The Australian Macadamia Society has revised its 2019 crop forecast downwards after prolonged dry conditions across major growing areas, including the Bundaberg Region.
The new forecast is 42,900 tonnes, down from 49,900 tonnes.
As reported in the March forecast, these conditions have the potential to impact nut size, and this has proven to be the case, with the current season’s harvest producing a smaller sized nut.
Australian Macadamia Society chief executive Jolyon Burnett said conditions experienced during the summer represent a highly unusual weather event.
“In addition to the very hot temperatures, we experienced abnormally low rainfall and humidity across all major growing regions,” Mr Burnett said.
“Like any horticultural crop, we are susceptible to weather and unfortunately some years it disrupts the best laid plans.”
The lower crop will impact kernel available to the market and inventory levels are expected to be low at the end of the season.
Mr Burnett said the Australian industry was exploring the adoption of new measures in response to this atypical situation.
“We can’t control the weather, however, should these conditions arise again in the future, we want to be able to identify the impact much earlier in the forecasting process. We’re examining new measures to achieve this,” Mr Burnett said.
The Australian macadamia crop has been growing steadily since 2014, and Mr Burnett said overall demand remains strong, with keen interest generated by the implementation of the Innovation Initiative – the industry’s international marketing strategy.
“Our industry continues to invest in supporting the food sector in the marketing of macadamias, and investment in new plantings is continuing to expand,” Mr Burnett said.
This Australian macadamia crop forecast is provided by the Australian Macadamia Society based on actual factory receipts of the Australian Macadamia Handlers Association (AMHA) until end of June.
The AMHA represent over 90 per cent of all macadamia handlers.
A new crop report will be provided in September 2019 and the final figure for the 2019 crop will be announced in early December.
- Other news: Macadamia crop exceeds forecast