The GlobalDairyTrade price index increased by 3.4% in this morning’s auction.
However, whole milk which has the biggest influence on the farm gate price, dropped 1.7%.
The GlobalDairyTrade price index increased by 3.4% in this morning’s auction.
However, whole milk which has the biggest influence on the farm gate price, dropped 1.7%.
Tap turned on at Hororata irrigation scheme – Annabelle Tukia:
The tap has officially been turned on for one of the country’s largest irrigation projects.
The Central Plains water scheme will irrigate more than 20,000 hectares of Canterbury farmland.
One Hororata farmer says the massive scheme, which runs off the Rakaia River, will enable him and his neighbours to completely transform their operations.
Rodney Booth has waited a long time to turn the irrigators on at his Hororata farm. . .
New Zealand earned $2.3 billion more from exports than we spent on imports during the year ended June 2015, Statistics New Zealand said today.
In the year to June 2015, total exports of goods and services were $67.5 billion, while total imports were $65.1 billion.
Dairy remains New Zealand’s largest export commodity, earning $12.0 billion in the June 2015 year. However, this was down from $15.8 billion in the June 2014 year. Spending by international visitors to New Zealand (travel exports) increased $2.4 billion, reaching $11.7 billion in the June 2015 year.
“Dairy and travel are New Zealand’s biggest export earners,” international statistics senior manager Jason Attewell said. “A fall in dairy exports to China, combined with the increase in expenditure by overseas visitors to New Zealand, has narrowed the gap between the two.” . .
App helps keep hives humming – Sally Rae:
Brice Horner gets a buzz about educating others about beekeeping.
Now the Dunedin police officer has developed a phone app that helps beekeepers identify whether they have the destructive bacterial disease American foulbrood (AFB) in their hives.
AFB kills bee larvae and infected hives have to be destroyed by burning, as the disease is very difficult to combat. After destroying the bee larvae, spores could survive outside a bee colony for more than 35 years.
It is a serious issue, and beekeepers are legally required to advise the AFB Management Agency within seven days of noticing an outbreak and to destroy the disease by burning within the same period. . .
(BusinessDesk) – New Zealand dairy farmers bracing for the lowest payout in a decade probably won’t welcome the latest analysis of global trends in the industry – their counterparts in every other dairy-producing country are being paid more.
An expected uplift in dairy prices in the overnight GlobalDairyTrade auction won’t change the fact Kiwi dairy farmers are the lowliest paid. AgriHQ analysed milk prices from around the world converted to NZ$/kilogram of milk solids to allow valid comparisons, although some dairy farmers incomes in other countries are boosted by subsidies and support schemes.
Fonterra’s forecast farmgate milk price, which is the price setter in the New Zealand dairy industry, is $3.85/kgMS for the current season, the lowest in a decade. That compares to China at the other end of the scale at $11/kgMS, the United States at $8.15/kgMS, Argentina at $7.57/kgMS, and the UK at $6.95/kgMS. Of the countries analysed, Ireland’s payout of $6.10/kgMS was the closest to New Zealand’s. . .
(BusinessDesk) – OceanaGold Corp expects 2015 production to increase while costs fall after the gold miner takes control of Waihi Gold Mine later this year.
The acquisition of the Waihi mine from Newmont Mining Corp is awaiting approval from the Overseas Investment Office this month, and once completed, OceanaGold expects to assume the economic benefits and costs associated with Waihi from July 1, the Melbourne-based miner said in a statement. The company increased its 2015 production estimates, and reduced its costs forecast to reflect lower copper and diesel prices and a weaker New Zealand dollar, it said. . .
(BusinessDesk) – Sanford, New Zealand’s largest listed fishing group, will quit its underperforming Pacific tuna business and put the unit’s fleet up for sale.
The Auckland-based company sold its San Nanumea vessel and is in talks with a potential buyer of San Nikunau, its other Pacific tuna ship, after reviewing the viability of the business, Sanford said in a statement. On April 9, it entered into a conditional agreement to sell both international purse seiner vessels, according to Sanford’s interim report released in June. . .
(BusinessDesk) – Rural Equities, the farming group majority-owned by the Cushing family, posted a 27 percent decline in annual earnings as milk prices plummeted.
