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About Walnuts


The southern hemisphere produces just 3 percent of traded walnuts annually and for six months of the year, Australia can supply the freshest walnuts in the world.


  • Production areas

    • The Australian walnut industry operates in most states of Australia and has grown significantly in recent years due to growth in the establishment of large scale commercial plantings.
    • Major walnut production areas in Australia are on the east coast of Tasmania, the Goulburn Valley near Shepparton and the Murray Irrigation area near Kerang and Swan Hill i n Victoria and in the Riverina near Griffith in New South Wales.
    • Small scale orchards are scattered in the Ovens Valley, Gippsland and Central regions of Victoria, the Southern Highlands and Central Tablelands of New South Wales, the Adelaide Hills and Riverland regions of South Australia, and in south-west Western Australia.
    • The Australian industry is a mix of small, older orchards and new, more extensive orchards. Most orchards are family operations but these do not represent the majority of area under cultivation.

  • Current production

    • The production of Australian walnuts in 2016 was in excess of 6,000 tonnes in-shell, with a farm-gate value of $30 million and export value of $15 million.
    • A near 3,600 ha of mature and developing trees were under cultivation in 2016. This number is expected to rise to more than 4,300 ha by 2021 as current growers expand their orchards, and as new growers enter the industry in current and new regions.
    • Webster Limited is the largest walnut grower, owning and/or managing more than 3,100 ha of orchards. When mature, these orchards are expected to produce over 18,000 tonnes in-shell per annum.

  • Industry potential

    • Investment in new orchard establishment continues through current enterprises and new entrants. Orchards established in the last five years have provided a firm base on which to further build the industry.
    • New varieties and improved propagation and orchard management and irrigation techniques have reduced time to bearing and increased nut yield.
    • Australia is in a favourable position for walnut production across the southern hemisphere because of the suitability of climatic conditions, water, soil types and topography and capital raising ability.
    • Factors that encourage investment in walnuts include; disease free status of most walnut pests and diseases in Australia; walnuts are wind pollinated; continuing strong global demand for walnuts and; increasing awareness of the health benefits of walnut consumption.
  • Markets - present and future

    • Current domestic consumption per annum of walnut is 600-800 tonnes of in-shell and 4,900 tonnes of kernel (circa 9,000 tonnes in-shell equivalent). Walnuts are sold through major retail chains and into the bakery and confectionery industries.
    • Australian in-shell walnuts are sought by the local market because of their superior flavor and freshness compared to imported product, and supply the premium quality end of the market at a premium price.
    • Several cracking facilities are currently operating, and a state-of-the-art cracking facility commissioned at Leeton in New South Wales in 2014, facilitating the supply of kernel to the Australian market.
    • Locally produced walnuts now supply total domestic demand for in-shell walnuts. There is also demand for good quality Australian walnuts in export markets, with about 70 percent of Australia’s walnut production currently being exported.
    • Global growth in demand for walnuts has been maintained since 2011. World consumption has been increasing at a steady rate of about 4% per year. With the greater awareness of the health benefits of including a few grams of nuts in the daily diet, this rate is expected to be at least maintained.
  • Competitive advantages

    • Australia is a reliable exporter of counter-season walnuts to the northern hemisphere. The southern hemisphere produces just 3% of traded walnuts annually and for six months of the year Australia supplies the freshest walnuts in the world.
    • Australia is free from many walnut pests and diseases affecting other countries, so chemical use is low in Australian walnut production.


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Australian Nut Industry Council

42 Simpsons Road
Currumbin Waters Q 4223

Phone: 0409 707 806



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