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Agriculture Asia Biodiesel

Australia forecasts canola output at four year high

Australian canola farmers are on track to deliver their best harvest since 2013-2014, with output in the current marketing year tipped to hit 3.6mn t, up nearly 25% YoY, according to the government’s latest winter crop quarterly update.

Australian canola output peaked at 4.14mn t in 2012-2013 before falling back below the 4mn t mark for the next two years running. Australian oilseed producers earlier this month predicted a 3.4mn t total for the harvest. Exports last year consumed 2.6mn t of the Australian canola harvest.

Australian wheat output also suffered from 2011-2012 onwards, dropping from 29.9mn t that year to just 23.7mn t in 2014-2015. Output this year is expected to show a stronger rebound than canola, jumping to over 28mn t this year.

australia-canola-production

“This forecast production will only be achieved if spring rainfall is sufficient and timely, especially in regions of Western Austraila that had average to below average winter rainfall,” government statisticians cautioned.

Although the government still expects Victoria to nearly double its canola output to 610,000t this year thanks to improved acreage, disease infestations due to waterlogging meanwhile have emerged as a potential threat.

Earlier infestations of Blackleg fungus have complicated Australian exports to China after the Chinese imposed import restrictions. European offtake for biodiesel usage however still dominates Australian canola exports, taking around 60% of the expected total for 2016/2017. A second spectacularly poor European rapeseed harvest is increasing the pressure on overseas sources of supply to make up the shortfall as  fuel blenders across a slew of EU member states prepare for increased biofuel compliance mandates next year.

MS – 13/09/2016

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