Stock culled as drought drives grain, hay prices to ‘scary’ highs amid record demand

24 October 2018

Kath Sullivan, ABC Rural
24 October 2018

Farmers are culling animals and failing to cover the cost of production as grain prices skyrocket due to drought.

South Australian dairy farmer Rick Gladigau said the price of grain to feed his cows had doubled over the past year.

“I’ve seen plenty of dry periods and tough times, but none to where they are this year with hay and grain prices. I’ve never seen them at this point. It is scary,” Mr Gladigau said.

The Mount Torrens farmer recently sent 12 cows to the abattoir because he could not afford to feed them.

“I’ll probably end up culling 20 to 25 per cent of the herd in the end and just cut back to a smaller herd that I can manage and hopefully carry through alright,” Mr Gladigau said.

“There’s just not the money in it to be able to feed cows, so you’ve got to decide what you’re going to keep and what you’re going to get rid of. At these prices, the return out of it is non-existent.”

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