Seasonal Update

Most of southern Australia and Western Australia are forecast to receive rain over the next week. Rain remains critical at this stage of the process – providing help or hindrance depending on where crops are located.
Goulburn and Murray Valley region, no significant rain to report this week. 15-20mm of rain is forecast for the area over the next seven days. Crops in the area are doing well with the warmer weather.

The recent heavier falls in the south may upset the cutting and curing of early silage in southwest Victoria but the lighter falls in the Mallee should not greatly affect the quality of vetch hay.
South West Western Australia, 20mm of rain fell seven days ago in the Lakes area. More light rain is forecast over the weekend. The weather turned hot and dry in the Lakes region which enabled growers to start cutting.
South East South Australia: Light rain passed over late in the week with more forecast for the next seven days. Rain now would be ideal to finish the season off.

Figure 1:  Last Weeks Rainfall

Weekly rainfall totals for Australia 13.09.2020 – 19.09.2020

Figure 2: BoM 8-Day Rainfall Forecast

Total Forecast Rainfall 21.09.2020

Figure 3: BOM-Australian Landscape Water Balance

Australian Landscape Water Balance, 19.09.2020


Figure 4: Precipitation Outlook

WX Maps Precipitation Outlook 21.09.2020

Trading and Marketing

Cereal Hay Values Into the Goulburn Valley 21.09.2020


Goulburn and Murray Valley region: Wet conditions in July and August are being offset with some use of fungicides to guarantee crops. Advanced crops are being made into silage. There are still three to four weeks until crops will be cut for hay.

With the uncertainty around how the season will finish there has been new inquiry in Victoria from farmers wanting to secure last season’s good quality vetch and cereal hay that has been stored under cover. Prices are not expected to change much, with the market remaining reserved for the time being.
Oaten hay growers who have forward contracts in place with their hay exporters are feeling relieved to have a buyer secured.

For most oaten hay growers, the early break this year made it possible to get on top of weed control in their paddocks, but others may find their hay exporter strictly applying their grading system and discounting loads for weed content. While ryegrass makes an ideal feed for cows in Victoria or in Japan, it will be considered an impurity and a bargaining tool by north Asian buyers.

All prices remain steady this week.

Change per t
Cereal hay +/- $0 $190-220 Steady
Lucerne hay +/- $0 $450-500 Steady
Straw +$10 $70-100 Steady
Pasture hay  +/- $0 $250-330 Steady

Western Australia

Yields will be done for the eastern part of the southwest and at this stage will struggle to make the top-quality grade for export. Growers will look to make as much hay as possible while conditions are fine. Potential large rain forecast for October. Margaret River area will be able to make silage now depending on conditions.

No changes to pricing to report this week.

Change per t
Cereal hay +/- $0 $330-370 Steady
Lucerne hay +/- $0 $450-490 Steady
Straw +/- $0 $120-140 Steady
Pasture hay  +/- $0 $200-220 Steady

South Australia

Crops continue to do well. Demand remains largely unchanged from previous reports in southeast South Australia. Inquiry has started to grow for new season hay with buyers wanting to take advantage of forecast prices.

Growers who traditionally produce 50% hay and 50% grain in Southern Australia are now considering pushing as much through to grain as possible. This is due to reports of a wetter than average spring.

No change to pricing this week.

Change per t
Cereal hay +/- $0 $220-250 Steady
Lucerne hay +/- $0 $330-350 Steady
Straw +/- $0 $100-120 Steady
Pasture hay +/- $0 $180-200 Steady

Pictures of 19/20 Season Crops

Hay: Oaten Hay JC-2 (Oaten Hay P1)

Specifications: Feels crunchy soft, very minimal weather spots, sweet and fresh aroma, >1% Rye Grass, JC-1 colour (85% Green) and JC-1 Super stem size (<5mm), Water Soluble Carbohydrates 21.3%. Inspected 20/2/2020.

Location: Echuca West, Victoria 3564

Pictures of 20/21 Season Crops

Hay: Oaten Hay: Brusher Variety

Specifications: Estimated yield of 9mt/ha, soil moisture is good, seeding date 1/5/2020, expected cutting date 28/09/2020, estimated baling date 19/10/2020, inspected 10/9/2020

Location: Murra Warra, Victoria 3401

Oaten Hay, Brusher Variety 21.09.2020

Sources: Bureau of Meteorology, Dairy Australia, WX Maps, Lachstock Research, Weekly Times, Grain Central, Mecardo Expert Market Analysis, AFIA (Australian Fodder Industry Association) & Feed Central.

By Katie Lindkvist, Wingara AG.