The Hastings-based company said operating earnings before interest and tax fell to $4.67 million in the year ended June 30, from $6.43 million a year earlier as Fonterra Cooperative Group slashed its milk price payout to $4.40 per kilogram of milk solids from $8.40/kgMS the previous year. While that impacted its seven dairy farms, the company said its Waikato Puketotara sheep and beef property had a record year and it had steady income from leasing 15 of its 25 farms.
“Operating earnings were satisfactory given the substantial reduction in milk price,” said executive chairman David Cushing. “The company’s portfolio, with a mixture of directly operated and leased farms and diversity by property type and geography, helped provide balance.” . .
An $89,700 grant from the Community Environment Fund for the restoration of the Whangawehi stream on the Mahia Peninsula was announced today by Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith during a visit to the catchment.
“New Zealand has a major challenge to improve the management of our waterways, which has to be achieved stream by stream, river by river and lake by lake. The key to the success of these restoration programmes is getting all parties – landowners, iwi and hapū, district and regional councils as well as the Government – working together. This has been achieved on this project and that is why the Government is providing funding support,” Dr Smith says. . .
Fonterra farmers can now apply for Fonterra Co-operative Support, a loan to help them deal with the current challenging conditions.
Chairman John Wilson said Fonterra is well placed to help its farmers because of the Co-operative’s underlying strength.
“Being able to help our farmers is all about standing together as a Co-operative and using our collective strength to get through these tough times,” said Mr Wilson. “We have had a lot of interest from farmers who appreciate what the Co-operative is trying to do for them to assist them with their farming businesses in a tough financial climate, and we are anticipating a large number of applications.” . . .
More bad news on the dairy front this morning with a drop of 10.7% in Fonterra’s GlobalDairyTrade price index.
Fonterra’s board will review the forecast milk price next month.
It won’t be going up and could well go down.
The dollar fell to a fresh five-year low in the wake of the GDT result.
The kiwi touched 65.81 US cents, and was trading at 65.92 cents at 8am in Wellington, from 67.05 cents at 5pm yesterday. The trade-weighted index sank to 70.01 from 70.88 yesterday.
The New Zealand dollar dropped sharply after dairy product prices sank an average 10.7 percent to a six-year low in the GDT auction, with the key whole milk powder price dropping 13.1 percent to US$1,848 a tonne. Dairy prices have remained lower for longer amid higher global supplies in New Zealand, Europe and the US, weak demand in China and an import ban in Russia. The weaker prices come as New Zealand production is rising heading into the country’s peak supply period in October, raising concern about the impact on the nation’s economy. . .
We can be grateful we have our own floating currency and aren’t like Greece which is tied to the Euro.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand won’t be progressing a joint market development model with meat processors in the next commodity levy cycle from 2016-2022.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Chairman, James Parsons said meat processors have decided not to progress the proposed collaborative 50:50 funded market development entity focusing on country of origin promotion. This was a proposition worked up by Beef + Lamb New Zealand in conjunction with meat companies over the past two years.
“We’ve had a lot of dialogue and constructive discussions with processors, considering how market development could be funded and delivered in the future. Naturally, after all the hard work, it’s disappointing that we weren’t able to get agreement. However, we respect processors preference for their own commercially-focused marketing given, they are the ones who sell the product. What became apparent over the two years of one-on-one meetings and workshops with meat companies was the wide ranging views on how we should promote New Zealand’s sheepmeat and beef.” . .
Sign dairy prices bottoming out – Sally Rae:
The latest GlobalDairyTrade auction results offers ”the mildest of encouragements” that global dairy prices might be bottoming out, economists say.
While the overall price index was down 1.3% this week, it was also the smallest drop since the latest downturn in prices began in March.
But it still ”shed no real light” on whether prices would recover enough over the course of the season to meet Fonterra’s milk price forecast, Westpac senior economist Michael Gordon said. . .
Mushroom farm faces prosecution – Simon Hendery:
Long-established Havelock North business Te Mata Mushrooms is being prosecuted on charges carrying a maximum $600,000 fine for multiple alleged breaches of its resource consent.
The Brookvale Rd company has been the subject of regular complaints about the odour it produces which has allegedly wafted over its boundary in breach of its consent conditions.
It has also been accused of failing to build a multi-million dollar building to contain its compost-making facilities – another requirement under its resource consent. . .
A new National Environmental Standard for Plantation Forestry to simplify and standardise Resource Management Act requirements was proposed today by Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith and Associate Primary Industries Minister Jo Goodhew at Paengaroa Forest in the Bay of Plenty.
