September 12, 2008


Rabobank cuts Australian wheat crop range to 19 million to 23 million tonnes



Rabobank Friday (September 12) lowered its forecast for Australian wheat production this year to 19 million to 23 million tonnes, based on current crop conditions and expectations of normal rainfall and seasonal conditions in coming months.


The new forecast is down from a previous range of 20 million to 24 million tonnes.


At this stage, the national crop shows significant variability, however, production isn't expected to fall to the levels of the previous two seasons, it said in a monthly global soft commodities review.


"There is certainly downside risk from current forecast levels if conditions are unfavourable between early September and harvest in November/December," the bank said.


Drought slashed national output in 2007 to 13 million tonnes and in 2006 to 11 million tonnes.


After annual domestic wheat demand of around 7 million tonnes is met, Australia is usually a major supplier to the global trade.

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