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Regional Round-up is a monthly newsletter providing an overview into the environmental and business conditions affecting farmers and rural businesses in the Goulburn Valley and North East Victoria.

Dairy

Water prices have increased and this is paired with reduced allocation.
Feed costs have continued to increase and feed is now extremely difficult to source in the wake of so much being sent to NSW and QLD.
The Alpine Valleys saw some rainfall which stimulated pasture growth and enabled topdressing. Minimal rainfall in the Goulburn Valley has heightened dairy farmer anxiety.
On a positive note, milk production appears to be reasonable given seasonal conditions.
Saputo has paid out the final 40c as part of the final asset sale.

Cropping

Significant rainfall is required to take crops through to harvest and with a shortfall, crops will not make grain and will be cut for hay. Much of this hay would be below export quality and will be sold on the domestic market.
The current poor prognosis for crops is amplified by a series of frosts in late August which may further reduce overall yield. A number of canola crops are already being cut for hay.
Compounding these challenges is the higher than normal kangaroo and deer populations foraging and accessing water.

Sheep

A strong sheep economy has seen some farmers change from beef to sheep to capitalise on this growth.
Overall, sheep are doing well with high wool and fat lamb prices.
A number of farm dams are nearly empty with August being the seventh consecutive month of below average rainfall across most of Eastern Australia.

Beef

The cattle market is varied. Drought cattle are coming into the region and prices are reflecting their poor conditions. There are very few long term fatteners operating in the market as most have little pasture to offer and fodder prices have climbed as hay continues to leave Victoria for NSW and QLD.
Good trade quality cattle are back about $200 on earlier this year but are still being sought by feedlots.
Export quality cattle are still in demand as the A$ continues to fall.

Horticulture

Poor prices continue across horticultural crops, however the industry is still investing in technology to secure its future.
After a small loss this financial year, Coca cola-Amatil has announced another strategic review of SPC in Shepparton.

Irrigation

Storage levels:
                          THIS YEAR        LAST YEAR
                             (% full)               (% full)
DARTMOUTH            89                     82
HUME                        52                     90
EILDON                     65                     70

Call 1300 834 775 to find out what assistance we may be able to provide you, or make an appointment with one of our experienced Rural Financial Counsellors.

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Contact Us

Rural Financial Counselling Service Victoria - North East.

Unit 1, Enterprise House

3 Stanley Street

Wodonga VIC 3689

PHONE: 1300 834 775

EMAIL: info@rfcsvicne.org.au

FAX: (02) 6100 6123