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NZ Dairy Farming Update March 2017

Friday, 31 March 2017 at 1:29pm


photo of cow from Waibury Dairy farming update march 2017

At the beginning of the month central and coastal South Island were experiencing dry conditions with little rainfall and high temperatures. However, this was soon turned around as steady autumn rain started to fall in these areas, this rain will revive pastures and winter feed crops. The improved soil moisture levels will also be a boost for milk flow, and production forecasts look to be ahead of earlier estimates.

Fonterra announced its interim results which revealed increased revenue and profit, and  reconfirmed a forecast cash payout of $6.40/share including dividend.

There has been variation in milk flows nationally, with some regions on once a day, and others enjoying record production, but analysts estimate volumes will be up on earlier forecasts.

Dairy product prices increased at the Global Dairy Trade (GDT) auction twice this month amid optimism about the outlook.  The GDT price index advanced 1.6% to US$3,005. Some 22,642 tonnes of product was sold, up from 22,498 at the previous auction.  Whole milk powder (WMP) rose 2.4 per cent to US$2,924 a tonne.  Compared with the same time a year ago, overall prices as measured by the index are 54% higher and WMP prices are up 45.3%.

On another positive note, the latest Ministry for Primary Industries ‘Situation and Outlook for Primary Industries’ (SOPI) data shows dairy exports are forecast to rise 8.7 per cent to $14.5 billion in the 12 months ending June 30.