“The current system for environmental regulation of forestry is complex and confusing with thousands of different rules across New Zealand’s 78 councils. This proposed standard will simplify the rules and save the forestry industry millions in compliance costs while ensuring environmental issues like wilding pines, protecting spawning fish and erosion are better managed,” Dr Smith says. . .
Food Safety Minister Jo Goodhew has today announced the Government’s decision to introduce a new policy around the sale of raw milk to consumers.
“Raw milk is a high risk food, particularly for children, the elderly, pregnant women and those with compromised immune systems,” says Mrs Goodhew.
“After extensive consultation and review, the Government decision will allow farmers to continue to sell raw milk directly to the public from the farm and via home deliveries.
“I recognise that people feel strongly about their right to buy and drink raw milk. Equally, I am also aware of the strong concerns about the public health risks associated with drinking raw milk and the potential risk to New Zealand’s food safety reputation. . .
Federated Farmers wants to see the fine print of the rules around selling raw milk before farmers will know it its worthwhile.
The Food Safety Minister Jo Goodhew has announced farmers will still be able to sell raw milk to consumers, and the government will not be implementing plans to abolish raw milk sales, restrict their volume or prohibit home deliveries.
Dairy spokesperson Andrew Hoggard says farmers value having a range of selling options. . .
Although the number of horticulture students has increased, it is still not enough to satisfy demands. Now, industry leaders are connecting with Massey University in an effort to grow graduates in the sector.
Massey University offers the only horticulture degree course at university level in New Zealand. One of the partnerships it has is with Horticulture New Zealand.
Senior business manager at Horticulture New Zealand Sue Pickering gives a guest lecture to students taking the first-year Horticulture Production paper. . .
Seeka Kiwifruit Industries has packed a record number of trays in the just-completed 2015 kiwifruit harvest, handling more than 26.3 million class 1 export trays, compared to 20.0 million class 1 trays in 2014. The total volume of all classes of kiwifruit is expected to exceed 27.4 million trays this year. This compares to the 24.944m forecast to shareholders at ASM held on 28 April 2015.
Both Hayward [Green] and Gold class 1 volumes are up. Total Hayward packed or in store for 2015 is 21.8 million trays compared to 18.1 million in the previous year. Gold volumes in 2015 totalled 4.3 million trays and compare against 1.7 million in the previous year. Seeka also packed approximately 200,000 trays of the Zespri G14 SweetGreen. . .
Fonterra’s announcement that it is holding the season’s forecast payout at $4.70 with an estimated dividend range taking it to $4.95 – $5.05 for the current season will have disappointed many after successive increases in the GlobaDairyTrade auction and commentators had suggested an increase to $5.
Chairman John Wilson said that although dairy commodity prices had gone up, the increase was not sufficient to raise the forecast Farmgate Milk Price at this time.
“Since December, GDT prices for Whole Milk Powder have increased 45 per cent and Skim Milk Powder prices have increased 13 per cent,” Mr Wilson said.
“There continues to be significant volatility in international commodity prices. New Zealand volumes are down, with continued uncertainty in milk production due to climatic conditions in New Zealand with droughts in Canterbury, Marlborough, Central Otago and North Otago.
“Today’s forecast reflects the Board and management’s best estimates at this time. We are advising farmers to continue to be cautious with budgeting and we will update them as the season progresses.”
Chief Executive Theo Spierings said Fonterra was sticking to its strategy, with confidence in the long-term fundamentals of dairy demand.
“We will provide a full business update when we report our Interim Result on 25 March,” Mr Spierings said.
Fonterra is required to consider its forecast Farmgate Milk Price every quarter as a condition of the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act (DIRA). . .
Fonterra Shareholders’ Council Chairman, Ian Brown said the Co-operative’s announcement to maintain the 2014/15 forecast Farmgate Milk Price at $4.70 per kg/MS will be a relief for Farmers.
Mr Brown: “On-farm conditions have been really tough throughout the country and Farmers will be pleased that the recent downward trend has stopped.
“It has also been encouraging to see GlobalDairyTrade, and in particular Whole Milk Powder prices, increase significantly recently and given what took place late last year it will go some way to building confidence on farm.”
Mr Brown said that Farmers will be looking with great interest when the forecast dividend is announced at the interim results in late March.
