Close to record prices and a favourable start climatically through most of the growing area has prompted a substantial increase in chickpea plantings for the season. ABARE data suggests chickpea planting will double in Queensland and increase by up to 15% in NSW.
Chickpea plantings are upWith prices recorded as high as $810/t delivered in the Darling Downs of Queensland in May and hectare contracts offered out of Narrabri in NSW at $750/t it is no wonder growers have adjusted their rotations or found some more ground to allocate to chickpeas. The substantial increase in value is said to be on the back of a reduced planting followed by a difficult season in India leading to a shortage in the marketplace.
In order to reap the rewards of these above average prices, protecting the investment will be paramount and it has not been without challenge thus far, a shortage of Simazine, Carbendazim and Mancozeb in Australia and a global shortage of Chlorothalonil is causing some concern. Due to the nature of fungicides being preventative only with no curative ability on Ascochyta Blight, timing and crop monitoring are essential to get right.
There are several resources available to assist in best management practices, including GrowNotes from the GRDC, as well as publications from Pulse Australia.