FARMERS SHOULD DEMAND FACTORY CONTRACTS PRIOR TO PURCHASING DAIRY CALVES

12 MARCH 2019

ICSA beef chair Edmund Graham has said that any farmer considering buying dairy calves should demand a factory contract, to include an agreed price, in advance of purchasing. Mr Graham said, “Farmers even remotely thinking about taking on these calves need a guarantee that there will be an outlet for them in two years’ time that will cover the cost of production, plus a margin.”

Continuing Mr Graham said, “The economics of dairy bull beef simply don’t stack up. Even if you get the calves for free, they are still too expensive at today’s prices and that’s the reality. We have no clarity on the outlook for dairy bull beef so why take the risk and expend two years for nothing? This enterprise is a complete waste of time; it’s bad enough losing money but to have the stress of not knowing when or if you can get your bulls killed is completely unacceptable. Even with steer or heifer systems it is it is absolutely necessary to know what price you can expect in two years’ time. Farmers cannot be expected to undertake long term investment without long term contracts. This year has to be the last year of winter finishers getting burned.”

ENDS