SA agriculture sets new record despite challenging conditions

South Australia’s primary industries and agribusiness sector has reached record levels, generating $15.2 billion revenue in 2018-19 – an increase of two per cent on the previous year despite challenging conditions.

The 2018–19 Primary Industries Scorecard is being revealed today to coincide with the first AdvanceAg showcase at the Adelaide Showgrounds – which aims to assist producers to adopt the latest in on-farm innovation to help further grow agriculture in South Australia.

The scorecard shows the revenue, sales and exports of South Australia’s key primary industry sectors, with significant growth in revenue in industries such as wool (up 19 per cent), horticulture (up 12 per cent), forestry (up 11 per cent) and wine (up six per cent).

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said the growth in value of farm product is a testament to the innovation and skills of our farmers.

“Our primary industries and agribusiness sector is the biggest contributor to the state’s economy and the Marshall Liberal Government is committed to supporting continued growth in the sector,” said Minister Whetstone.

“This is why our ‘Growth State’ initiative focuses on food, wine and agribusiness to grow Gross State Product by three per cent per year.

“We see the adoption of AgTech as critical to achieving this goal and today’s AdvanceAg showcase will demonstrate how technology can be a game-changer when it comes to on-farm innovation, improved productivity, sustainability and profitability into the future.

“Almost 116,000 jobs were supported by primary industries and processing – supporting growth in our regions.

“While it’s fantastic to see record levels of revenue across the sector overall, it’s also important to acknowledge that there are many farmers across South Australia who have been doing it tough with drought and natural disasters hitting parts of our state.

“Despite experiencing unfavourable seasonal conditions, gross value of production increased by 13 per cent to $7.9 billion, with this increase largely due to strong prices for a number of our sectors during the year.

“Our agriculture, food, wine and forestry exports represented 47 per cent of the state’s total merchandise exports in 2018–19. Exports increased for dairy by 25 per cent, wool by 19 per cent, horticulture by 12 per cent, seafood by 11 per cent and wine by 3.5 per cent.

Combined gross food and wine revenue was up 0.5 per cent to reach $20.4 billion.

The South Australian Primary Industries Scorecard is available – both as a report and an interactive dashboard – at

mediarelease feature