3 billion followed by vegetables with a local value of $5.8 billion.

The value of livestock disposals declined one per cent to $23.3 billion in 2022-23. Cattle was the largest contributor at $13.9 billion, a drop of 2.4 per cent while poultry bucked the trend, increasing by 15.6 per cent to $3.6 billion.

At 30 June 2023 there were 29.9 million head of cattle, a 4 per cent increase on the previous year.

“This is the largest cattle herd in the past five years as rainfall and favourable conditions supported farmers rebuilding their herds,” Mr Walter said.

Modernising ABS agriculture statistics delivers new regional insights

The ABS is modernising our agriculture statistics by making greater use of existing data sources.

These sources, including satellite derived crop mapping and administrative levy payer data support greater regional detail which highlights the regions behind Australian agriculture. For example, the data showed that Morawa in Western Australia had the highest production of wheat at 2.1 million tonnes.

Western Australia also had the highest producing regions for canola and barley, with Esperance Surrounds producing 538,000 tonnes of canola and Kulin producing 1.4 million tonnes of barley in 2022-23.

“This regional detail was also available for some horticulture statistics and showed that Bundaberg was the avocado and macadamia capital of Australia in 2022-23,” Mr Walter said.

One in every five avocados (19 per cent) was grown in Bundaberg Surrounds (South), which produced 21.5 thousand tonnes of avocados, while Bundaberg Surrounds (North) produced 11 thousand tonnes of macadamias (23 per cent of total Australian production).

New partnerships reduce time farmers spend on surveys

Partnerships between industry, academia and government have been a fundamental part of the modernisation of agriculture statistics. This collaboration has helped to identify data sources and refine new methods to produce trusted statistics.

“These partnerships with industry experts have enabled the ABS to produce agriculture statistics without conducting an annual farm survey,” Mr Walter said.

“Replacing the annual survey with existing data sources has reduced the time Australian farmers collectively spend answering surveys by an average of 20,000 hours each year.”

The ABS thanks our new partners and Australian farmers for working with us as we continue to modernise Australian agricultural statistics.

Media notes

  • Value refers to local value which is the farm gate value that farmers receive for their products. This is lower than the gross value which includes transport and marketing costs. 
  • Livestock values presented refer to local value of disposals (animals slaughtered), while livestock numbers refer to stock on holding at 30 June 2023.
  • Regions referred to are Australian Statistical Geography Standard, Statistical Areas Level 2.
  • New methods mean that comparisons with past years data for broadacre and horticulture crops are not recommended. 
  • These statistics are published in three new releases:
  • When reporting ABS data you must attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.
  • For media requests and interviews, contact the ABS Media Team via (8.30am-5pm Mon-Fri).
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