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Senior Advisor

Australia wheat production may be caving in.

First receipts of grain in Western Australia are disappointing and a comment appeared to expect not a lot better. WA is the major exporting area. This all sounds so familiar to me as the exact same issues hit us in the PNW. The USDA dropped our production 20% AFTER harvest. It's still too high. That is a familiar comment on the USDA about Australia at the moment.

 

This situation directly affects the PNW as Aussie wheat is our most direct competition. We're at $6.72 coast right now.

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Australia wheat production may be caving in.

The weather bureau's latest drought statement confirms dry conditions that have plagued north-eastern Australia are creeping further south, reducing crop yields in grain growing regions.

While areas of Queensland and northern New South Wales have had some of their driest two-year periods on record, long-term rainfall deficiencies are also developing in western Victoria, south-eastern South Australia, parts of Tasmania and Western Australia.

 

The weather bureau's Dr Andrew Watkins says September rainfall was well below average in parts of southern Australia.

"Places further south, particularly over the last several months, have seen a lot of large high pressure systems basically keeping the rain away and keeping the fronts away, so that's led to deficiencies in rainfall, particularly over grain growing areas of Victoria and into parts of Western Australia as well," Dr Watkins said.

Ian McClelland, who farms north of Birchip in Victoria's Mallee region, says after a good autumn break, winter and spring rain was disappointing.

"There was virtually no rain in August, no rain in September and virtually no rain in October, so far," Mr McClelland said.

"Crops just really had to fend for themselves, on their subsoil moisture. A lot of our wheat on our heavier country has sort of tipped and burnt off.

"I'm expecting yields across the board about 30 per cent of average."

Ron Storey, of Australian Crop Forecasters, predicts the overall national grain crop could be down about 10 per cent on last year's harvest total of 43 million tonnes.

The wheat crop is also likely to be lower than had been anticipated.

"In early September, we were at 24 million tonnes. We're slipping below that.

"We haven't put our October forecast just yet, but we would say the potential is there, depending on what happens for the balance of October, to lose up to 10 per cent. We could see a worst case scenario of getting down to about 22 (million tonnes)."

A national wheat crop of 22 million tonnes would be in line with the long-term average, but down on recent harvests.

"The five-year average for the wheat crop at the moment is around 25 million tonnes. The ten-year average is 21 (million tonnes)," Mr Storey said.

"That's a 15 to 20 per cent shift in what the average crop is when you look at those two periods of time.

"I think what that tells us is that we've actually had five quite unusually very good seasons Australia-wide up until now and perhaps we are experiencing some of those very, very dry conditions this year and we are at a localised level compared to what we've seen for the past ten years."

As well as being down on volume, this year's crop is also likely to be well down on value, with big harvests in the northern hemisphere pushing global prices down about 10 per cent on what growers achieved last year.

"Whilst crop production might be down something in the order of 10 per cent, compared to last year, total crop value is more likely to be down 20 per cent because of the drop in price values as well," Mr Storey said.

"So the wheat crop, probably between $7.5 and $8 billion last year, this year (could be) closer to $6 billion."

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Re: Australia wheat production may be caving in.

GRAINS analyst Malcolm Bartholomaeus estimates that about 20 per cent of the state's yield potential has been lost since the start of September following dry conditions and hot, windy days.

At the start of September, ABARES and PIRSA posted similar production estimates for SA of 7.59 million tonnes and 7.62mt respectively.

"Looking at the ABARES figures from the beginning of September, I think the state has lost about 20pc of its yield potential since then," Mr Bartholomaeus, AvantAgri, said.

"And I think we're in danger of losing another 8-9pc if October continues with the weather we've had."

Mr Bartholomaeus said Monday's dry and extremely windy conditions, with gusts of more than 110 kilometres an hour in some areas, certainly did not help.

"Some parts of the state, in the northern areas, such as Orroroo and parts of the Riverland - like Loxton - got a good rainfall event the week before last, but the rest of the state didn't get it," he said.

"Earlier districts may also have fared better than the rest of the state."

While conditions had been disappointing, prices were more positive.

"Prices have been edging up for most commodities," Mr Bartholomaeus said.

"Feed barley is at its highest level since June and wheat prices are sitting just above last year's harvest price."

Mr Bartholomaeus said canola had come off its "bottom level" and was sitting at about $15/t to $16/t above its lowest price.

"These price rises weren't really expected," he said.

"It's coming off the back of the dry weather in Australia and declining production prospects.

"We're hoping we've seen the lows in the market at this stage."

Mr Bartholmaeus said prices being offered in SA were now equalling those offered on the east coast.

"These prices are sending a signal not to send grain east because it's needed for export out of SA," he said.

On the Yorke Peninsula, hopes have dropped for well above-average yields because late winter and early spring rains failed to follow through.

 

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Australia wheat production may be caving in.

on my patch weve had between 6/10ths and 8/10ths of inch since end of july.

 

 

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Australia wheat production may be caving in.

the prices are per metric tonne and the different prices across the table are different port zones in south australia.

 

the first price on each is my port zone deduct around $40 per tonne and thats my farm gate price , have to freight to elevator, then recieval charges then frieght from elevator to port, plus a few levies taken off as well.

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Australia wheat production may be caving in.

"The world is awash in wheat"

Most of the plains wheat was at 40% of
Normal (if you were in a good spot) this
year........

""The market is always right""

Usually quoted by someone making money in the
Market
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