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Driving Prices Up
- Dry conditions across parts of the country have reduced the availability of pasture feed, requiring supplemental feeding and the replacement of on farm stores of fodder.
- Supply shortages continue to affect the market, keeping prices high. Though this is countered somewhat by reduced sales at the higher price points.
- Feedlots are reporting a larger than usual stocking rate combined with the cancellation of some sales which is keeping levels high. This has meant they are looking for a large quantity of good quality produce and are sourcing across a wide area.
- As we move into autumn farmers are looking to build up on-farm supplies for the cooler months ahead.
Driving Prices Down
- Green feed continues to be available in areas which have received autumn rains; this is keeping demand down locally.
- A number of mixed farmers produced enough hay and silage for their own short to medium term use over the last season so they are not adding to the demand on the market.
- There is an abundance of feed grain options due to the bumper harvest combined with some adverse weather conditions leading to a downgrade of some grains. More of this is being incorporated into the fodder mix.
- Hay and straw production is still ongoing in limited quantities, supplying the local market.
- Trade in hay has slowed down across most regions which is traditional at this time of year. Though those areas seeing extended dry spells are increasing demand which is being met both locally and from interstate.
- There is expected concern across the livestock sectors, especially sheep graziers in relation to the latest updates on the sheep live export trade. This is mostly in WA but concern about flow on effects across both livestock and fodder industries is widespread.
- In South Australia there is some talk about a proposed plan to re-open some closed narrow gauge railway lines between privately owned receival sites and ports. Many growers are of the opinion the money would be better spent on the roads and investing in standard gauge rail.
- Local roads and infrastructure are in serious need of repair and maintenance and these repair works are expected to continue for some months, especially in areas hit by flooding events in 2022. This will have on-going effects on farm businesses in those regions.
- The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) states that La Niña has weakened in the tropical Pacific Ocean and is likely near its end. Ocean indicators of La Niña have returned to neutral levels, while atmospheric indicators that remain at La Niña levels have started to weaken. All but one of the surveyed international climate models suggest sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific will remain neutral through autumn. ENSO outlooks extending beyond autumn should be viewed with caution as models typically have lower forecast accuracy at this time of year.
- Buyers are encouraged to feed test and view fodder before purchase to be sure of the quality of feed.