Australia Citrus Annual 2009
At time of writing this report, drought and low prices for fresh oranges are constraining orange production in Australia. Despite recent rainfall and some improvement in the availability of irrigation water, overall water availability remains at historically low levels following years of drought. A stronger Australian dollar has kept export prices low, although industry sources believe that historically high retail prices for fresh juice have improved the outlook for oranges suitable for processing.
As an example of the severity of drought conditions, the key production and exporting state of South Australia recently had its water allocation increased to 16 percent (of total entitlement). However, despite this increase, water allocations generally remain at historically low levels.