Tasmania's dairy farms rebounding strongly

16 December 2014

Tasmania is at the forefront of the national dairy industry with businesses recording strong profits in 2013-14 - an excellent sign for the future of the industry.

Senator Richard Colbeck, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, welcomed the ABARES report Australian dairy: financial performance of Australian dairy farms, 2011-12 to 2013-14 which reveals good news forTasmanian dairy farmers.

"After recording an average loss of $73,450 in 2012-13, Tasmanian dairy farm businesses rebounded strongly to record an estimated average profit of $123,696 in 2013-14," Senator Colbeck said.

"This higher farm income is an excellent result for our hard working dairy farmers and represents outstanding performance."

"Total cash receipts increased from an average of $804,604 per farm to more than $1 million in 2013-14."

Senator Colbeck said milk production had remained relatively stable and strong profits were the result of favourable conditions and an increase in milk prices.

The report also found Tasmania's share of Australian milk production increased from five per cent in 1999-2000 to eight per cent in 2013-14, mainly due to increases in farm sizes and productivity on Tasmanian dairy farms - which has grown at an average rate of 1.8 per cent a year since 1988.

"Tasmanian farmers can compete with the world's best and this government is working to make sure they have every opportunity to do that," Senator Colbeck said.

"This year we have secured free trade agreements with China, Japan and South Korea. With growing access to international markets, the prospects for Tasmanian dairy are now stronger than they have been for many years."

Australian dairy: financial performance of Australian dairy farms, 2011-12 to 2013-14 is available on the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) website: agriculture.gov.au/abares/publications

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