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Insights November 2020

9 November 2020 |Horticulture
The November update provides an analysis of production and pricing trends for Australian horticulture producers.

Overview

  • Bananas are expected to see strong increases in yield and volume thanks to fantastic growing conditions throughout the winter months.
  • Broccoli prices remain well below the three-year average following excellent growing conditions and reduced export demand.
  • Total table grape production is estimated to reach a record 240,000 tonnes this season, an increase of 15,000 tonnes on last year.

The continued closure of international boarders has meant labour shortages remain a real concern across the horticulture industry. The recent seasonal workers trials during mango harvest in the Northern Territory were deemed a success and are being expanded into WA, with Victoria recently allocating $17m to help address labour shortages in the state. While this will help to partially alleviate the issue in the short term it won't cover the entirety of the labour shortfall that has been forecast.  

In northern states, bananas are expected to see strong increases in yield and volume thanks to fantastic growing conditions throughout the winter months. Current banana prices are 37 per cent lower in comparison to this time last year with prices currently sitting at $1.26/kg. Demand is expected to remain steady over the coming month with prices anticipated to remain well below the comparative prices last year due to the increased produce.

Both export and domestic demand remains high for Australian Hass avocados. Australians continue to be the highest per capita consumers of avocados in the English-speaking world. Avocado prices dropped slightly this month though prices remain above the three-year average and significantly higher than this time last year. Prices should continue to trend downwards over the next month as additional supply comes onto the market.

Early season table grape harvest is expected to begin throughout the Northern Territory and Queensland this month, before moving south as temperatures rise. Total production is estimated to reach a record 240,000 tonnes this season, an increase of 15,000 tonnes in comparison to last year's harvest, thanks primarily to fantastic growing conditions across NSW and Victoria with additional plantings also beginning to fruit. Increased production is expected to be met by increased export demand with prices expected to increase slightly on the back of strong Chinese demand.

Favourable weather conditions throughout southern parts of Australia will mean strong vegetable crop numbers, particularly throughout parts of Victoria and New South Wales. Increased production is expected to keep broccoli prices below the seasonal average over the coming month. Strong crop numbers for carrots, potatoes and cauliflower are also helping to keep prices low.

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Ausmarket and Rural Bank
*Tropical price index includes bananas, mangoes, pineapples, passionfruit and paw paw.

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