No one is game to predict the outcome of tomorrow’s first Global Dairy Auction of the new season, although the usual indicator, the Futures Market is showing a downward trend for whole milk powder. The latest futures price for WMP, the product that sets the farmgate milk price, is $US2,080 compared with the last auction in mid June of $US2,118. Rakaia Dairy Farmer Jessie Chang Dorman says she follows the auction but it pays not to get too emotional about one GDT as it’s a longterm business. Analyst Keith Woodford says with exchange rate having moved in recent weeks the overnight auction will need to go up 10% to support the current Fonterra payout of $4.25. Analysts say the bottom line is there is still a lot of milk being produced which is weighing on prices and the Brexit issue adds further doubts. We’ll have those results for you in our next Daily Report.
Warmer weather is proving to be a mixed blessing down on the farm. While it makes life more pleasant it creates poorer quality feed, the spread of destructive bugs and in horticulture fruit fails to achieve high sugar levels. Agresearch scientist Dr Warren King says that while pasture may look good it is just cosmetic. He the warmer weather provides extra pasture growth but because with less sunlight hours the pasture quality is diminished and it’s typically short on carbohydrates. Dr King has also noticed a southward spread of the damaging black beetle with it now reaching as far south as Foxton where previously it wasn’t seen south of Taupo. He says we need the cold weather to drive the population down. Hawkes Bay farmer Bruce Wills says the Giant Willow Aphid is also thriving on the warmer weather. It creates a honey dew which drops from the trees onto sheep sheltering below and spoils wool. The honeydew also attracts wasps which are now more widespread. And Professor Jacqueline Rowarth says wines such as sauvignon blanc need cold weather to bring out the sharp flavours. She says fruit always needs cold snaps to elevate the sugar or brix levels.
New Zealand has taken another step towards becoming TB-free with large areas of previously infected land being declared free of the disease. OSPRI administers the TBfree programme aimed at eradicating bovine tuberculosis from cattle, deer and wildlife and it’s been winning the battle with intensive possum control and then carrying out wildlife surveys to confirm the disease has been eradicated. OSPRI chief executive Michelle Edge says a total area of nearly 1.6 million hectares has been declared free of the disease in the past five years. She says it’s a fantastic milestone for the TB free programme and reflects the ongoing investment by shareholders, farmers and contractors. The plan aims to eradicate the disease from cattle and deer herds by 2026, from possums by 2040 and biological eradication of TB from New Zealand by 2055.
Top CRV Ambreed jersey bull Okura Lika Murmur has retired and leaves his sons to pave the way in the dairy industry. CRV Ambreed’s breeding programme manager Aaron Parker says ‘Murmur’ has made an outstanding contribution to the progression of the national dairy herd. He’s a CRV Ambreed’s hall of famer and has produced nearly half a million doses of semen and 22,464 daughters have been herd tested in New Zealand. Murmur has also had an impact internationally with his genetics particularly popular in South Africa, North America and Australia. According to Aaron Parker hundreds of his cows have been contract mated in New Zealand and he’s produced some of country’s best jersey bulls. He came from the Okura Stud, North of Whangarei and it’s predicted the name Murmur will be heard in the dairy industry for many years to come.
Federated Farmers takes its responsibilities as New Zealanders seriously with farmers bearing the burden of the Emissions Trading Scheme, alongside households and other businesses, through the carbon costs applied to the transport fuel and electricity that New Zealanders use.
It is difficult to pick the impact following the decision by the UK to exit the EU. The impact depends on whether trade agreements can be negotiated and what other countries attempt to negotiate for themselves. Australia is likely to attempt to increase its quota allocation into the market, which could potentially restrict the demand for NZ product. Under World Trade Organisation rules, NZ’s level of access to both the EU and UK have to remain the same, however NZ will be unable to alter volumes between the two markets, depending on the level of demand. NZ will also be impacted if the UK’s sheepmeat access to the EU is reduced. This could result in an oversupplied UK market, thus restricting demand for NZ product. However, on the other hand it could potentially stimulate increased demand from the EU replacing the UK lamb. With so much up in the air, the sheepmeat trade to these regions is fraught with uncertainty, which you can expect to see reflected in farmgate prices to some degree.
Limited supply but good demand meant most classes of cattle were firm to lifting this week, although heifers did ease. Good prime steers were fetching $2.80-$2.90/kg with the traditional 575kg plus indicator firm to average $2.87/kg. Most of the prime bulls were Herefords with the heaviest weighing 910-1080kg and they sold for $2.43-$2.44/kg while those closer to the preferred weight range earned $2.55- $2.62/kg. A couple of Angus bulls at 930kg made $2.49/kg. Heavy prime heifers sold well with most $2.75-$2.80/kg . Prime cows sold on a firm to lifting market on light numbers with Friesians weighing 514-710kg trading for $1.70-$1.80/kg and those 400-450kg made $1.55-$1.63/kg. In the sheep pens a slightly bigger offering of store lambs met strong demand and sold on a similar market to last week. Most lambs weighed in at 30-34kg to make $91-$95.50, with males averaging $2.97/kg and mixed sex $2.91/kg. The 30kg indicator graph remained steady at $3/kg though the overall indicator finished at $2.89/kg. Prime lambs sold for $122-$132 for the heavy ones though a large number also sold for between $100-$110. A good number of heavy ewes sold in excess of $100 while mediums made $80-$90.