THE Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) is forecasting a winter crop production of 14.4 million tonnes for Western Australia.
In its June crop report released last week, ABARES believes the winter crop planted area will fall by three per cent in WA, to 7.8 million hectares this year.
The area planted to wheat is forecast to fall by 5pc to 4.5mha due to low levels of soil moisture discouraging planting in some regions and ABARES is estimating this will produce a production figure of 8.2mt.
As already reported barley production in WA this year is expected to be way up to 1.6mha.
This is up some 10pc compared to last year.
ABARES said expected margins on barley provided an incentive to increase plant area, and the longer planting window for cereals is expected to result in some late plantings following rain events.
ABARES believes barley production could be in the order of 3.7mt.
The increase in barley plantings has also been caused by the dropping of canola hectares out of programs.
The lack of summer rain and inadequate soil moisture in autumn months during the planting window saw the dropping of canola out of the mix, with it replaced mostly by barley.
This has contributed to a forecast fall of 18pc in canola planting to 1mha, with production expected to be about 1.2mt.
- For the full story on the ABARES predictions, make sure you get this Thursday's edition of Farm Weekly.