Rural Supplies
22 September 2021

Talking GO-STOCK with Hamish Orbell

Hamish Orbell talks to us about GO-STOCK.
17 September 2021

Property Report: The Rural Market Boom

The Country’s Jamie Mackay is joined by PGG Wrightson’s General Manager for Livestock and Rural Real Estate, Peter Newbold, to look at rural property this month with the market being worth more now than it was this time a month ago.

Newbold notes that they currently have more listings than they have ever had, and he puts that down to the quality of properties and the large numbers of enquiries. There continues to be a strong interest in dairy, and Newbold anticipates a large number of transactions in the 15 million+ bracket.

Mackay comments how the dairy industry has been “unfashionable” for the past 4 or so years, and how it has become popular again. Newbold agrees and adds that while it is a wonderful industry, it can be hard to find workers. 

Mackay asks about the sheep and beef market being driven by forestry, and raises concern around the impact from carbon farmers overtaking pastoral land. Newbold adds that maybe it has gone too far but it is a critical part of New Zealand’s economy. 

Horticulture is holding strong, and Newbold anticipates a few listings to come through.

The lifestyle market continues to entice new buyers. Newbold comments on the large numbers of purchasers coming from the metropolitan areas, the limited number of listings, and the trend of auctions being pulled forward due to the demand.

14 September 2021

Inaugural online bull semen sale breaks records and underlines demand for genetics

New Zealand’s first ever fully online bull semen sale attracted intense Trans-Tasman interest and achieved a record price recently.

PGG Wrightson Livestock National Genetics Manager Callum Stewart organised the sale, on 7 September, through New Zealand’s virtual saleyard, bidr®. He says it showed the level of demand for premium quality beef genetics.

“We offered 554 straws of semen, both Hereford and Angus, from several of the country’s foremost beef studs, who put up packages from some of their best bulls. Turnover across the sale was $41,000, with the top price of $420 paid for a straw from Braveheart of Stern, one of the premier bulls of Stern Angus, inland South Canterbury, purchased by an Australian buyer. This is a record for a straw of Angus semen sold in New Zealand.

“As the inaugural sale of its kind, we were looking to the market to gauge demand for bull semen online, receiving an emphatic positive answer. We know commercial farmers and breeders are increasingly motivated to enhance the quality of their stock, using artificial insemination to add value and advance herd genetics. Doing that with the convenience and competition of an online auction is an easy way to access suitable genetic material. This sale demonstrated that online semen sales are a viable option.

“Purchasers are making the decision: they want improved genetics, and are willing to pay, making commercial decisions worth hundreds of thousands of dollars to their businesses. In future this will become an elite sale, with even higher quality on offer,” he said.

Stern Angus stud principal James Fraser was delighted with the auction.

Braveheart has had an outstanding career. He was born in 2007 and bred sons to $95,000 and just this year a son sold at $72,000. His genetics are sought after in Australia and New Zealand. We previously sold full sibling embryos in Australia for AU$2000 each. The Braveheart bloodline is threaded through much of our herd to this day. A small quantity of his semen remains available for the market,” he said.

At the online auction, 78 registered bidders placed 299 bids, with demand for the Angus lots slightly ahead of the Hereford semen.

Find out more about how our Genetics team can help you plan for success.

3 September 2021

Safe sales start up under alert level 3

Listen Now. PGG Wrightson Livestock Report on The Country 03 Aug 2021.

The Country’s Jamie Mackay is joined by PGG Wrightson’s national genetics manager, Callum Stewart, to talk about New Zealand’s livestock market.

Mackay comments how Fielding might be the nation’s capital for farming, especially since they have the biggest sale yards in the country. Stewart confirms that there will be a sale proceeding tomorrow within current government protocols.

Stewart notes that tomorrows livestock sale will adhere to strict social distancing rules, compulsory face masks, and essential people only.

Mackay queries the process for the upcoming semen sale being hosted on Bidr, 7pm on the 7th September. Stewart adds that this technology has allowed them to reach commercial clients for a reasonable cost, and it is something that they have not done in New Zealand before.

Pre Covid19 and Bidr, semen sales took place privately with clients. Stewart adds that technology has allowed them to grow this area of the market and Bidr has become a great success.

30 August 2021

Wool Interview on The Country

WOOL ARTICLE: Backlog in lockdown. Wool processing on pause

This week The Country’s Jamie Mackay is joined by PGG Wrightson’s Rob Cochrane to take a look at the wool market this month with New Zealand in lockdown.

Pre lamb shearing continues on farm and wool can be moved into wool stores under alert level 4 lockdown following strict protocols. Cochrane notes that it is a bit of a concern at this stage as the wool cannot be processed by stores or scourers. 

