​Media Release

Farm production remains above average​

11 December 2018

  • Latest Commodities Report shows Australian farm production is still above average
  • Gross value of farm production is forecast to be $58 billion, down by 3 per cent
  • The value of crops to fall while livestock and livestock products forecast to rise ​

The latest Agricultural Commodities Report shows the value of farm production is forecast to remain above the ten year average despite drought in parts of Australia.

​Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud said the Australian Bureau of Agricultural Resource Economics and Sciences' (ABARES) Commodities Report shows the value of farm production was forecast to drop slightly.

"The value of our farm production is predicted to drop 3 per cent on last year, to $58 billion in 2018-19," Minister Littleproud said.

"This is down only 6 per cent on our record breaking year in 2016-17.

​"This would still see the value of this year's production at more than the 10-year average of $56 billion.

"It's important to remember, speaking broadly, agriculture is doing well overall and has a bright future.

"Imagine how well we'll go when it rains.

"The report reminds us agricultural exports will be supported by the Trans-Pacific Partnership from 30 December 2018.

"This historic agreement will give Aussie exporters a competitive advantage over countries not part of the agreement.

"Of course, drought in parts of the country has seen many farmers to use wheat for feed instead of export, and farm profitability is expected to be lower nationally in 2018–19 than the previous two years.

"The Coalition Government recently announced the Future Drought Fund to create a new, secure, predictable revenue stream dedicated to drought resilience, preparedness and recovery.

"The Fund will start with $3.9 billion—growing to $5 billion—and fund a wide range of drought resilience projects and equip our farmers with the tools to manage and sustain their businesses through periods of drought."

Fast Facts:

  • The gross value of Australian farm production is forecast to decrease 3 per cent to $58 billion in 2018–19, 6 per cent lower than the record in 2016–17 but above the 10-year average of $56 billion.
  • In 2018–19, export earnings for agricultural commodities are forecast to decline by 7 per cent to $46 billion.
  • The value of crop production is forecast to decline by 7 per cent to $29 billion, driven by substantially lower production of crops, including cotton, wheat, canola and chickpeas.
  • The value of livestock and livestock products are forecast to increase 2 per cent to $30 billion. Higher cattle and sheep turn-off and strong prices for lamb and wool are forecast to support the value of production.