Caption: Grower navigating the Horticulture Statistics Handbook online
THE LATEST EDITION of the much-anticipated Australian Horticulture Statistics Handbook is now live and boasts an exciting new interactive dashboard with improved search functionality and user preferences.
The Handbook features data on more than 70 horticultural products including fruit, nuts, vegetables, nursery, turf and cut flowers.
The data shows that in 2018/19, the horticulture sector recorded its highest production value to date.
It reports that the sector has experienced seven years of consecutive growth, with the new data showing industry growth by 8.4 per cent or a $1.1 billion annual increase to reach a total value of $14.4 billion. The average compound annual growth rate over the last five years has been 5.6 per cent, or a total of 31 per cent.
Results by category show that in the fruit sector, the value of berries and citrus accounted for nearly one third (32 per cent) of the total value of fruit in 2018/19.
The value of the vegetable category increased by nearly nine (9) per cent to reach a value of $4.7 billion in 2018/19. Potatoes were the most valuable vegetable product at $752.6 million.
Meanwhile, the nursery sector accounted for 17 per cent of the total production value of horticulture in 2018/19.
And in trade and export, the 2018/19 value of table grapes exported increased by 44.5 per cent annually to reach a record value exceeding $500 million, now larger than the value of all citrus combined.
Almonds were the highest-valued horticulture product overall, achieving a record export value of $675 million. Almonds and macadamias also accounted for 89 per cent of the total value of nut production in 2018/19, up from 85 per cent in the previous year.
Hort Innovation’s Head of Data and Insights, Adam Briggs, said the Handbook provided important data for industry, researchers and decision makers; supported policy formation; and contributed to further research to benefit all horticulture industries.
He said the ongoing investment in the development and improvement of the Handbook meant new metrics which reported information about retail and foodservice distribution for fruit and vegetable products is now available. Further, the accessibility of the Handbook has also been improved.
“The new interface allows users to dynamically select products ‘on demand’ and perform a greater range of timeseries analysis on the data which now dates back seven years to 2012/13,” he said.
“These additional features mean that our stakeholders have more horticulture statistics available at their fingertips so they can remain informed and make the best decision for the success of their businesses.
“Hort Innovation is excited to launch this new iteration and will continue to develop the data.”
The Handbook, which captures data up until 30 June 2019, also revealed:
• The value of bean production increased by 45 per cent year on year – the highest increase of a vegetable product in value terms.
• The volume of sweetpotatoes grown increased an average of 12 per cent per year for the last five years, the highest growth rate of all vegetables. Total volume produced in 2018/19 is almost double that of 2013/14 levels.
• The value and volume of raspberries and blackberries puts them as the highest growing fruit over the five years leading up to 2018/19, with total value increasing one-and-a-half times since 2013/14 and volume nearly tripling.
To access Hort Innovation’s Australian Horticulture Statistics Handbook, visit www.horticulture.com.au/hortstats. The Handbook’s interactive dashboard is suitable for viewing on desktop computers, while PDF information can also be viewed on mobile.