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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


21 February 2013

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 21 February 2013Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 21 February 2013


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of Key Issues

  • During the past week heavy rainfall has again fallen along the east coast of Queensland resulting in localised flash flooding and damage to roads and other infrastructure.
  • Further heavy rainfall is forecast for north-east New South Wales over the coming days. If this eventuates, it may result in further flooding, particularly in those catchments that received heavy rainfall in late January 2013 associated with ex-tropical cyclone ‘Oswald’.
  • Rainfall across much of western Queensland this week is likely to improve pasture growth and ease grazing pressure for livestock enterprises across the region.
  • A wetter than normal autumn is more likely for much of South Australia, western New South Wales, southwest Queensland and north west Western Australia (Bureau of Meteorology Seasonal Rainfall Outlook, 20 February 2013).
  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin have decreased by 288 gigalitres this week and are at 69 per cent of total capacity.
  • The 2012–13 summer crop season has been less than favourable to date with heatwave conditions in early to mid-January, and until recently, generally very much below average rainfall across the major summer cropping regions.
  • In the latest edition of Australian Crop Report, released on 12 February 2013, ABARES forecast total summer crop production to fall by 13 per cent in 2012–13 to around 4.8 million tonnes. If realised, this will be around 14 per cent higher than the average of 4.2 million tonnes over the five years to 2011–12.
  • Total winter crop production in 2012–13 is estimated to have fallen by 22 per cent in 2012–13 to be around 35.8 million tonnes.
  • The saleyard prices of lamb increased in the eastern states (including South Australia) in the week ending 15 February 2013 with the largest rise occurring in New South Wales where the lamb indicator price (18-22kg fat score 2-4) rose by around 3 per cent to 381 cents per kilogram.

Climate

Notable Events

  • During the past week heavy rainfall has again fallen along the east coast of Queensland resulting in localised flash flooding and damage to roads and other infrastructure. Following these falls there is a minor to moderate flood warning current for the Mary River, in south east Queensland. Meanwhile, flooding associated with rainfall from ex-tropical cyclone ‘Oswald’ is receding to minor flood levels in most affected river systems.
  • Rainfall across much of western Queensland this week is likely to improve pasture conditions and ease grazing pressure for livestock enterprises across the region. Producers are reported to have been actively destocking since November 2012.
  • Rainfall up to 300 millimetres is forecast for the northern New South Wales coastal region and across the north of Western Australia and the Northern Territory. If this rainfall eventuates, it may result in further flooding and damage to infrastructure, particularly in those catchments that received heavy rainfall in late January 2013 associated with ex-tropical cyclone ‘Oswald’.
  • Recent climate conditions in South Australia have reportedly been favourable for the ripening of wine grapes, with producers predicting high quality fruit.
  • A wetter than normal autumn is more likely for much of South Australia, western New South Wales, south west Queensland and north west Western Australia. A drier than normal autumn is more likely for Tasmania, south west Western Australia and southern Victoria (Bureau of Meteorology Seasonal Rainfall Outlook, 20 February 2013).
  • Daytime temperatures over the next three months are likely to be warmer than average in the west of Western Australia and across the northern half of Queensland and the Northern Territory. Night-time temperatures are likely to be below average throughout most of South Australia and western New South Wales, and throughout all of Victoria and Tasmania (Bureau of Meteorology Seasonal Temperature Outlook, 20 February 2013).

Rainfall this Week

For the week ending 20 February 2013, rainfall of between 25–100 millimetres (mm) was recorded across most of the Tropics and Queensland, with falls of between 15–50 mm extending into western New South Wales. Queensland’s east coast recorded falls above 200 mm in several places. The highest rainfall total for the week was 366 mm at Rainbow Beach just south of Fraser Island in Queensland. For further information, go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

Rainfall for the Week Ending 20 February 2013

©Commonwealth of Australia 2013, Australia Bureau of Meteorology
Issued: 20/02/2013

Commodities

Production and Commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$331 a tonne in the week ending 19 February 2013, compared with US$338 a tonne in the previous week.
  • The world coarse grains indicator price (US no. 2 yellow corn, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$301 a tonne for the week ending 20 February 2013, largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$637 a tonne in the week ending 19 February 2013, compared with US$649 a tonne in the previous week.
  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged US89.7 cents a pound in the week ending 20 February 2013, largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, no. 11 contract) averaged US18.1 cents a pound in the week ending 20 February 2013, largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • Data from the Mexican Agriculture Ministry shows the country’s cumulative sugar production in 2012–13 (October to mid February) to be 2.9 million tonnes, around 32 per cent more than produced the same period in 2011–12.
  • The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average price of whole milk powder increased to US$3654 a tonne on 19 February 2013 compared with US$3468 a tonne on 5 February 2013. The anhydrous milk fat price increased by 3.8 per cent to US$3635 a tonne. Cheese and skim milk powder prices increased by around 1 per cent.
  • The 2012–13 summer crop season has been less than favourable to date with heatwave conditions in early to mid-January, and until recently, generally very much below average rainfall across the major summer cropping regions.
  • In the latest edition of Australian Crop Report, released on 12 February 2013, ABARES forecast total summer crop production to fall by 13 per cent in 2012–13 to around 4.8 million tonnes. If realised, this will be around 14 per cent higher than the average of 4.2 million tonnes over the five years to 2011–12.
  • Grain sorghum production is forecast to decrease by 23 per cent in 2012–13 to 1.7 million tonnes and production of cotton lint and seed is forecast to fall each by 21 per cent to 945 000 tonnes and 1.3 million tonnes, respectively. In contrast, rice production is forecast to rise by 15 per cent to around 1.1 million tonnes.
  • Total winter crop production in 2012–13 is estimated to have fallen by 22 per cent in 2012–13 to be around 35.8 million tonnes. This estimate represents a marginal upward revision from ABARES December 2012 forecast of 35.1 million tonnes.
  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) averaged $549 a tonne in the week ending 20 February 2013, compared with $541 a tonne in the previous week.
  • Changes to wholesale prices of fruit were mixed in the week ending 16 February 2013. The wholesale prices of avocado (hass), banana (cavendish), and blueberry were lower than the previous week while the prices of pineapple (smoothleaf), strawberry and watermelon (seedless) were higher.
  • Changes to wholesale prices of vegetables were also mixed in the week ending 16 February 2013. The wholesale prices of beans (round stringless), broccoli, cauliflower and tomato (field gourmet) were lower than the previous week while the prices of iceberg lettuce and pumpkin (grey bulk) were higher.
  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price of wool fell by around 1 per cent in the week ending 14 February 2013 to 1117 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at sale decreased by 8 per cent compared with the previous week.
  • The Queensland young cattle indicator price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) increased by around 1 per cent to 334 cents a kilogram in the week ending 15 February 2013, which is around 18 per cent lower than at the same time in 2012.
  • Saleyard lamb prices rose in the eastern states (including South Australia) in the week ending 15 February 2013. The lamb indicator price (18-22kg fat score 2-4) rose by around 3 per cent in New South Wales, around 2 per cent in South Australia and around 1 per cent in Victoria to average 381cents per kilogram, 352 cents per kilogram and 356 cents per kilogram, respectively. In contrast, the indicator price declined by around 10 per cent in Western Australia to average 294 cents per kilogram. Total saleyard throughput declined by 4 per cent compared with the previous sale week.

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February 2013

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