Agribusiness & Food

SA grain harvest second-best in state’s history


The 2020-21 South Australian crop harvest is the second most lucrative crop on record in the state’s history, reaching $2.5 billion in farm gate value from 9.14 million tonnes.

The latest SA Government Crop and Pasture Report found the $2.5 billion farm gate value is only second to the 2010-11 $2.7 billion record value crop.

It also found grain quality across the state was above average with more grain than average meeting premium grade specifications for wheat and barley.

The season’s crop was also the seventh largest on record for area, measuring in at around 4 million acres sown.

Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister David Basham said the final production estimate for the 2020-21 growing season is 16 per cent above the long-term average.

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“The 2020-21 harvest was a winner for the state’s economy and much needed for our farmers following years of drought,” Basham said.

“It is a credit to our farming regions that continually produce bumper crops on marginal land with minimum rainfall.

“The second highest farm gate value on record in South Australia for the 2020-21 crop demonstrates the commitment by our farmers to produce the best they can with the cards they are dealt.”

The report found that while growth rates of pastures increased with the wetter spring conditions, pasture production was less than normal resulting in livestock being moved onto stubble in mixed farming areas.

In pastoral areas the wet late winter/spring conditions improved feed and refilled water sources allowing restocking.

“Farmers are waiting anxiously for opening rains to get the 2021-22 season cropping program off to a good start,” Basham said.

“Farmers will have the opportunity to sow genetically modified canola seed in South Australia for the first time this Autumn following the removal of the 16-year moratorium on the state’s mainland.”

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