GDT down 2.6%

April 16, 2014

The GlobalDairyTrade index dropped 2.6% in this morning’s auction.

gdt 2










The price of anhydrous milk fat increase .6%; butter dropped 4.9%; butter milk powder dropped 8.6%; cheddar was down 3.3%; milk protein concentrate fell 7%, rennet casein was down 4.3%; skim milk powder went down 4.4% and whole milk powder was down 1.6%.

gdt 3






This doesn’t mean the sky is falling.

The price is still above the long term average.

gdt 1







The lower price is just reflecting greater supply here and overseas, in particular in the USA where a reduction in the demand for crop for biofuels has made cattle feed cheaper.

It does however, mean that sensible dairy farmers will be budgeting on a lower payout next season.

GDT drops 8.9%

April 2, 2014

GlobalDairyTrade’s Price Index dropped 8.9% in this morning’s auction.

It’s the second big drop in a row and reflects increasing supply in other countries.

Northern Hemisphere dairy production is in full swing and a big drop in the need for biofuel in the USA has lowered the cost of cow feed.




Milk price down 4%

March 5, 2014

What goes up can also go down and the price index dropped 4% in this morning’s GlobalDairyTrade auction.


gdt change


gdt 10 yrs


The price of anhydrous milk fat fell 3.5%; butter increased 3.9%; butter milk powder dropped 5.8%; cheddar increased .7%; milk protein concentrated dropped 3.3%; rennet casein increased 2.9%; skim milk powder dropped 3.9% and whole milk powder fell 5.7%.

gdt 4.3.14







GDT price index up .5%

February 5, 2014

GlobalDairyTrade’s Price Index increased .5% in this morning’s auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

GDT 5.2.14

The price of anhydrous milk fat dropped 1.2%, butter increased 2.6%; butter milk powder was down by 1.2%, cheddar dropped 4.3%; lactose was down 2.7%, milk protein concentrate fell 3.3%; rennet casein dropped 3.7%,  and whole milk powder  increased by 1.4%.

Rural round-up

January 24, 2014

Promise of plenty – Nigel Stirling:

This year has the potential to be a vintage one for breaking down barriers to New Zealand’s agricultural trade with the rest of the world.

But don’t break out the champagne just yet.

It is a fine line between success and failure in trade negotiations, which have a habit of falling at the last hurdle. . .

Dam directors keep the faith – Tim Fulton:

The 6.2 magnitude earthquake near Eketahuna had Tim Fulton asking what quakes mean for dams like Ruataniwha in Hawke’s Bay.

The Ruataniwha dam will be strong enough to withstand a large earthquake, project manager Graeme Hansen says.

The planning team had done quake investigations to death, he said.

The Mohaka fault goes through the water-storage scheme’s proposed reservoir area.

“It’s certainly been a bone of contention, or should I say a topic of conversation, around building a water-storage structure on or near a major fault,” Hansen said. . .

Dairying boost tipped for economy – Christopher Adams:

Economists say a combination of rising international dairy prices and favourable farming conditions bode well for New Zealand’s economic growth, which is already expected to outpace most other developed nations this year.

Dairy product prices in Tuesday night’s GlobalDairyTrade auction rose 1.4 per cent from the last sale on January 8, led by surging prices for butter and cheese. Those two products have posed problems for Fonterra as their prices lagged behind whole milk powder.

The average winning price was US$5025 ($6040) a tonne from US$4953 a tonne at the last auction. About 41,024 tonnes of product was sold, down from 46,418 two weeks ago, for about US$206.1 million. . .

Manuka authentication project:

An organisation representing most of the country’s manuka honey producers says it’s got the backing of a major overseas customer for a project authenticating the highly-prized honey.

The Ministry for Primary Industries has begun working on a new guideline for New Zealand’s most valuable honey, after concerns were raised in some overseas markets about false claims and labelling for manuka, which commands top prices for its anti-bacterial and healing qualities.

Meanwhile, the Unique Manuka Factor or Honey Association is collecting samples from around the country to establish a chemical profile of manuka. . .