“Our Farmers will want to see the strategy, which is key to adding value long term, deliver a return relative to the significant investment they have made and continue to make in their Co-op.
“In the interim, as always, the Council urges Farmers to be prudent in their financial planning to ensure they place their businesses in the best possible shape for next season.”
There is time for an increase but any is likely to be modest.
Most of this season’s milk has already been sold and while the outlook is more optimistic it is still volatile.
The cut in Fonterra’s payout isn’t good news but it isn’t the disaster that many are proclaiming.
Nor was the timing the political conspiracy that Winston Peters suspects:
Just four days after the General Election the true state of the dairy industry is revealed – returns for milk that the New Zealand economy is reliant on have slumped.
“Questions need to be asked by New Zealand voters on why they were not informed about this serious decline before Election Day,” says New Zealand First Leader, Rt Hon Winston Peters.
“The drop in payout is a $5 billion hit to the New Zealand economy and 2 per cent off nominal GDP.
“It appears the government and Fonterra joined forces to keep the facts hidden from voters? . . .
Fonterra makes announcements on its previous season’s final payout and any revision to the current one at this time every year.
The record final payout for last season was no surprise. Nor was the cut in this season’s forecast.
Anyone with even cursory knowledge of the global milk market was expecting it after successive drops in the GlobalDairyTrade price index and with the knowledge that the milk supply here and around the world was outstripping demand.
Lower income will impact on farmers, those who service and supply them and the wider economy but the news isn’t all bad.
The value of our dollar fell after Fonterra’s announcement which will help all exporters.
And while dairy prices are falling, demand and prices for sheep meat and beef are improving:
Rabobank New Zealand CEO Ben Russell said the softening in overall rural confidence was clearly a reflection of the impact of the bearish global dairy outlook and lower milk prices on dairy farmer sentiment.
“Falling dairy commodity prices are the overwhelming factor at play here. At the time of the survey being taken, the globalDairyTrade auction prices fell six per cent, taking them down 45 per cent from their February peak,” Mr Russell said.
“And with global dairy supplies continuing to increase from all key exporting regions, a significant price recovery is not imminent.
“That said though, farm commodity prices move in cycles and, clearly, dairy commodity prices are entering a lower part of the cycle right now. While this is always a difficult time, the important thing to remember is the medium to long-term picture for the dairy industry is strong.”
Mr Russell said dairy farmers were also cautious with the dairy industry approaching a critical time in the year, with the peak production and selling period for New Zealand milk just weeks away.
The dampened confidence among dairy farmers was reflected in their business performance expectations in the coming 12 months.
Dairy farmers had the most pessimistic outlook of their own farm business performance. However, Mr Russell said, it should be noted this was coming off record highs for business performance expectations among dairy producers over the past 12 months.
The latest survey found almost half of dairy farmers surveyed (47 per cent) expect the performance of their own farm business to worsen in the coming 12 months, up from 30 per cent with that expectation in the previous quarter. Just 20 per cent expect an improvement in performance, compared with 27 per cent previously. A total of 32 per cent expected performance to remain stable.
While there was also a tempering in sentiment among beef and sheep farmers, after reaching three-year record highs in the previous survey, confidence in this sector remained at overall strong levels.
Mr Russell said lamb prices were up on the previous season and beef prices were currently hitting record highs due to tight global supply.
In terms of expectations of their own businesses, the number of beef and sheep farmers expecting improved performance declined from 57 per cent last quarter to 48 per cent this survey. However, the percentage expecting their farm business performance to worsen remained stable, at just seven per cent. A total of 42 per cent anticipated business performance would remain at the same level.
Despite the decline in overall confidence, New Zealand farmers’ investment intentions were overall stable, the Rabobank survey showed.
Sheep and beef farmers increased their investment appetite – with 43 per cent indicating they intend to increase investment in their farm businesses over the next 12 months, up from 37 per cent previously. Only six per cent intended to decrease investment (compared with four per cent in the past quarter).
For dairy however, investment appetite had waned, with 21 per cent intending to invest less in their businesses (up from just seven per cent with that view in the previous survey) and 20 per cent expecting to increase investment (down from 27 per cent). This was the lowest level of dairy farmer investment intentions in more than five years (since August 2009).
