Driving Prices Up
  • Western Australia’s dry conditions show no signs of abating anytime soon with fodder supplies in some demand. This coupled with a smaller hay production this year is putting increasing pressure on prices in the state. Similarly parts of South Australia are beginning to see drying conditions with livestock producers looking to ensure winter feed options, which is keeping prices steady.
  • Most demand continues to be from feedlots and livestock producers looking to increase cattle and sheep weight due to the lift in the saleyard prices.
  • Exporters continue to be a player in the market and are looking to fill shipments as well as secure reasonably high volumes of available stock on hand. This is having an effect on export grade cereal prices, with a flow on effect to other fodder lines.
Driving Prices Down
  • Green grass and lush forage paddocks across most of the east coast of Australia is keeping demand lower than expected for this time of year. The lack of consistent high temperatures has seen less drying of in large parts of the country. In some places this is seeing a reduction in pricing to get some fodder moving, but the market continues to be flat for many regions.
  • Some previous season lower quality cereal hay is available in the market as producers who have had additional fodder producing opportunities look to empty some sheds of older stores.
  • Continued silage and hay production in most of Victoria, Tasmania and NSW is adding more supply to the market and keeping buyers optimistic about availability moving into autumn and winter.
Local News
  • The MV Bahijah situation is very much a live issue for graziers and members of the export chain especially in WA. The public perception of the conditions for the sheep and cattle on-board including the ramifications for the live export industry is causing concern within the sector. This issue as well as the broader live export trade has been in the minds of many fodder producers as they contemplate long term business decisions.
  • Over the spring 2023 to summer 2024 period, reports of hay fires seem to be much higher than previous seasons. AFIA is currently collating a list of hay fires across the country for this period, and if you are aware of other hay fire events we would welcome your input. Details can be found here
  • The Bureau has stated that El Niño continues in the tropical Pacific Ocean. However sea surface temperatures have peaked and are now declining. We are expected to return to neutral El Niño–Southern Oscillation levels in the southern hemisphere in autumn 2024. Some atmospheric indicators, such as cloudiness near the Date Line, are close to normal levels. The typical drying influence of El Niño on Australia’s climate usually reduces during summer, especially in the east; however, below median rainfall is still often observed in north-east Australia. As we have seen this year and through historical data, high-impact rainfall events can occur during El Niño years, particularly during October to April when severe storm frequency peaks.
  • Buyers are encouraged to feed test and view fodder before purchase to be sure of the quality of feed.