Agriculture weathers the COVID storm

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Image Credit: www.daf.qld.gov.au
Media Release

Agribusiness and the food sector are holding up well as Queensland’s economy recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic and we continue supplying consumers across Australia and the world with nutritious, high-quality produce.

Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities Mark Furner said the latest data showed the value of Queensland’s primary industry commodities to be just over $19 billion.

“While this is slightly down on the average for the past five years, it’s a 1% uptick from 2019–20,” Mr Furner said.

“The largest contributors to the current output, by estimated GVP, are meat products (46%), horticulture (30%), sugar (8%) and cereal products (7%), with output volumes growing on average by 5% per year.

“Agriculture in all its forms still constitutes a vital part of the Queensland economy, and a key strength as we implement Queensland’s Economic Recovery Plan.”

Key outcomes:

  • Crops – up 51% through better seasonal conditions, increased cotton plantings and strong grain prices
  • Livestock disposals – down 10% due to fewer cattle and calves slaughtered
  • Fruit and nuts – up 3% with a 30% increase in apples, 42% increase in mandarins and 26% increase in macadamias, which offsets decreases in mangoes bananas and strawberries
  • Bananas – down 10% due to crop losses from Severe Tropical Cyclone Niran
  • Sweet corn – down 16% because of lower production due to fall armyworm.

Mr Furner said this data could be accessed via a new “Data Farm” portal at daf.qld.gov.au/datafarm, which has replaced the biannual Queensland AgTrends publication, and providing a wider range of data.

“Data Farm features regional and trade datasets, as well as interactive visual displays allowing users to easily interpret industry trends. Data can be downloaded and used to help with investment decisions that help grow the sector and create jobs,” he said.

Users can access five interactive dashboards:

  • Sector overview – visual overview of gross value of production (GVP), production, employment and business trends at a sector and industry level.
  • AgTrends – analysis of GVP and volume of production index at multiple levels.
  • Exports – value and volume analysis of Queensland’s agricultural exports.
  • Regions – regional gross value analysis of Queensland’s agricultural commodities.
  • Labour Demand – maps seasonal labour demand for agricultural commodities.

The Data Farm portal is another demonstration of the Queensland Government investing in innovation so Queensland farmers can be the best in the world.