HAY shortages across the border inSouth Australiacould benefit local producers according to an industry body, but local growers dispute the claims as being an overly simplistic interpretation of the market.
The Australian Fodder Industry Association (AFIA) reports prices for South Australian hay have been steadily rising and supplies dwindling, thanks to a very dry summer.
Reports emerged last week that some suppliers had run out of stock, selling off their entire 2012 crop.
South Australiahas experienced drier conditions thanVictoriathis summer with future rain forecasts looking grim. The passage of the north’s monsoon season holds little prospect for weather conditions to improve.
AFIA executive officer, Darren King said the rising cross-border prices could benefitHamiltonand Western District hay producers.
“In general hay (South Australian) supplies are quite low and demand is spiking,” Mr King said.
“The good thing in your neck of the woods is there was a fantastic hay-making season last year … potentially, you could be selling over the border.”
Barry Hay of Barry’s Hay 4 Hay said the AFIA’s claims were overly simplistic and did not take into account a number of factors including tough conditions for local farmers.
“It goes back to the last year, 2012 was a really tough winter. It used up all we could supply,” Mr Hay said.
“(And) in 2013 we’re looking at a tough year financially for farms again.”
Full story in today’s Spectator.