Low Supply, High Demand: A Look At The Dramatic Plunge In Australian Barley Exports Last October

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The Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows a dramatic decrease in feed barley and sorghum exports in October compared to September.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has released data showing that in October, Australia exported 84,776 tonnes of malting barley, 162,216t of feed barley, and 271,497t of sorghum. This is excellent news for the Australian economy and will help keep these products’ prices low.

“Supplies have run out in Victoria and South Australia, and programs have ground to a halt,” expressed Flexi Grain pool manager Sam Roache.

Australian Barley Exports

The dip in feed barley exports was particularly sharp. Shipments fell 76 per cent from 662,421 tonnes in September to 162,216 tonnes in October. Additionally, sorghum shipments also saw a notable drop as they fell 31 per cent from 395,447 tonnes.

The three most prominent export destinations for October-shipped malting barley were Mexico (33,002t), Japan (28,750t) and South Africa (15,000t). These countries accounted for roughly 70% of the 84,776 tonnes of malting barley exported from Australia during the month.

The decrease is a concerning development for Australia’s agricultural sector and could indicate that farmers are not profiting as much as they had hoped. The figures suggest that local producers need help competing against cheaper imports coming into Australia or that demand has fallen due to changing weather patterns causing smaller harvests across the country.

Australia is also experiencing stiff competition from international suppliers such as Russia, who have recently ramped up the production of cereals and grains to become more self-sufficient.

High corn and feed prices in Canada are keeping pressure away from export markets, and similarly, the French-EU feed market is strong due to last season’s drought and limited access to Ukraine products,” said Mr Roache.

Whatever the cause of this downturn in Australian grain exports, it is clear that the agricultural sector will have to adjust if it is going to remain competitive during this challenging period.

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