STRONG export demand and confidence in Australian beef operations internationally are just two of the reasons to remain upbeat about the industry, according to ANZ state agribusiness manager Steve Radeski.
Mr Radeski said while 2018 presented challenges for the beef industry, the longer term fundamentals remain positive.
“Strong export demand has continued to define market opportunities with both traditional and emerging markets showing confidence in the Australian brand and ability to deliver consistent quality,” he said.
“With China, for example, in the 11 months to November, Australian exports were up 50 per cent year-on-year or some 49,000 tonnes.
“Domestic supply, however, has been under pressure with seasonal conditions across pastoral areas and more broadly in eastern states squeezing any potential for herd growth and, more importantly, seeing higher than normal female kill numbers.”
But Mr Radeski said there was clearly an intent by producers to invest and restock when conditions improved.
“The response to limited rain events in the east in October saw restockers enter the market and the Eastern Young Cattle Indicator spike, albeit the lack of follow up rain saw the index come off over November,” Mr Radeski said.
“Confidence in the sector is also underpinning land values across the beef industry with significant investment from existing producers as well as new entrants and at all levels from local families to corporate and institutional investors.
“What is evident is that any future growth of the Australian herd, its ability to continue to deliver productivity gains and to also meet market expectations of quality and consistency, will be reliant on our studs being able to deliver the numbers and genetics required.”
Mr Radeski said ANZ’s continued involvement in Beef Week was an important component of its support for the broader beef industry.
“The history of the Australian beef industry is one of continual improvement and innovation,” he said.
“Both of these attributes will be required as we look to meet the challenges of not only the current seasonal conditions but also growing global competition.”