Looking forward to 2014 – Kirsten Bryant;

There’s been plenty to keep us occupied on the farm over January, so it’s been very much a case of head down. But, out the corner of my eye, I optimistically note that we’ve had great grass growth and improved stock performance.

Year to date, my impression is that, while we don’t have the certainty of price that dairy farmers enjoy, sheep and beef farmers are cautiously optimistic about the year ahead. It’s amazing the effect available feed and forecast rain have on the soul and, consequently, our outlooks. It feels good.

This week, I had the privilege of listening to the inspirational Kevin Biggar – one half of TVNZ’s First Crossings’ duo. Kevin was speaking about his journey from self-admitted couch potato, to Trans-Atlantic rower and South Pole adventurer. . .

Rabbits threatens our gin and tonic: Wild animals are overgrazing on juniper berries:

Wild rabbits are threatening the traditional British gin and tonic by over-grazing on juniper berries – a key ingredient of the drink.

The animals have eaten so many plants that experts fear the juniper could be wiped out in parts of the country.

Now a gin manufacturer has donated £1,000 to Steyning Downland Scheme, a charity working to save the ancient plant which is also under threat from disease.

It will use the money from No.3 London Dry Gin to put up fences around the few remaining junipers near Lancing, West Sussex.

It is hoped the barriers will keep the rabbits out and protect the juniper, which gives gin its distinctive bitter taste. . .

GDT up 1.4% butter, cheese soar

January 22, 2014

The GDT Price Index increased 1.4 in the second GlobalDairyTrade auction of the year boosted by steep rises in the prices paid for butter and cheese.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes



gdt 22.1

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 2.2%; butter soared 10.8%; butter milk was up by 3%; cheddar increased 10.4%; milk protein concentrate rose 7.2% rennet casein increased 4.2%; skim milk powder dropped .5% and whole milk powder eased up .1%.




GDT auction down .8%

January 8, 2014

Dairy prices dipped slightly with a .8% drop in the GlobalDairyTrade price index in the first auction of the year this morning.

Prices are expected to be less buoyant this year.

Demand from Asia is still growing but milk production in the USA is expected to increase.

Demand for corn for fuel there is dropping. That reduces the cost of feed for cattle which is likely to lead to a boost in the supply of milk.


GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

gdt 1.14

The price of anhydrous milk fat dropped 1.8%; butter gained 5%; butter milk powder was up .5%; cheddar increased 1.9%; lactose was up 5.8%, milk protein concentrate rose 5.2%; rennet casein increased by 1.1% skim milk powder fell 3.4% and whole milk powder was down .6%.


GDT milk price up .2%

December 18, 2013

The global Dairy Trade milk price index edged up .2% in this morning’s auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

gdt 18.12

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 4.4%; butter rose 7.9 %; butter milk fat was up 2.2%; cheddar was up 1%; milk protein concentrate was up 3.9%; rennet casein increased 7.3%; skim milk powder was up 1.7% and whole milk powder was down by 1.5%.

GDT Price Index down 1.8%

November 6, 2013

The Price Index in this morning’s GlobalDairyTrade auction dropped 1.8%.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

gdt 6.11





The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 6.9%; butter dropped 7.0%;  butter milk powder was up 1.8%; cheddar was up 1.2%; lactose increased 3.2%;  milk protein concentrate was up by 4.6%; rennet casein and skim milk powder both increased by 5.% and whole milk powder dropped 3.7%.

GDT price index down 1.9%

October 16, 2013

The GlboalDairyTrade Price Index dropped 1.9% in this morning’s auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

The price of anydrous milk fat was down 1.2%, butter dropped 3.5%, butter milk powder dropped 5.2%, cheddar was down 1.7%, lactose was up 1.7%, rennet casein increased 1.5%, skim milk powder was up 0.7% and wholemilk powder was down 2.9%.


GDT price index up 2.4%

October 2, 2013

Global Dairy Trade’s price index rose 2.4% in this morning’s auction.


GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

gdt 3.10

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 2.7%; butter was up 0.1%; butter milk was up 2.7%; cheddar increased 2.3%; lactose rose 14.8%; milk protein concentrate dropped -3.9%; rennet casein was down .8% , skim milk increased 3.9% and whole milk powder was up 2.3%.

100th auction proves GDT’s worth

September 20, 2013

Fonterra’s GlobalDairyTrade passed a significant milestone on Tuesday with its 100th auction.

Global Dairy Trade Director Paul Grave says the 100th successful auction marks a coming of age for the platform which is now in its fifth year of trading and surpassed US$10 billion in aggregate sales earlier this year (July 2013).

“Achieving our 100th trading event proves the success of the online model.  It shows that Global Dairy Trade has matured to become an essential feature of the global dairy industry.  GDT now provides price transparency and highly efficient purchasing for more than 850 registered bidders from 90 countries,” Mr Grave said.

“The strong support for the platform shows we are meeting a real market need to find a robust reference price that reflects true levels of supply and demand in the market,” Mr Grave says.

The platform is now used by six global companies supplying product for sale.  This includes Fonterra (New Zealand), Dairy America (USA), Amul (India), Arla (Denmark), Murray Goulburn (Australia) and Euroserum (France). A typical auction event lasting around two hours will sell enough product to completely fill a container ship; amounting to around  2,500 standard twenty-foot containers, valued at between US$100 and $250 million.

Global Dairy Trade operates at arm’s length from its owner Fonterra.  Fortnightly auctions are conducted on behalf of GDT by Boston-based, NASDAQ-listed CRA International in accordance with market rules monitored by an independent advisory board of sellers and buyers. 

“We are delighted that Global Dairy Trade is today centre-stage of a vibrant global dairy industry which is experiencing annual demand growth of well over 2.5%.  We will be seeking to continuously improve our service as technology evolves over the years ahead,” Mr Grave says.

There was concern and scepticism from within New Zealand and abroad about the on-line auction system when it was first launched but this milestone proves it’s working and shows its worth to Fonterra, its shareholders and suppliers and customers.

The company trades only a small proportion of its product through the auction but it is a useful indicator of demand and price.

It’s also used as a benchmark by other companies here and overseas.

When we were in Holland last year the latest GDT auction results featured on the front page of a farming paper.

GDT milk price up .3%

September 18, 2013

The GlobalDairyTrade price index increased .3% in this morning’s auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

GDT 17.9

The price of anhydrous milk fat dropped 3.3%; butter increased 5.2%; butter milk powder was up 2.2%; cheddar increased 1.0%; milk protein concentrate was down .6%; rennet casein was down 4%; skim milk powder dropped 1.7% and whole milk powder was up by 1.1%.

GDT price index slips 1.1%

September 4, 2013

The GlobalDairyTrade price index slipped 1.1% in this morning’s auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes


gdt 4.9

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 3.1%; butter was up 2.7%; cheddar was down 3.2%; milk protein concentrate slipped 3.8%; rennet casein was down 2.1%; skim milk powder lost .8% and whole milk powder was down 1.7%.

The average winning price was $US4,891 per metric tonne.



Rural round-up

August 24, 2013

Farming Crises “hide ministry’s good work’ – Jon Morgan:

Ministry for Primary Industries officials are back in minister Nathan Guy’s good books.

Three months ago Guy upbraided the ministry for paperwork mistakes that left hundreds of tonnes of frozen meat stranded at China’s borders.

“I’m very disappointed in my officials,” he said. “Issuing export certification is really their core business and I’m disappointed in how this issue has come to bear.”

A ministry review pinpointed an unnotified change in templates for certifying exports as the cause of the holdup, which has now been cleared, and that this was compounded by a failure to inform senior managers and ministers quickly. . .

Fonterra achieves record GDT sales in August:

Fonterra today confirmed that it has achieved record sales and revenues from its two August GlobalDairyTrade (GDT) auctions.

Fonterra achieved its highest-ever monthly revenue through GDT in August, selling 109,664 metric tonnes, worth NZD 685 million.

Fonterra Chief Executive, Theo Spierings, said, “The past two GDT events show continued confidence in our products and strong demand from many of our key markets. . .

