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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


03 October 2013

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 3 October 2013Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 3 October 2013


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of key issues

  • Harvesting of winter crops has commenced in northern cropping regions of Western Australia and South Australia, this is a full fortnight earlier than normal.

  • Rainfall during September 2013 was variable across the continent. Most of Western Australia received above average rainfall, while much of the remainder of Australia saw average to below average September rainfall.

  • September 2013 was Australia’s warmest September on record. Australia’s record for warmest 12-month period has also been broken for a second consecutive month. This continues a sequence of warmer-than-average months for Australia since June 2012.

  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin decreased this week by 291 gigalitre (GL) and are at 83 per cent of total capacity.

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$325 a tonne in the week ending 1 October 2013, compared with US$312 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US17.7 cents a pound in the week ending 2 October 2013, around 2 per cent higher than in the previous week.

  • Australian beef and veal exports totalled 95 000 tonnes (shipped weight) in September 2013, 19 per cent higher than the same time last year. Increased exports to the United States, China and the Middle East more than offset lower exports to Australia’s largest market, Japan.

Climate

Notable events

  • Harvesting of winter crops has commenced in northern cropping regions of Western Australia and South Australia, this is a full fortnight earlier than normal. Early indications suggest higher than expected grain yield particularly in Western Australia.

  • During the past week a series of cold fronts swept across southern Australia bringing strong winds and rainfall to south-west Western Australia, Victoria and Tasmania. Numerous severe weather warnings and sheep grazier’s alerts were issued across south-east Australia, with the inclement weather increasing the risk of losses of sheep and lambs exposed to these conditions.

  • Meanwhile, the recent windy conditions have adversely affected some early sown canola crops on Western Australia’s south coast. Strong winds have reportedly spread thousands of hectares of swathed canola. The wind damage is likely to result in some additional harvest costs, with some uncertainty as to the level of seed loss resulting from shedding.

  • Recent heavy rainfall across northern Tasmania is affecting agricultural production opportunities in some areas. The repeated inundation has reportedly caused access issues, resulting in late planting of this year’s poppy crop. Only half of the expected area has been planted with the remainder yet to be sown.

  • Rainfall during September 2013 was variable across the continent. Most of Western Australia received above average rainfall, while much of the remainder of Australia saw average to below average September rainfall. Parts of the tropical north, central Australia, northern Tasmania and south-eastern and inland New South Wales recorded above average monthly rainfall.

  • September 2013 day-time temperatures were up to 4 degrees above average across much of eastern and central Australia, with regions up to 6 degrees above average in central Australia and southern Queensland. Night-time temperatures during September were above average across much of the country and below average across the far north.

  • September 2013 was Australia’s warmest September on record. The national average temperature for September was +2.75 °C above the long-term (1961–1990) average, which also sets a record for Australia’s largest positive anomaly for any monthly mean temperature. Australia’s record for warmest 12-month period has also been broken for a second consecutive month. This continues a sequence of warmer-than-average months for Australia since June 2012.

Rainfall this week

For the week ending 2 October 2013 rainfall was mainly recorded in the south-west of Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and south-east Queensland, with isolated storms around Alice Springs and Wyndham. The highest recorded rainfall total for the week was 179 millimetres at Mount Read in western Tasmania. For further information, go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

Rainfall for the week ending 2 October 2013

©Commonwealth of Australia 2013, Australian Bureau of Meteorology        Issued: 02/10/2013

Commodities

Production and commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$325 a tonne in the week ending 1 October 2013, compared with US$312 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world barley indicator price (France, free on board Rouen) averaged US$249 a tonne for the week ending 1 October 2013, compared with US$242 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$499 a tonne in the week ending 30 September 2013, compared with US$497 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) averaged $474 a tonne in the week ending 30 September 2013, compared with $485 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged US 92 cents a pound in the week ending 2 October 2013, around 1 per cent higher than in the previous week.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US17.7 cents a pound in the week ending 2 October 2013, around 2 per cent higher than in the previous week.

  • According to the India Meteorological Department, the 2013 monsoon season (June to September) delivered 6 per cent more rainfall than average, enhancing the prospects for bumper crop production in the 2013-14 season.

  • Wholesale prices of selected fruit were generally lower in the week ending 28 September 2013. Wholesale prices of avocado (hass), banana (cavendish), blueberry, pineapple (smoothleaf) and watermelon (seedless) were lower, while strawberry were higher than the previous week.

  • The changes to wholesale prices of selected vegetables were mixed in the week ending 28 September 2013. Wholesale prices for tomato (field gourmet) were higher, while beans (round) and iceberg lettuce were lower than the previous week. For most other vegetables prices remained largely unchanged compared to the previous week.

  • The Queensland young cattle indicator price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) increased by 5 per cent in the week ending 27 September 2013 to average 321 cents a kilogram. Young cattle prices in New South Wales fell by 6 per cent and 4 per cent in Victoria to average 341 cents and 359 cents a kilogram, respectively.

  • Australian beef and veal exports totalled 95 000 tonnes (shipped weight) in September 2013, 19 per cent higher than the same time last year. Increased exports to the United States, China and the Middle East more than offset lower exports to Australia’s largest market, Japan.

  • Saleyard lamb prices fell in most states in the week ending 27 September 2013. The largest fall occurred in New South Wales where the lamb indicator price (18–22 kilogram fat score 2–4) fell by 8 per cent to average 434 cents a kilogram. In South Australia and Victoria, the indicator price fell by around 1 per cent to average 441 cents and 426 cents a kilogram, respectively. In contrast, the indicator price rose by 2 per cent in Western Australia to average 384 cents a kilogram.

  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price for wool rose by 2 per cent in the week ending 26 September 2013 to 1097 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at auction was 4 per cent lower, compared with the previous sale.

  • The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average price of skim milk powder increased to US$4491 a tonne on 1 October 2013, compared with US$4330 a tonne on 17 September 2013. Over the same period, prices for whole milk powder, cheese and anhydrous milk fat increased by around 2 per cent to reach US$5208 a tonne, US$4389 a tonne and US$5062 a tonne, respectively.

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