By Colin Grant
Australian growers are now planting the last of their crops and hoping that good Spring rains can ensure a successful crop but there is a long way to go. Weather predictions for many parts of the country over the next 3-6 months are not overly favourable but no need for panic yet.
The Alfalfa market continues to struggle along due to global stocks, low prices and the uncertainty around the Saudi Arabian market. The US harvest has now started. While yields from the USA are around average it’s expected that overall tonnage will be back on previous years as hay prices have improved so many uncertified fields have switched from seed production.
Locally, red meat production in Australia is starting to attract record prices for Lamb and Wool and this has in turn generated strong demand for Sub-Clover and Perennial Grasses to the point where we have low carry stocks for most of these products.
Demand from Europe for annual clovers this year was lower than normal but driven in part by a short Spring selling season and good local inventory levels. We do expect to see enquiry strengthen in the 2nd half of the year.
The White Clover market is an interesting one and has a lot of uncertainty. Inventory levels globally are generally low, but demand is also soft. We have been hearing varied reports from Europe and the USA about harvest and expected tonnages so it’s a wait and see scenario. Current stocks of Haifa in Australia are low.
Woolly Pod Vetch (Vicia villosa) sales have been moderate too good for Europe (Capello blue tag now sold out for the EU) and South Africa but a little sluggish for North America, but again we expect this market to pick up again later in the year.
We will again be attending the ESA conference in October and so we will be in contact with some of you shortly to arrange a meeting time.
As always look forward to hearing from you should you have any enquiries.