Full Strength - Victorian dairy sector leads the nation

A new report has revealed that in 2020-21 Victoria’s nation-leading dairy farmers experienced the best financial returns in more than six years as the sector continues to innovate and excel.

Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas released the 2020-21 Dairy Farm Monitor report today, which shows the hard work and resilience of Victoria’s dairy farmers has paid off after experiencing some difficult years responding to recent dry conditions, low water allocations and market volatility.

Agriculture Victoria’s Dairy Farm Monitor project is a collaboration with Dairy Australia to provide critical insight for industry into how the sector is tracking. The annual report is a comprehensive financial and production analysis of 80 Victorian dairy farm businesses in south-western Victoria, Gippsland and northern Victoria.

The quality benchmarking data in the report gives Victorian dairy farmers the ability to make comparisons and identify areas they could change to improve the productivity, profitability and sustainability of their businesses.

While average dairy farm profits were up across most of the state, dairy farmers in Victoria’s north posted the best results, taking advantage of favourable seasonal conditions to record the highest profits this region has seen for 15 years.

Since the last report, farm cashflows have increased from the previous year, with 94 per cent of farms recording a positive return. This financial rebound has enabled farmers to invest back into their businesses by repairing and upgrading infrastructure and machinery and improving pastures.

Victoria is a leading contributor to Australia’s dairy industry, accounting for 77 per cent of Australia's dairy exports valued at $2.1 billion. The gross value of milk produced in Victoria is worth $2.7 billion (2018-19). The sector supports almost 10,000 jobs with more than half of these workers located in regional Victoria.

The 2020-21 Dairy Farm Monitor report is available on the Dairy Farm Monitor Project webpage.

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