Alistiar Murphy, Agfarm Account Manager CNSW
Conditions remain tough here in Central Western NSW with the weekends rainfall not producing the amount of precipitation as expected. Areas around Dubbo received anywhere from 3-8mm, with tallies falling away in areas further west and north. With such depleted moisture profiles these small rain events are not really providing any type of improvement in new crop prospects.
Most growers in Central Western NSW have reached the maximum amount of dry sowing they feel comfortable with for now and will need further rain to get more acres in the ground. Although there is still hope some decent falls (at least an inch) will arrive within the next four weeks and many would still sow as late as the second week in July.
There is a little more season confidence in Northern NSW and east of the Newell with growers in these areas up to 70% planted and experiencing varying degrees of germination.
Unfortunately, west of the Newell still remains very dry and we suspect only 30% has been dry sown to date with some growers in these areas reporting they have not received rain since March.
The Inner and Western Downs regions have pulled up for the moment as moisture is getting too far down. These areas don’t seem to be as concerned with the lack of winter opportunity, as they can switch to summer cropping intentions at the end of June if rain doesn’t eventuate.
Central Queensland had better summer rains in comparison to their southern counterparts, and as a result are sitting on some moisture. Springsure, Emerald and up to Clermont have sown and the crop is up but is still in need of rain to continue to develop. Some of the immediate areas around Dysart have largely missed out on the summer rain and are still waiting to receive a break in order for sowing progression to increase.
All in all, the outlook for Northern NSW and Southern Queensland still looks quite bleak, and although the sowing window it is getting quite late in traditional terms, current pricing will be enough to incentivise many to late sow should we get some type of June/early July break.
Prices as at 14th June 2018