Light rainfall leaves Esperance Zone production behind

Photo: Mark Seymour.

Photo: Mark Seymour.

The Esperance Port Zone is expected to be down on last year’s grain production record, with canola tonnage likely to be at it’s lowest in five years.

The state’s Grain Industry Association predict total crop production for the zone to be 2.3 million tonnes, a significant decrease on the 3 million tonne record achieved in 2017.

According to this month’s crop report, the zone was impacted by a late and difficult start with light rainfall and heavy wind.

Whilst most areas throughout the zone look to be around average with areas on the coast washed out and areas in the north very dry, some areas in the central region look well above average.

It is understood cereals are performing adequately, whilst the canola is poor as a result of decreased plantings from the late break, delayed maturity and poor establishment at the start of the season.

“Most growers took a risk adverse approach to the season coming off record tonnages produced in 2017,” the report stated.

“With the season starting poorly and patchy emergence with many crops, inputs have been held back and crops in general lack top end potential yield except for the central strip away from the coast.”

According to the Bureau of Meteorology, the spring season will see drier and warmer than average conditions across most of the country.