FACTBOX-Australian 2010/11 wheat crop forecasts

(Updates Australian Crop Forecasters estimate)

SYDNEY, April 6 (BestGrowthStock) – Australia, the world’s fourth
largest wheat exporter, could boost output of the grain in
2010/11 by nearly 4 percent from a year ago, thanks to good
rain ahead of planting, a private crop forecaster said on
Tuesday.

Australian Crop Forecasters said early indications pointed
to a 22.5 million tonnes harvest, up from the firm’s January
estimate of 21.7 million tonnes. The raised estimate follows
rain across key grain-growing areas.

Seeding winter crops such as wheat and canola usually
starts in late April with the harvest between October and late
January.

Estimates of Australia’s 2010/11 wheat crop from private and
government forecasters:

* Australian Crop Forecasters (private consultant)
Crop: 22.5 million tonnes

Issued: April 6

Next update: to be advised.

Methodology: Based on surveys of industry participants,
the group’s private database, physical inspections and
on-the-ground contacts.

* National Australia Bank

Crop: 22.6 million tonnes

Issued: Mar 26:

Next update: to be advised

Methodology: Based on information from the bank’s
regional agribusiness managers’ network and surveys with
regional industry participants and economists.

* U.S. Department of Agriculture Canberra attache
Crop: 22 million tonnes.

Issued: March 18

Next update: to be advised

Methodology: Field surveys, information from industry
sources, “all sources”.

* Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Crop: 20 million tonnes

Issued: March 4

Next update: to be advised

Methodology: Surveys of growers, bank staff in the field
and industry officials. Modelled yields based on observed
seasonal conditions plus medium term seasonal outlook.

* Rabobank Australia

Crop: 20 million tonnes

Issued: March 4

Next update: to be advised

Methodology: Based on a mix of analysis and anecdotal
information from a network of contacts through Rabobank’s
branches in Australia. Information is received from farmers on
planting expectations, with updates on yield expectations as
the season progresses.

* Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics
(government department)

Crop: 21.94 million tonnes.

Issued: March 2

Next Update: June 16

Methodology: Based on physical farm survey data,
information from bulk handlers and state agricultural
departments and computer modelling.

RECENT PRODUCTION

YEAR Million tonnes

2009/10 21.656 (ABARE)

2008/09 20.938

2007/08 13.039 (drought)

2006/07 10.641 (drought)

2005/06 25.173

2004/05 21.905

2003/04 26.132 (record)

2002/03 10.132 (drought)

2001/02 24.299

EXPORTS

YEAR Million tonnes

2009/10 13.874 (ABARE forecast)

2008/09 14.568

2007/08 7.444

2006/07 8.685

2005/06 15.969

2004/05 14.675

2003/04 17.867

2002/03 9.107

2001/02 16.317

KEY FACTS

– Australia is the world’s fourth-largest wheat exporter,
with about 8 percent of world trade. Its major customer is
Indonesia.

The wheat export industry was liberalised in 2008 when a
monopoly held by AWB Ltd (AWB.AX: ), the former Australian Wheat
Board, was replaced with a system of licensed exporters.

AWB is one of the licensed exporters, competing with groups
such as Cargill Inc [CARG.UL], Louis Dreyfus, Glencore
International and Bunge.
Stock Market News

(Compiled by Bruce Hextall)

FACTBOX-Australian 2010/11 wheat crop forecasts