Opportunity for cross-agricultural collaboration:

Joint teaching and research in animal science and agronomy brought together Lincoln University and China’s Henan Agricultural University on Monday 19 August to discuss further opportunities to promote academic collaboration and exchange.

Located in Zhengzhou, China, Henan Agricultural University (HAU) is a world leading interdisciplinary research and teaching university that maintains its original guiding principles of serving the needs of the agricultural sector, rural areas and farmers. 

“Lincoln University has regularly received postgraduate students from Henan Agricultural University and the similarities of both institutions provide an excellent opportunity for further engagement,” says Lincoln University Director, International, Strategy and Marketing, Julia Innocente-Jones. . .

Red Meat Profit Partnership appoints Chairman:

The Red Meat Profit Partnership (RMPP), a consortium of red meat sector participants completing a Primary Growth Partnership agreement with the Crown, has appointed Malcolm Bailey as its Independent Chairman.

Bailey, well known in New Zealand agribusiness, is a former National President of Federated Farmers, a former Special Agricultural Trade Envoy for the Crown and a current Director of Fonterra. He is also a Westpac NZ Ltd Director, Chairman of the Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand and a member of the Food & Agriculture International Trade Policy Council (IPC), based in Washington DC. . .

Bootcamp brings together economic powerhouses:

The Primary Sector CEO Bootcamp conference over the last two days has been a major success, says Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy.

“Over the last two days in Wellington this conference has brought together 35 top agribusiness leaders and five Government agency Chief Executives into one room, representing 80% of all our primary sector exports,” says Mr Guy.

“The Bootcamp initiative started in 2012 and has involved CEOs working together to grow our export earnings and take advantage of major opportunities around the world.

“There is renewed determination to double our primary sector exports to $64 billion by 2025 and establish New Zealand as a premium producer of food and fibre. This is an ambitious but very achievable goal, with the right policies and leadership from both Government and industry. . .

MPI completes large compliance operation:

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Compliance Officers have just completed a far-reaching operation in the greater Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Coromandel regions.

Codenamed “Operation Nevada” officers spent two days last week undertaking a wide range of inspections targeting black market meat, black-market fish and maintaining a watch across the animal welfare sector. More than 50 MPI Compliance staff were involved in the operation which was carried out over the 14th and 15th of August.

MPI officers visited multiple sale yards across Waikato to liaise with farmers and other stakeholders and ensure compliance with the Animal Welfare Act 1999 and National Animal Identification and Tracing (NAIT) requirements. A number of visits to farms were carried out for the animal welfare part of the operation reinforcing codes of welfare. . .

Ballance announces new Chief Financial Officer:

Ballance Agri-Nutrients has announced Richard Hopkins as its new Chief Financial Officer, succeeding David O’Reilly who has recently retired.

Chief Executive Larry Bilodeau says Mr O’Reilly made a significant contribution to the business throughout his 24 years of service, and he has left Ballance in good hands with Mr Hopkins.

Under Mr O’Reilly’s guidance as Chief Financial Officer Ballance has evolved and grown to become one of New Zealand’s ‘Top 40’ companies.

“When David started we were a relatively small business with revenue less than $100 million, and almost two decades later he has helped our revenue grow much closer to $1 billion. I thank him for his immense contribution and dedication to the co-operative,” said Mr Bilodeau. . .

GDT milk price up

August 21, 2013

An increase in the GlobalDairyTrade  Price Index in this morning’s auction indicates buyers are reassured our milk is safe.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

GDT 21.8

The price of anhydrous milk fat rose 7.1%, butter was up 3.3%; butter milk dropped 3.1%, cheddar increased 0.9%, milk protein was up 1.5%, rennet casein increased 1.9%, skim milk was down .7% and whole milk increased 2.7%.

This is the second auction since the precautionary recall of products containing a small batch of Fonterra’s whey protein concentrate. The small drop in the first one and small increase today are well within the normal ups and downs.

Small fall in dairy price

August 7, 2013

The contaminated whey scare did not had the disastrous impact on last night’s GlobalDairyTrade auction that many had feared.

