Production

In 2015, Australia's rice crop is expected to decline to 710,000 tons, around 15 per cent below the previous year, due to adverse weather and lower acreage. Contributing factors have been the higher cost of water quotas and limits on water supply. Milled rice production is forecast to fall 15 per cent to 511,000 tons. Yields are likely to be stable at around ten tons per hectare grown. Exports for 2015 are forecast at 400,000 tons despite lower production; as stocks are drawn down to meet domestic and overseas market demand.

The Australian rice industry has the capacity to produce over one million tonnes of rice per year, but lower average rainfall and water quotas have prevented this total from being reached. In mid-2014, SunRice unsuccessfully called for a 20 per cent increase in water for rice growers to allow them to increase production by an estimated 100,000 tonnes a year. Low water allocations led SunRice to close its Coleambally rice mill for the harvest in 2015, after it had re-opened the site in 2013. SunRice has therefore sought to diversify its domestic supply sources and in 2014 acquired rice milling assets in the Burdekin River region of North Queensland. This region holds Queensland's largest dam and irrigation network and could support a significant expansion of rice production in Australia.

Rice, Milled

2012/2013

2013/2014

2014/2015

Market Begin Year

Mar 2012

Mar 2013

Mar 2014

Australia

USDA Official

New post

USDA Official

New post

USDA Official

New post

Area Harvested

114

114

76

76

70

71

Beginning Stocks

40

40

238

238

171

182

Milled Production

836

836

600

600

504

511

Rough Production

1,161

1,161

833

833

700

710

Milling Rate (.9999)

7,200

7,200

7,200

7,200

7,200

7,200

MY Imports

152

152

150

150

150

155

TY Imports

152

152

150

150

150

155

TY Imp. from U.S.

13

13

0

12

0

12

Total Supply

1,028

1,028

988

988

825

848

MY Exports

440

440

460

446

400

400

TY Exports

460

460

430

466

400

400

Consumption and Residual

350

350

357

360

360

360

Ending Stocks

238

238

171

182

65

88

Total Distribution

1,028

1,028

988

988

825

848

1000 HA, 1000 MT, MT/HA