Despite farmers battling a late-season deluge, the agriculture sector is on track for a record-breaking year, with a predicted gross production value of 78 billion. The forecast 5.4 billion more than what the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences predicted just a few months ago, lifting off the back of exceptional seasonal conditions and a surge in world commodity prices. ABARES Agricultural commodities December quarterly found the value of agricultural exports was forecast to hit a record 61 billion.
Meanwhile, production was expected to increase year -on – year for every major livestock commodity and almost every major crop commodity – with farmers forecast to produce the largest volume ever. ABARES executive director Jared Greenville said the ”unprecedented” rise was due to Australia enjoying an extraordinary combination of favourable conditions and 30- year price highs. It would be the first time in at least half a century that production will increase for so many products at the same time.
Moreover, if these forecasts are realised, 2021-22 will see the largest total volume to agricultural commodities Australia has ever produced. Prices are also at multi-year highs for many agricultural commodities. Hence, the great season was in stark contrast to the poor seasons key overseas competitors had.
‘Presently, there is uncertainty how long prices will remain at these levels – and supply chain disruptions, higher fertiliser prices and heavy rainfall domestically will continue to be watchpoints. This forecast accounts for the unfortunately timed substantial rainfall and localised flooding in east coast growing regions during November. Moreover, this will delay harvests and result in some crop losses, but this is unlikely to reduce national harvest tonnage.
Article by: Hari Yellina (Orchard Tech)