ABARE Cut Australian Wheat Estimate

The Australian Bureau of Agricultural & Resource Economics (ABARE) have lowered their 2009 winter wheat production estimate from 22.7 MMT to 22.0 MMT, broadly in line with other analyst's estimates which range around 21-22 MMT.

“Conditions deteriorated over spring in Western Australia, Queensland and, in particular, central west and southern New South Wales," say ABARE.

"Winter crop production in New South Wales has been revised down significantly from our earlier forecasts.

"Cropping regions in Western Australia were affected by lack of rain toward the end of spring and, as a result, production has been revised down from earlier expectations,” they add.

Barley production is estimated at around 8.3 million tonnes, up 8% from last season. Canola output is estimated at 1.8 million tonnes in 2009-10, which is around 5% lower than 2008-09 production.

Summer sorghum planted area is forecast to be around 637,000 hectares, 15.5% down compared with last season’s 754,000 ha.

Rice area is forecast to increase significantly in 2009-10, to 18,600 ha, compared with 8,000 ha in 2008-09. Cotton plantings are forecast to increase 24% to 203,000 ha.