Media Release: Agritalks, South Australia

Thursday 30 January, 2014

SA harvest on track to be third largest

South Australia’s grain harvest this season is on track to be the State’s third largest on record, according to the 2013-14 Crop and Pasture Report released today by Primary Industries and Regions South Australia (PIRSA).

Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries, Gail Gago, said that harvest was complete across most of the State, with Kangaroo Island and the South East expected to complete their harvest by the end of January.

“The final estimate for this year places the final crop at 8.6 million tonnes, with an estimated farm gate value of around $2.1 billion and an export value of $2.8 billion,” Ms Gago said.

“Due to a dry spring, and some wind and frost damage in parts of the State, this is slightly down from our hopes of 8.9 million tonnes but nonetheless represents a significant harvest.”

The previous largest crops were 9.36 million tonnes in 2001 and the 10.34 million tonne record of 2010.

Dave Lewis, PIRSA Grains Account Manager, said that yields across the State were average in the Murray Mallee and above average elsewhere, despite the dry, warm spring.

“Today’s Crop and Pasture Report indicates a near-bumper crop for the 2013-14 harvest,” Mr Lewis said.

“Value is down slightly from last year due to declining prices in recent months, as well as the impact of lower protein and some smaller size grain in some regions.

“The hot finish to the season increased the percentage of small grain or screenings.

“Earlier districts, including the Eyre and Western Districts, the Upper and Lower North, and the Murray and Mallee Districts, completed harvest by early December.

“Showery weather and several severe fire danger days slowed harvest in many parts of the State including the Mid North and Yorke Peninsula.

“Harvest on Kangaroo Island and the South East will not be completed until mid to late January.

Compiled by Philippa Clark, Business Services Consultant, Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA),