Based on 2018/19 compulsory levy figures, the national industry sold 372,000 tonnes of bananas. This is 4.1% less than the 2017/18 production of 388,000.
The banana levies received by Hort Innovation provide a comparable estimate of annual production. However, each year there is a lag in payments – for example, levies on June production are paid in the following financial year.
- In 2016/17, Australian banana growers sold a record 414,000 tonnes of fresh bananas (based on national levy figures).
- In 2015/16, that figure sat at 393,000 tonnes and, in 2014/15 , 371,000 tonnes (record year).
- Fresh supply was valued at $586.8m in 2017/18.
- In November 2018, Pinnacle Agribusiness released the Banana Enterprise Performance Comparison, funded by Hort Innovation. It noted the farm gate value from the 2016/17 production of 414,000 tonnes was $679 million. This delivered a $1.3 billion contribution to the economy.
That same study showed the industry supported more than 18,000 full-time and part-time jobs (including supply chain) in Australia.
The banana industry is the major economic driver and employer in Tully, Innisfail, Mareeba, Kennedy, Lakeland and Carnarvon.
The following table shows significant increases in Queensland as the dominant producing State, over the last two decades.
Australian Banana Production (tonnes)
|2015||353,500||16,000||1,000 *||500 *||371,000|
*Cyclone Olwyn destroyed Carnarvon’s production and the Freckle eradication program meant all NT banana plants in the Top End were destroyed.