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New South Wales on track for above average crop

Michael Condon, Thursday June 19, 2014 - 16:03 EST
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Wheat sits in a field outside Orange in central west NSW. - ABC

With recent good rainfall in autumn and early winter, New South Wales is on track to have an above average winter grain crop.

The state's farmers are still a long way from harvest, and pests, diseases, frosts and rainfall could all have an impact this year.

Technical specialist Don McCaffery, from the Department of Primary Industries, says the really disappointing aspect this year is the lack of rain in the north leading to a below average outlook there.

"The north did get some rain last week but not enough and certainly not enough sub-soil moisture to justify putting a crop in," Mr McCaffery said.

"This will be the second year in a row that many will not put in a crop in areas like Walgett," he said.

"Also, north of Moree, and the Liverpool Plains need more significant rain to have any chance of a good crop."

But he says in the state's south it's a different story, with bumper crops expected in many areas.

"On what is there now the whole state is tracking above average, but we have a long way to go.

"The early start to the season has left the crops open to the possibility of frost damage later in the year and also allowed the pests and diseases to take off a bit in some parts.

He says farmers need to keep an eye out for pests, diseases and weeds.


© ABC 2014

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