Mr Russell said this change in sector investment dynamics may be an early indication the decline in the national sheep flock and the rate of dairy farm conversions were slowing. . .
Federated Farmers says farmers will be down but far from out:
Fonterra Cooperative Group farmer shareholders will welcome confirmation that the 2013/14 season has ended exactly as promised with a total payout of $8.50 per kilogram of milksolids (kg/MS). That good news is balanced by a sharp revision downwards in the 2014/15 forecast.
“The 2014/15 season which offered so much has turned into a breakeven one for not just Fonterra suppliers but the entire industry,” says Andrew Hoggard, Federated Farmers Dairy chairperson.
“Like Synlait’s revision this week, there is a ‘good news and bad news’ dimension in this. The good news is that we take the 2013/14 confirmed payout and the lowest revised forecast for 2014/15, we are talking an average total of $7kg/MS across the two seasons.
“A $5.30 kg/MS milkprice is also a lot higher than some commentators had expected if the forecast sticks. If being a little word with a big meaning.
“Losing 70 cents kg/MS on the milkprice is really going to hurt. Farmers will be kicking capital works into touch and will be pruning herds to rid themselves of any passengers.
“Speaking to DairyNZ, farm working expenses this season, before depreciation and interest payments, are expected to be around $4 kg/MS this season. Feed, fertiliser as well as repairs and maintenance are going to be cut back. We’ll only do what needs to be done.
“What we know from DairyNZ is that two-thirds of dairy farms have working expenses of between $3.25 and $4.75 kg/MS. Of course when you start paying back the bank manager, the average cash costs on-farm head up to $5.40 kg/MS.
“As you can tell from what the forecast currently is, the current surplus is a wafer thin 15 to 25 cents kg/MS. Expressed as retail milk, that’s about 1.25 to 2 cents a litre this season.
“It means that upwards of a quarter of our guys will be making a loss this season.
“We also believe that unlike the Global Financial Crisis, dairy farmers have been listening and have focussed on building financial freeboard. Sadly for some farmers, they’ll have to dip into that big time.
“Federated Farmers’ advice is to watch costs but to keep your bank, farm consultant, accountant and family fully in the loop. Take a no surprises approach to get through.
“This season has been a perfect one for global milk with ideal conditions everywhere compounded by civil unrest in the Middle East and dislocation of European milk due to what is happening in Eastern Ukraine.
“We can only hope there is no more bad news but I am optimistic we may be back above $6 kg/MS for 2015/16,” Mr Hoggard concluded.
Agricultural prices are always cyclical.
Dairy farmers creamed it last season, now it’s sheep and beef farmers who have a brighter outlook. Both know that what goes up comes down and what comes down goes up again, sooner or later.
Labour could hardly contain its glee at the drop in the prices in yesterday’s GlobalDairyTrade auction:
“Another massive drop in milk prices overnight shows New Zealand needs an Economic Upgrade to limit its overreliance on the dairy industry, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.
“Since February, milk prices have collapsed by 41 per cent, which suggests the short-lived economic recovery may have already ended. . .
“New Zealand is too reliant on one industry – riding the wave of commodity prices is not a long-term solution to grow jobs and incomes. . .
But while crying crocodile tears over the milk price it was announcing a tax that will hit dairy farmers:
. . . “We believe that the use of water for irrigation is a privilege, not an inalienable right. A resource rental is the best tool for making sure fresh water is used efficiently. However we will support proposals for water storage and irrigation schemes provided they have a broad consensus from their communities.
“Labour will use resource rentals to pay for irrigation schemes rather than paying for them out of tax and asset sales. . .
Individuals and communities already have a say in any water storage and irrigation schemes through the resource consent process.
The initial stages of any irrigation scheme are the most expensive for irrigation companies and water users.
Resource rental is just another name for another tax which will add costs without benefits, make irrigation schemes less viable, production more expensive and lead to increases in food prices.
The Green Party was equally quick to seize on the fall in dairy prices for political purposes:
Falling dairy prices are highlighting the danger of National’s economic strategy that focuses on the export of a few, simple commodities, the Green Party said today. . .
“National’s economic strategy has simplified our economy and concentrated our exports on a few, low-value-added commodities,” said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman.
“National has bet the farm on the farm and it isn’t working. A growing reliance on one or two commodity exports has made our economy more vulnerable to commodity price swings. . .
