Grain production expected to hit 10-year average

POSITIVE YET SCEPTICAL: Grain Producers SA chief executive Brad Perry said the predicted figures for the 2024-25 grain production season would depend on winter rainfall. Picture: FILE

DESPITE a recent spat of dry conditions, the 2024-25 grain season is expected to reach a total of 8.5 million tonnes as seeding begins.

The total figure indicated it would be close to the 10-year average for grain production, which was due to the anticipated reduction in pasture area for sheep production.

The statistics came from the Crop and Pasture Report – Seeding Intensions which was produced by the Department of Primary Industries and Regions South Australia (PIRSA).

Grain Producers SA (GPSA) chief executive officer Brad Perry said the report estimates may be “understated or overstated” which depended on the amount of winter rainfall for grain producers to begin seed germination.

“A recent GPSA survey showed more than 60 per cent of grain producers sowed in April or earlier and there’s no doubt that for many growers, original plans on what to sow may have changed due to the dry start, particularly for canola,” Mr Perry said.

“Grain producers remain hopeful of a saturating rain in the coming weeks to really kick the season off and we are still anticipating strong returns if that occurs.”

Seeding intention for lentil production has seen a 38 per cent increase across the state, while there have been noticeable reductions in the planned sowing of chickpeas, field peas and lupins.

Additionally, there has been a gradual reduction in barley area with a corresponding increase in wheat area.

Expectations are consistent for the area sown to hay.