The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) are working with agriculture experts to explore the use of new data sources and methods to produce official agriculture statistics.
Using this co-design approach may help to reduce reporting burden on farmers, improve the timeliness of statistics and produce more detailed regional data.
The experimental sugarcane production estimates contained in this publication have been produced using this exploratory co-design approach, harnessing existing industry and government data sources. Traditionally sugarcane statistics are produced by the ABS through the annual Rural Environment and Agricultural Commodities Survey (REACS).
The process used to produce these experimental estimates indicates that for sugarcane, use of non-survey data sources can improve the regional detail and timeliness of sugarcane production statistics.
Key statistics from the experimental estimates
In 2019-20, 30.04 million tonnes of sugarcane were harvested and delivered to sugar mills in Australia.
Australia’s five largest sugarcane producing Statistical Area Level 2 (SA2) regions were all in Queensland and together produced 16.43 million tonnes of sugarcane, over half of Australia’s 2019 sugarcane harvest. These SA2s were:
- Burdekin, the largest sugarcane producing SA2 with 7,013,900 tonnes;
- Ingham Region (3,602,200 tonnes);
- Tully (2,183,400 tonnes);
- Walkerston-Eton (2,157,800 tonnes); and
- Pioneer Valley (1,473,500 tonnes).
These Queensland SA2s were also the top sugarcane producing regions in 2015-16, when this data was last published for SA2s from the 2015-16 Agricultural Census.