Story sponsored by NAB.
Widespread rains across most of Western Australia (WA) in early August have been a game changer for the state's winter crop outlook, with improved prospects of an average size harvest.
NAB Senior Agribusiness Manager WA, Brett Willmott, said before the widespread August rain, crops across WA were starting to lose potential, and in some areas, were on a knife's edge due to below average winter rainfall.
"While the state has received well-timed rain so far, there is still less subsoil moisture reserve than elsewhere and strong winds in late May caused some damage to emerging crops, particularly in the northern region," Mr Willmott said.
"Subsoil moisture levels are generally average to below average across the wheatbelt, which is still a risk considering the generally below average in season rainfall and drier spring outlook for WA."
NAB's latest Rural Commodities Wrap highlights a revised wheat production forecast for WA of 8.1 million tonnes, a slight drop from original estimates of 8.5 million tonnes in June, 2020.
"The culminating results of the late August rain have been positive, however with some recent warm days, average yields are still very dependent on rain and a soft spring finish," Mr Willmott said.
The Grain Industry Association of Western Australia's (GIWA) August Crop Report predicts total grain production of 14.9 million tonnes, which is close to the state's five-year average of 15.29 million tonnes, up 32 per cent on 2019, and total wheat production of 8.9 million tonnes.
The Bureau of Meteorology's (BoM) seasonal rain three-month outlook remains generally neutral for southern WA, in contrast to much of eastern Australia.
On a national level, NAB's latest wheat crop forecast has been revised down slightly from original estimates of 25.9 million tonnes to 24.7 million tonnes, which assumes an average finish to the season.
"Big late summer rains and consistently wetter than average three-month outlooks from the BoM led to elevated expectations for the 2020-21 season, which have since been challenged by drier conditions in late autumn and into winter," Mr Willmott said.
"While this is a roughly 'average' result, if it transpires it would be an improvement on last season's yields."
To discuss your harvest or winter cropping needs, contact Mr Willmott on 0427 311 548 or email@example.com.
Story sponsored by NAB.