Australian Chickpea Market Overview

After recovering from droughts in the NSW region, Australias Chickpea crops are about 70% larger than that of 2019. The forecast is predicted to produce more than 700,000t of chickpeas in 2020-21, with Bangladesh and Pakistan being the tops buyers of Australian chickpeas.

Bangladesh has bought some new-crop chickpeas out of central Queensland already, and is the likely customer for two 10,000t parcels booked out of Mackay in December and January. This has supported prices paid to growers which have peaked in the past month at $670/t

At present pricing levels throughout the pulse sector are remaining relatively strong, although the market has this week fallen to around $640/t, down $15-$20/t since late last week as shipment rolls into the November-December slot.

A national chickpea breeding program launched last month from the NSW Department of Primary Industries Tamworth Agricultural Institute under a $30 million plan to boost production and exports. The Chickpea Breeding Australia (CBA) program would be a 5-year partnership between the NSW Government and the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC).

Chickpea Breeding Australia will give our farmers an edge over their global counterparts through the development of new chickpea varieties, and by increasing yield, quality and disease resistance. This state produces 44 per cent of the nation’s chickpea production, this is a crop which allows nitrogen fixation for following crops and has firm prices. This is an important and strategic investment in both operations and infrastructure that will result in significant increases in chickpea breeding capacity over the next five years

Back in December 2017, India imposed a 30-per-cent tariff on chickpeas, and increased it to 40pc in February 2018 to support prices for its domestic crop. However some traders are already buying chickpeas at a premium based on the potential of the tariffs being lifted.