The Weekly Dairy Report: Mating started in the north with some cows behind in condition, as milk price trends are volatile amid uncertain production levels

The Weekly Dairy Report: Mating started in the north with some cows behind in condition, as milk price trends are volatile amid uncertain production levels

After a dry week the rains returned and heavy soils were soon topped up again, although some irrigators in Canterbury were started on the lighter land.

Southland has had the driest of the weather nationally, while dairy areas in the North Island are finding the wet conditions have brought pastures into the reproductive phase earlier than normal.

Toppers will soon be seen in these areas as managers strive to keep quality in their pastures and keep milk flowing at high rates with cheap spring feed.

The Met Service forecast of a warm dry October will be welcome, after 3 months of above average rainfall and below average sunshine.

All the focus is now on checking the pre mating status of cows, to allow time for intervention for slow cycling animals.

Some managers are reporting some loss of BCS in cows and with the balance date not yet arrived in the South Island, significant supplements, including palm kernel, are still being fed.

Demand is strong for all types of supplements as farmers look to add more energy to the feed that is short and muddy in the wet areas, and some are experiencing delays in supply.

Bulls will be being prepared at a BCS of 4.5-5, vet checked, and BVD tested, to ensure no loss in momentum once the AI period has finished.

Dairy prices fell at auction by 2.4% last week, in a volatile market where the derivative trades predicted a lift.

Extra volumes offered were the highest for the year, and this seemed to dampen demand, as whole milk powder prices moved down closer to the $3000/tonne mark, needed to keep the forecast steady.

A softer exchange rate, some suggesting driven by the present political uncertainty was however helpful, and butter and cheese prices were at yearly highs for Oceania listings.

Rabobank has predicted that the milk price peak is here and production increases imminent, but they are confident extra demand out of China will nulify any immediate price fall.

The mycoplasma bovis outbreak has been found in another South Canterbury/North Otago farm of the Van Leeuwen group, and soon officials will have to make some tough decisions on how hard to cull.

A dairy apprentership scheme has been launched by Federated Farmers and PrimaryITO,  as the sector looks to upskill applicants to the needs of the industry.



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MPI to slaughter 4000 cattle to stop spread of disease Mycoplasma

Accidentally misread that as MMP to slaughter 4000 cattle, at first. Impressive political achievement. Must be confuzzled with the constant election coverage.

I expect if I pop on over to there'll be some codgers seeking to blame this unlucky happening on MMP too, though, such is their antipathy to it.

Don't bother feeling sorry for the cows, it was their inevitable fate.
What I don't is I understand we payout the farmers for their greedy farming practices, can't they get some some insurance?
Same goes for any farmers, including the fish farmers, another exercise in greed.


Get over yourself. Kaikoura and Christchurch businesses had government help. If you want a stable business environment which employs and makes money for central govt then rare episodes like this need to be funded. Considering most of the stock will go into the food chain, the govt wont be out of pocket too much.

Inevitable fate yes, but I imagine there will be genetic gains lost in all of this. Raises a few questions now:

What do you do with 4000 animals? Bury them (google cached article)

Burying, not burning, infected animal carcasses is the preferred option for disposing of large numbers of livestock in the event of a serious disease outbreak, says Dr Evelyn Pleydell of the Ministry for Primary Industries.

How do you plug the gap for next season (assuming they get all infected animals this time around), divert some heifers due for export to China and in the meantime make silage, finish lambs,

Where did I not make it clear they are heading to the works to end up as burgers. Humans cant get Mycoplasma bovis. Mmmm yum.

Get a grip,
Send the bill to the farmers, they will soon get some insurance, this isn't an act of god, its a breach of biosecurity, take someone to court and and let insurance companies argue, same for all farmers.

We need people to feel secure enough to report things like this quickly. Supposedly the quicker authorities know the better chance to get rid of the problem. If you know you are going to get nothing for these animals. Take them out the back of the farm and shoot them. You cant get insurance for this stuff, despite the saying you can insure for anything.

They will have issues replacing the cows, think of the lost income.

From what I have read Aj they will get compensation for that. However its doubtful it will cover all their losses. Its extraordinarily important these diseases arent hidden by farmers. The raging lunatics will claim farmers are being treated with favoritism. The success of the Tb eradication has hung on our levies being our insurance. Though success would be debatable by some.

The dairy futures were battered this week, and the milk powder market took the brunt of the blows. CME spot
nonfat dry milk (NDM) plunged 5.25ȼ to 77.25ȼ/lb., the lowest price since late-May 2016. The decline was fueled
by concerns that the European Commission is considering changes to its skim milk powder (SMP) Intervention
purchase program, which has served as a floor supporting the global milk powder market for the past three years.
Under current policy, the European Commission would purchase up to 109,000 metric tons of SMP at a fixed
price of €1,690 per metric ton during the upcoming Intervention season, from March 1 to September 30, 2018.
With these terms, the European Commission has ammassed a mountain of milk powder totaling roughly 365,000
metric tons (805 million pounds).
But the commission is reportedly considering a
proposal to switch to a tender, with no guaranteed
volume or fixed price. Instead, the commission
would set purchase prices for SMP at levels it
deems appropriate based on market conditions.
This uncertainty was unwelcome in a market
already weighed down by heavy inventories.
USDA’s Dairy Market News echoed this
sentiment, reporting, “Downward pressure, caused
by global surpluses of SMP and the diminishing
prices of protein alternatives, have the once
resilient NDM market beginning to bow to fate.”
Whether or not the proposed changes in Europe
come to pass, the NDM market will have to
Page 2 of 4
contend with formidable supplies of protein. The
trade speculates that the European Commission
will release some of the aging product in its SMP
Intervention program into feed markets, where it
will compete directly with whey products. And
there is no shortage of whey. Last week’s Dairy
Products report showed U.S. output of dry whey
for human consumption at 94.7 million pounds in
August, up 27% from a year ago. Production is up
9.6% for the year to date, and inventories have
surged. On August 31, stocks of dry whey for
human consumption reached 97.1 million pounds,
up 68.6% from a year ago.

Milk supply is expected to grow on the global market in the coming months, with a strong
increase in EU output coinciding with a steady rise in US supply and a strong start to the
season in New Zealand.

n the absence of this market backstop, European dairy markets have pushed SMP prices down by a further 5% since the start of October.

In recent days, SMP has traded around the €1,550/t mark, which is almost €150/t below the intervention price and the lowest since the market crash in 2009.

With increased milk supply expected from some large producing regions this year, a bearish attitude has taken hold in many corners of the dairy market.

This weaker outlook has taken some heat out of markets, with European quotes for butter and whole milk powder (WMP) also in retreat. The Dutch price of WMP has fallen €100/t in the last week below €2,900/t, while butter prices have declined €450/t in the last 10 days below €6,500/t.

With the intervention window now closed for 2017, the European Commission confirmed an additional 31,000t of SMP had been sold into intervention this year, with 11,000t of this sold in the last week of September. No Irish SMP entered intervention last year.

This means EU processors have sold a cumulative 405,500t of SMP into intervention since 2015. While it has created a market floor, this overhang of product has also served to drag any meaningful recovery in milk powder prices.

The EU said it expects to sell 150,000t of SMP out of intervention next year as demand picks up.