Australian chickpeas and lentils in 2022/23

Date: 21st December 2022 Category: Latest News
Australian chickpeas and lentils in 2022/23

It seemed like Australian farmers were in for a third consecutive bumper crop before incessant rains in Victoria and neighboring states during the critical maturing period ruined the party.

Lentil production, which is concentrated in Victoria and South Australia, has been affected the most. Large areas of land are flooded and the continued rains are affecting the crops and delaying the harvest meaning many exporters are finding it difficult to fulfill their committed shipments for November. Chickpea crops, however, have been spared the negative effects of excessive rains as acreages are concentrated in Queensland and New South Wales, which have been drier.


Despite good demand from traditional buyers in Bangladesh and Pakistan, Australia is set to be left with a sizeable carryout. Of the country’s major crops, chickpeas proved to be the least remunerative in the last marketing year, which pushed down this year’s acreage; according to the latest ABARES report, chickpea acreage was down to 443 thousand hectares, a 28% decrease on last year. The AgPulse Analytica yield model suggests a yield drop of 8.4% this year, which will lead to a crop size of 699 KMT, compared to 1.062 MMT last year (-37%).

For MY 2022/23, chickpea shipments started on a good note with bulk vessels leaving for Pakistan.  With India remaining absent from Australian markets, the rest of the demand will be made up by the UAE and Nepal, which we expect to be close to the average of the past couple of years.



India’s zero import duty on lentils will continue until March 2023 when the local crop starts arriving in the mandis. With the tight forex situation, total demand in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Pakistan took a hit in 2022 and tight supplies in drought-hit Canada brought South Asian importers to Australian shores.

This year, Canadian supplies are returning to normal, with global demand nearly stagnant, while Australian lentils are underwater. The AgPulse yield model has cut the production estimate in the past couple of months to 875 KMT, down by 13.5% from last year. This year, the lentil acreage in Australia was a record 546 thousand hectares but poor yields in Victoria will dent the final production figure.

We expect Bangladesh to retain its status as the largest importer with an expected volume of 340 KMT while India is likely to keep its import figure close to last year’s level. For Sri Lanka, we expect a further reduction in imports while the UAE is likely to reduce its buying sharply due to more Canadian produce being available.

Total exports in the current marketing year are expected to fall to 860 KMT, the lowest in three years.