Both parties either don’t understand or are ignoring the fact that the increase in dairying had nothing to do with government policy.
Farmers made individual decisions on converting farms in response to market signals.
They did so in the knowledge that in the market prices go up and they go down.
They went up last season because demand was high.
They are going down now because supply has increased.
Both parties are also conveniently ignoring the statistics.
Dairy is important but it accounted for only 21% of our exports in 2012 and has gone up only a little since then.
The risk for dairy isn’t current government policies but those a Labour/Green government would impose including a carbon tax:
. . . Agriculture – which is currently exempt from the ETS – would pay a reduced rate of $12.50 per tonne. This works out as an 12.5 per cent hit on farmers’ income. This includes 2 per cent on the working expenses of the average farm. A Berl Economics report, released with the policy, said dairying will be ”adversely affected.”
But it adds: ”However, at the currently projected pay-out for milk solids, even dairy farms in the lowest decile would remain well above break even in the face of an emissions levy.” . .
That payout projection is much lower now.
When he announced the policy, Norman said dairy farmers could afford it.
It wouldn’t be wise to hold your breath while waiting for him to axe that tax because they can’t afford it now.
Labour and the Greens are simply anti-dairy.
They are vociferous about the costs, ignore the benefits and take no notice of the efforts farmers are making to protect and enhance water and soils.
Changes likely in lakes camping – David Bruce:
Thousands of campers who pour in to Waitaki lakes camp sites during summer face some major changes in management by the Waitaki District Council.
Most of the camps could be handed over to private operators under leases or contracts, but before any final decisions are made, people will be asked what they want.
That is likely to be contentious. Similar proposals in the past have caused consternation among some campers.
But they could also look at the Mackenzie District Council’s Haldon Arm Camp, which is administered by the Haldon Arm Reserve Trust Board, made up of campers. . .
Water deal celebrated – Sally Brooker:
Compromise and co-operation are being hailed as the main ingredients in a South Canterbury agreement on nitrogen limits.
Farmers in the Lower Waitaki-South Coastal Canterbury catchment had asked their Environment Canterbury zone committee for more time to work on allocating nitrogen emissions, within the maximum already set to meet the goals of a healthy environment and vibrant economy.
Since February, the farmers have held more than 10 meetings, with ECan supplying technical advisers. After fearing they would not agree, they eventually did.” . . .
Consumer demand in East and South East Asia for high value foods and beverages is driving export growth and diversification, a new Government report shows.
‘What does Asia Want for Dinner? Emerging Market Opportunities for New Zealand food & beverages in East & South East Asia’ was released today by Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy.
The report finds that New Zealand’s overall food and beverage export performance to Asia is excellent; performing strongly in dairy, as well as in meat, seafood, produce and processed foods.
“Asia is the fastest growing food market in the world and is increasingly important for New Zealand exports”, Mr Joyce says. . .
New Zealand’s Māori agribusiness programmes are on show this week, as delegates from Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies visit New Zealand to address common barriers to rural economic development. Through case studies and on-farm visits, the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will share experiences learned while helping to build the capability of New Zealand’s rural economic development.
The visiting delegates from Peru, Indonesia, Japan, China, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines will attend a two-day APEC PPFS Rural Development workshop from 22-24 July 2014, hosted by MPI and the Northland Māori agribusiness partners.
“Food security is a common APEC challenge with increasing demands and a need to focus on sustainable productivity,” says MPI’s Deputy Director-General Ben Dalton. . .
People should not be in any hurry to write off dairy farming just because prices have taken a dive, MyFarm executive director Andrew Watters says.
The average whole milk powder price in the Fonterra GlobalDairyTrade auctions has fallen by 38 percent since February.
Dairy farmers and economists say with the recent sharp drop in prices, it is inevitable Fonterra’s $7 per kilogram of milksolids price forecast will come down – one predicted as low as $6.
But Mr Watters said predictions of the end of the good times in the dairy industry were premature.
He pointed out that Fonterra only sold only about a third of its product at the auction, and that volumes at recent auctions had been low.
The positive, longer-term outlook for dairy farming had not changed, he said. . .
Grow Movie – A Great Documentary Which Outlines Young Urbanites Turning To Farming – Milking on the Moove:
I watched the Grow Movie the other night.
It’s a documentary that tells the story of how young urban people are being attracted to farming.
The movie follows a few young farmers in the US state of Georgia. We learn how they found themselves farming & why they love it.
