Alistair Murphey, Agfarm Regional Manager CNSW


Markets have finished slightly weaker this week, as international futures took a breather over the last few days. With values coming off the boil, we’ve seen sellers distance themselves from the market ever further and as result trade has been quite thin and sporadic to say the least.

We haven’t received too much to write home about in the rainfall department this week here in Central West NSW, though there is some weather on the way for the weekend, which whilst isn’t problem solving by any means will still be welcome with open arms.

Growers are starting to express concern over the lack of moisture profile available heading towards the 2018 sowing window, and with minimal significant rainfall predicted in the medium term, any unsold grain has a hefty price target attached.

We are starting to see farm to farm spot barley sales being made at $300/MT farm gate price, which is roughly about $20/MT above what the domestic consumer market is currently prepared to pay. But these trades are only for single loads here and there, any significant volume would trade at a discount theoretically as the farm trade demand isn’t a big volume market.

Weather will have massive influence on what grain values do over the next two months, as it will have a significant influence over the upcoming winter crops potential given the depleted state of the current moisture profile in Northern NSW. If we see the dry pattern continue into the start the sowing window, old crop values will no doubt do some work to the upside in order to entice further liquidity from an unenthusiastic seller.

On the flipside, if we do receive widespread rainfall across the major cropping zones, values could potentially continue to come under pressure as more confidence around new crop conditions will see sellers re-engage the market.

In summary, the old crop market participants have eyes firmly focused on weather over the next two months. And any developments on this front will have a significant bearing on where we see domestic markets head to from here.

Prices as at 23rd March 2018

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