In Focus: Summer Crops – February 2015

Forecast production across summer crops remains divergent. Cotton is likely to see a significant fall in price year on year, as changes to Chinese subsidy arrangements and cheaper synthetic fibres eat into demand, outweighing the impact of reduced Australian supply.

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  • Forecast production across summer crops remains divergent. While grain sorghum has benefitted from timely summer rainfall in Queensland, reduced irrigation water allocations have seen a fall in area planted to cotton and rice. Our headline grain sorghum estimate shows a significant increase in production, however this largely reflects a poor season in 2013-14. We expect grain sorghum yields to be around average (10 year) to slightly below average.
  • Prices across major summer crops are also mixed. Cotton is likely to see a significant fall in price year on year, as changes to Chinese subsidy arrangements and cheaper synthetic fibres eat into demand, outweighing the impact of reduced Australian supply. Grain sorghum is forecast to fall only slightly in 2014-15 as a falling Australian dollar cushions some of the impact of falling global grain prices.

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