Situation and outlook for primary industries

Get the latest update on the performance of our main primary sectors and our forecast for the future. 

About SOPI

The Economic Intelligence Unit releases a Situation and outlook for primary industries (SOPI) report quarterly. SOPI reports look at the performance of our main primary sectors and forecast how they’ll perform over the next 2 to 5 years.

Use SOPI to get historical and forecast production and trade data.

SOPI also analyses the performance of primary industries in New Zealand and looks at emerging issues affecting trade and production.

Update from the latest SOPI – September 2018

New Zealand's primary industry exports are forecast to increase by 2.5% in the year ending June 2019 to $43.8 billion. This follows an exceptional result in the year to June 2018, when primary industry exports rose by nearly 12% with higher export revenue across all sectors.

In 2019, we expect horticulture to be the fastest-growing sector. Improved growing conditions (compared to 2018) for the most recent harvests led to higher yields for kiwifruit and most other horticultural products. Dairy export revenue is forecast to increase 2.1% from last year to just over $17 billion in the year to June 2019, building on gains in the previous 2 years.

Download the September 2018 SOPI report [PDF, 4.4 MB]

Download SOPI data [XLSX, 66 KB]

What's happening in our sectors


In the year to June 2019, we forecast:

  • dairy exports to rise 2.1% to $17 billion
  • limited growth in milk production on farm
  • higher value products like cheese and infant formula to drive growth in export revenue.


Meat and wool

In the year to June 2019, we forecast:

  • meat and wool export revenue to decrease by 1.3% to $9.4 billion (after a large 14.2% gain in 2018)
  • lamb and venison farm gate prices to increase even more, after a record year in 2018
  • exports to fall due to an expected 2.4% decline in lamb, mutton, and beef production.



In the year to June 2019, we forecast:

  • forestry exports to fall 0.3% to $6.4 billion due to lower log prices. Lower prices are thought to be mainly due to China's lower purchasing power with their weakening currency.
  • continued strong demand for logs in China (due to construction activity) should offset most of the reduction in export value.



In the year to June 2019, we forecast:

  • horticulture exports to rise 13.1% to $6.1 billion
  • kiwifruit export revenue to rise 22.6%, because of a very good kiwifruit harvest in March/April 2018 (after a poor harvest in 2017) and rising kiwifruit prices
  • the rest of the horticulture sector to grow by 8%.




In the year to June 2019, we forecast:

  • seafood exports to increase 8.5% to $1.9 billion
  • demand from key markets to continue to rise, supporting increasing prices
  • growth in aquaculture production will allow more exports to important markets.



In the year to June 2019 we forecast:

  • exports for the year ending June 2019 to fall 3.6% to $235 million (after stronger exports earlier in 2018 from an earlier harvest)
  • a positive long-term outlook for arable exports, with moderate price and volume growth.



Other primary sector exports

In the year to June 2019, we forecast:

  • export revenue to increase to $2.7 billion, up 0.9% from 2018
  • increases in beverages and other products, honey, and live animals to offset decreases in sugar, confectionery, and innovative processed food exports.


All SOPI reports

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