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Agriculture in Australia

Australia is a major agricultural producer and exporter. Agriculture and its closely related sectors earn $155 billion-a-year for a 12% share of GDP. Australian farmers and graziers own 135,997 farms, covering 61% of Australia’s landmass. In 2009, Australian farms produced 93% of the total volume of food consumed in Australia.[1]

The agricultural sector, at farm-gate, contributes 3 percent to Australia’s total gross domestic product (GDP).[1] The gross value of Australian farm production in 2010-11 was $48.7 billion.[1] When the vital value-adding processes that food and fibre go through once they leave the farm are added in, along with the value of all the economic activities supporting farm production through farm inputs, agriculture’s contribution to the GDP averages out at around 12 percent (or $155 billion).[1]

Land use Edit

The 2012-13 area of land used for agriculture in Australia was 397 million hectares.[2] The area planted to crops in Australia was 31.6 million hectares.[2] Approximately 52% of Australia's total land area was used for agriculture.[2] Of all the states, Queensland had the highest proportion of agricultural land with 75% of the state area used for agricultural production, closely followed by New South Wales with 74%.[2]

Work force Edit

As of 2010-11, there were 307,000 people employed in Australian agriculture.[1] The complete agricultural supply chain, including the affiliated food and fibre industries, provided over 1.6 million jobs to the Australian economy.[1]

In 2011, there were 157,000 farmers in Australia in 93,300 farming families.[1] There were 19,700 fewer farmers in Australia in 2011 than in 2006, a fall of 11% over five years.[1] Over the 30 years to 2011, the number of farmers declined by 106,200 (40%), equating to an average of 294 fewer farmers every month over that period.[1]

Water use Edit

Water use on Australian Farms increased by 32 per cent in 2012-13, to a total of 11.9 million megalitres, up 2.9 million megalitres on last year.[3] 11.1 million megalitres (or 93 per cent of the total use) was for irrigation.[3]

Exports Edit

Australian farmers export around 60 percent of what they grow and produce.[1] Australia’s farm exports earned the country $32.5 billion in 2010-11, while the wider agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors earn the country $36.2 billion in exports.[1]

Production Edit

Production in 2012:

Product Production (tonnes) Area (ha) Yield
(kilos/ha)
Seed (tonnes) Notes
Wheat 29,905,009 13,500,000 2,215 676,000 [4]
Barley 8,220,863 3,718,261 2,210 174,000 [4]
Oats 1,262,032 731,144 1,726 35,000 [4]
Sorghum 2,238,912 659,279 3,396 5,183 [4]
Triticale 284,614 144,550 1,969 12,000 [4]
Rice 918,733 103,115 8,909 10,400 [4]
Corn 450,535 69,684 6,465 1,000 [4]
Rye 40,000 60,000 666 2,700 [4]
Millet 45,000 38,000 1,184 228 [4]
Canary seed 6,000 8,000 750 351 [4]
Rapeseed 3,427,294 2,358,735 1,453 13,087 [4]
Sunflower seed 47,000 40,200 1,169 212 [4]
Safflower seed 4,800 9,500 505 320 [4]
Linseed 7,000 7,000 1,000 469 [4]
Olive 85,000 38,000 2,236 - [4]
Lupin 981,512 689,064 1,424 25,211 [4]
Chickpea 673,371 456,070 1,476 17,208 [4]
Peas (dry) 342,500 248,900 1,376 23,521 [4]
Lentil 463,000 207,000 2,236 - [4]
Broad beans 425,000 160,000 2,656 5,600 [4]
Beans (dry) 75,700 93,200 812 2,936 [4]
Soybeans 86,100 38,100 2,259 1,644 [4]
Beans (green) 35,000 7,000 5,000 - [4]
Peas (green) 38,000 3,500 10,857 - [4]
Sugar cane 25,957,093 338,626 76,654 - [4]
Potato 1,288,186 33,670 38,259 94,200 [4]
Pumpkins 103,000 7,000 14,714 - [4]
Tomato 371,514 7,415 50,103 - [4]
Onions (dry) 346,640 6,708 51,675 - [4]
Lettuce 114,682 6,601 17,373 - [4]
Carrots 319,185 5,528 57,739 - [4]
Grapes 1,656,621 148,489 11,156 - [4]
Apple 289,064 22,000 13,139 - [4]
Orange 389,799 22,000 17,718 - [4]
Peaches 100,462 19,000 5,287 - [4]
Banana 285,535 13,496 21,157 - [4]
Avocado 48,951 10,000 4,895 - [4]
Mangoes 44,946 9,600 4,681 - [4]
Pear 119,274 7,200 16,565 - [4]
Apricot 13,000 6,300 2,063 - [4]
Tangerines 85,109 4,000 21,277 - [4]
Watermelon 140,000 4,200 33,333 - [4]
Almonds 142,680 28,500 5,006 - [4]
Groundnuts 24,800 11,100 2,234 228 [4]
Walnuts 2,800 7,500 373 - [4]
Mushrooms 46,493 148 314,141 - [4]
Tobacco 4,400 1,480 2,973 - [4]
Cotton 973,497 - - - [4]
Cottonseed 1,522,033 - - 13,320 [4]

Under 10,000 hectares:

  • Maize (green) - 6800
  • Melons - 3600
  • Cauliflowers - 3200
  • Plums and sloes - 3000
  • Pineapple - 2700
  • Cabbages - 2400
  • Chillies and peppers, green - 2400
  • Cherry - 2200
  • Asparagus - 2100
  • Sweet potatoes - 1750
  • Pistachios - 1740
  • Strawberries - 1562
  • Spinach - 1500
  • Anise, badian, fennel, coriander - 1450
  • Lemon - 1250
  • Cow peas - 6304
  • Grapefruit - 760
  • Cucumbers - 500
  • Hops - 415
  • Papaya - 320
  • Mustard seed - 316
  • Flax fibre - 295
  • Kiwi - 195
  • Persimmons - 90
  • Figs - 72
  • Currants - 70

Livestock Edit

References Edit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 Farm Facts, National Farmers' Federation (NFF), retrieved at 8 November 2014
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 LAND USE - 7121.0 - Agricultural Commodities, Australia, 2012-2013, 30/05/2014, Australian Bureau of Statistics
  3. 3.0 3.1 4618.0 - Water Use on Australian Farms, 2012-13, 30/05/2014, Australian Bureau of Statistics
  4. 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 4.11 4.12 4.13 4.14 4.15 4.16 4.17 4.18 4.19 4.20 4.21 4.22 4.23 4.24 4.25 4.26 4.27 4.28 4.29 4.30 4.31 4.32 4.33 4.34 4.35 4.36 4.37 4.38 4.39 4.40 4.41 4.42 4.43 4.44 4.45 4.46 4.47 4.48 FAOSTAT: Production-Crops-Yields, 1961-2013, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

External links Edit


Agriculture by country (v)
Australia * Canada * Ireland * New Zealand * United Kingdom * United States * Spain * Chile

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