Most of the people were highly educated with degrees in finance, engineering & soil science etc, but they have chosen the small scale rural lifestyle. . .
Two young biosecurity sniffers were introduced to the world today, along with a new type of detector dog and a new home for the Ministry for Primary Industries’ (MPI) Auckland-based canine team.
Beagle puppies Darcie (girl) and Darwin (boy), collectively known as D-litter, were born by caesarean in May to working detector dog Zuma under the MPI detector dog breeding programme.
Steve Gilbert, MPI Director Border Clearance Services says the MPI breeding programme “provides a cost-effective way of producing fit-for-purpose biosecurity detector dogs”.
The programme has produced 27 litters since 1996 and nearly 80 percent of the individual puppies have become successful biosecurity detector dogs. . .
New Zealand premium wine sales soar in the UK market
New Zealand wine has become the number 2 country of origin in the UK market for wine sold over £7 according to the latest Nielsen data (MAT 21-6-14). New Zealand now sells 18% of all wines sold in this premium price segment, having overtaken Australia and now sits behind France.
The latest statistics also show New Zealand’s average price per bottle has increased to £7.34 from £6.79 – an 8.1% increase (Nielsen MAT 21-6-14). . . . .
New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers Incorporated (NZKGI) has welcomed the Government’s plans to get more Kiwis into seasonal work, and its decision to increase the annual Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) cap to a total of 9000 workers.
NZKGI President, Neil Trebilco, says this boost to seasonal workers is essential in delivering the industry’s forecasted future growth.
“The kiwifruit industry is recovering quickly from Psa and is poised for big future growth. Over the next few years we are going to see a significant increase in Gold3 volume. . . .
The GlobalDairyTrade price index fell 4.2% in yesterday’s auction, the eight fall in a row.
That’s a reflection on increased supply of milk here and overseas.
It’s not a reason for panic.
Fonterra’s opening forecast for this season of $7 is the fourth highest.
The value of our dollar declined after the announcement which might be of comfort for those who think it’s too high.
That’s all of the opposition, most of whom are at best not very enthusiastic about dairying.
A conspiracy theorist might think their antipathy to dairying is, at least unconsciously, linked to their desire to erode the value of everyone’s earnings by devaluing our currency.
Fonterra will announce its forecast payout for the 2014/15 season next week.
This graph showing the relationship between GlobalDairyTrade auction prices and the payout give a good indication of where it’s likely to go:
The milk price has shadowed the GDT price index until the last few months when the index has fallen but the payout has remained higher.
Even the most optimistic forecasts for the coming season indicate a fall from the 2013/14 record payout.
This graph reinforces that and there’s speculation the new season’s inaugural forecast could be down by more than $1.50, to $7 per kilogram of milk solids (kg ms).
. . . BNZ economist Doug Steel said a lower payout forecast was unlikely to surprise farmers, given highly visible declines in world prices to date.
Given current price and currency conditions, a milk price forecast somewhere around the $7 kg ms mark seemed plausible, Mr Steel said.
”This [latest decline] fits within our view that dairy prices would be lower this year,” he said in a statement.
Westpac chief economist Dominick Stephens also believed the new season payout forecast next week would be well down, at around $7.10kg ms, while also picking the present season forecast would be downgraded, from $8.65 to $8.50kg ms.
Because the dairy sector carried the majority, or about 65% of all agricultural debt, and half the dairy debt was held by about 10% of all farmers, the Reserve Bank was watching the sector closely, he said. . .
Wise farmers have used this season’s record payout to reduce debt and have been budgeting on a lower payout for the coming season.
The GolabalDairyPrice Index fell 1.8% in this morning’s auction, the sixth drop in a row.
Fonterra’s GlobalDairyTrade Index dropped 1.1% in this morning’s auction.
This is the sixth fall in a row and takes prices back to where they were this time last year.
That wasn’t seen as a bad price and is still well above the long term average.
The GlobalDairyTrade index dropped 2.6% in this morning’s auction.
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%.
This doesn’t mean the sky is falling.
The price is still above the long term average.
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.
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.
What goes up can also go down and the price index dropped 4% in this morning’s GlobalDairyTrade auction.
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%.
GlobalDairyTrade’s Price Index increased .5% in this morning’s auction.
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%.
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. . .
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. . .
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. . .