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There are seven classifications of allium crops reported by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and major produce markets in Australia. Below is a list and description of the alliums crops reported on by the ABS and major produce markets.
Bulb onions (Allium cepa). There are three main types of bulb onions including brown, red and white onions which are grown for their bulbs only.
Garlic (Allium oleraceum). These are grown for their bulbs only.
Leeks (Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum). These are grown for their leaves and thickened stem.
Spring onions (Allium fistulosum). This term means different things to different people. True spring onions are harvested with about 40cm of green leaves and a slightly enlarged bulb. Spring onions marketed in NSW are markedly different as they are generally a white bulbing variety that is harvested when the bulb is immature and the leaves are intact. They are commonly sold in bunches of 4 or 5 plants with about 2 bunches/kg.
Shallots (Allium cepa, aggregatum). This term also means different things to different people. True shallots are grown for their bulbs only. Shallots marketed in NSW are similar to true spring onion and are harvested with about 40cm of green leaves and a slightly enlarged bulb. They are marketed in bunches of about 20 plants with 3 bunches/kg. Shallots grown and marketed this way are also known as Eschallots (Allium ascalonicum).
Chives (Allium schoenoprasum). These are the smallest species in the allium family but are not mentioned in either the ABS or Sydney Market reporting service. It is suspected that any production of chives is recorded under spring onions or shallots. Due to insufficient data, chives have not been mentioned in this report.
Bulb onions (brown, red & white) constituted 94.4% of the total allium yield (t) in Australia during the 2007/08 season which represented 81.5% of the total allium value. Therefore it is calculated that garlic, leeks, spring onions and shallots constitute about 5.6% of 2007/08 Australian allium production (t) which is estimated to be worth 18.5% of the total Australian allium crop.
|Table 1: Australian allium statistics for 2007/08
($ / kg)
|Estimated gross value ($m)|
|All bulb onions
|Spring onions & shallots
|Table 2: Percentage estimates of the 2007/08 Australian allium crop
||Estimated gross value (%)
|All bulb onions||82.2||94.4||81.5|
|Spring onions & shallots||8.8||2.9||9.5|
Source: 2007/08 ABS and 2010 Sydney market reporting service