The trade weighted price dropped only 2.4% which isn’t a big change in comparison to others this year.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes


Rennet casein was the only product to increase in price (1.2%)  but whole milk powder, on which the payout is largely based, was down only 1.6% .

The price of anhydrous milk fat dropped 4.9%; butter dropped 5.5%; butter milk was down 0.4%; cheddar was down 4.4%; and skim milk powder fell 3%.

Prices are still well above the long-term average and the relatively small fall in the trade weighted index indicates that customers still trust Fonterra’s products.

Rural round-up

July 19, 2013

Whole milk prices bode well for profits - Jamie Gray:

Dairy farmers could be looking at another record year for profit in 2013-14 after a 4.9 per cent rise in GlobalDairyTrade prices was recorded at the overnight auction, banks said.

Prices for whole milk powder – the most important line for New Zealand producers – were up 7.7 per cent from the the last auction at US$5058 a tonne.

ANZ Bank said prices gained as buyers scrambled to refill their inventory after last summer’s drought and a seasonal low in New Zealand supply, which would put upward pressure on Fonterra’s $7 per kg of milksolids milk price payout forecast for this season. . .

$3.8m after tax loss for Blue Sky  – Sally Rae:

Blue Sky Meats chairman Graham Cooney, whose company has recorded a $3.8 million after-tax loss for the year ending March, says the solutions to the red meat industry model problems are in New Zealand, not in the marketplace.

The result compared with a $449,149 loss last year and a $3.6 million profit the previous year. . .

German vet enjoys shearing experience - Sally Rae:

Cordula Ihring is one determined woman.

The qualified German vet has traded a stethoscope for a shearing hand-piece as she works for a Kurow-based shearing gang.

During the morning smoko break at Peter and Pauline Dodd’s Tapui farm, in North Otago, recently, Ms Ihring (28), known as Cordy, spoke of her passion for shearing. . .

Looking ahead with AbacusBio – Sally Rae:

Since joining AbacusBio on an internship at the end of her university studies, Grace Johnstone admits she ”hasn’t really looked back”.

After spending time last year travelling and working overseas, Ms Johnstone (24) returned to the consultancy and new venture development company this year as an associate consultant.

Brought up on a sheep and beef farm near Outram, the former Columba College head prefect graduated from the University of Otago in 2011 with a double bachelor’s degree in science, majoring in genetics, and law. . . .

A heavy load to carry for native kōura: Amber Mcewan:

This winter, in a cold, clear stream near you, a certain freshwater crustacean has a heavy load to carry. The female New Zealand freshwater crayfish, or kōura, spends the winter months carrying large eggs (up to 200 of them!) attached to the underside of her abdomen. The eggs hatch after 3 or 4 months, but motherhood doesn’t end there for the female kōura – the tiny babies (miniature replicas of their parents) hang on to their mother and she carries them everywhere she goes until they are around 4 mm long, at which point they let go of mum and head off to seek their aquatic fortunes. . . .

Higher truffle production predicted in WA:

Truffle growers in Western Australia are on track to harvest record yields this season.

It is only halfway through their harvesting season but producers are predicting an increase of 30% on last year.

Manjimup Wine and Truffle Co chief executive Gavin Booth expects to produce more than four tonnes of the fungus.

“We’ve got about 1.8 tonnes of saleable truffle,” he said. “I anticipate that to double, so we should get around 4.4 tonne.” . . .

Milk price edges up

July 3, 2013

The trade weighted price of milk increased .7% in this morning’s GlobalDairyTrade auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes


gdt 2.7

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 1.2%; butter was down 5.7%; butter milk powder rose 6%; cheddar dropped 3.7%; rennet casein increased 7.9% skim milk powder was up by 3.1% and whole milk powder inched up .1%.

GDT milk price up 1.1%

June 19, 2013

The trade weighted index went up by 1.1% in this morning’s GlobalDairyTrade auction.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 1.7%, butter was up 4.7%; butter milk powder was down 2.2%; cheddar dropped 6.5%; skim milk powder was up 3.9% and whole milk powder increased 2.2%.


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