Auctions can still take place under level 3, in a very limited way. Cochrane says that it depends on the location and ability to social distance, and the potential for buyers to travel from island to island. 
Cochrane notes that the wool market is a traditional industry and buyers prefer to see and handle the wool before purchasing. 

Mackay highlights that there is the potential for a “log jam” if the industry is unable to process and move wool. Cochrane anticipates a backlog at this stage, but he is sure that the industry will get through it.

Cochrane labels shipping as a “major disaster” with importing and exporting restrictions. 
27 August 2021

Property Report: Lockdown won’t stop the Rural Market

Listen now:  Lockdown won’t stop the Rural Market
The Country’s Jamie Mackay is joined by PGG Wrightson’s General Manager for Livestock and Rural Real Estate Peter Newbold to take a look at the rural property market this month with New Zealand being at alert level 4 lockdown.
Mackay queries if this lockdown will encourage Aucklanders to invest in rural property. Newbold thinks there will be some movement to provincial New Zealand, and not only because of lockdown, there is a good sense of community, a better lifestyle, and a more reasonable cost of living.
The livestock season annually slows down this time of year due to lambing and calving, and should see minimal disruption due to the lockdown. Newbold adds that welfare is the only reason to be visiting farms at this stage.
Newbold reminds Mackay that when New Zealand moves to alert level 3 that access to farms is still limited and sale yards can be operated with strict protocols. Thanks to Bidr, sale yards have the capacity to broadcast auctions online, allowing those out of region to purchase livestock. 
Mackay asks if people are still looking for rural investments throughout lockdown. Newbold confirms that people from all walks of life are definitely still looking, and that there will still be activity as spring approaches.
Newbold adds that the dairy industry has quietly generated interest recently and there have been sales taking place.
Mackay asks if the rural market will be anything like the peak in 2014.  Newbold thinks that this is possible and if you look at the position the world is in, people will see a lot of value in rural properties especially in New Zealand.
Livestock Market Update: Saleyards going online
19 August 2021

Livestock Market Update: Saleyards going online

bidr® now livestreaming sales at selected saleyards, with more to follow.

After its launch in 2019 as a purely online trading platform, following the COVID lockdown last year, bidr® introduced its hybrid livestreamed product for on-farm auctions. This provided a fully integrated online bidding platform alongside traditional livestock auctions. That has continued this year with particular success in Genetics as both buyers and sellers benefit from this flexible combined method of sale.

With the introduction of livestreaming at key saleyards, on-site and online livestock trading is now set to become more available for commercial livestock. bidr® now hosts the action from Feilding Saleyards Store Cattle online, allowing users to view the regular sales every Friday, bidding remotely if they choose.

Providing the ability for online bidders to participate in more sales, at more saleyards, bidr’s technology now presents the flexibility to offer the platform at any saleyard throughout the country.

To find out more about bidr®, contact a member of the bidr® team here.

19 August 2021

Livestock Market Update: Go-Stock offers an easy alternative to procuring stock

“Not seeing that big cost go out when the truck brings in the lambs is a good feeling"

Over the past five years PGG Wrightson’s Go-Stock has put 1.5 million lambs and 230,000 cattle on farms throughout New Zealand.

Go-Stock eases cashflow on farm: PGG Wrightson buys the stock and retains ownership, meaning no initial outlay for farmers, who are then free to use capital elsewhere. Farmers then graze and grow the stock before deciding, with our guidance, when and where PGG Wrightson will sell them. PGG Wrightson pays any resulting positive trading margin to the farmer, less fees and selling costs.

Arthur Pearce has 100 hectares at Templeton, just south of Christchurch, which he runs as a mixed cropping farm, including finishing lambs. He has found Go-Stock beneficial with the lambs.

“We use it as an alternative to procuring stock. Go-Stock is an easy way to do it, meaning you don’t have to look at an overdraft month by month. You fill in some simple paperwork and the next thing you know, the lambs arrive.

“Not seeing that big cost go out when the truck brings in the lambs is a good feeling. We use Go-Stock to free up capital so we can do other things. It’s an easy way to stock our property, without the worry of paying for them,” says Arthur.

Go-Stock is an option for sheep, cattle and deer, while a Go-Stock Dairy offer is coming soon.

For more information about Go-Stock speak to your PGG Wrightson livestock representative.

Livestock Market Update: Go-Stock Article Find out more tile

Livestock Market Update: Cam Heggie – Becoming part of each client’s business
19 August 2021

Livestock Market Update: Cam Heggie - Becoming part of each client's business

Taking responsibility for contributing to a large proportion of annual farm income.

Growing up in Palmerston North, Cam Heggie decided he wanted to go into agriculture. A short stint as a farm cadet reinforced that decision, though persuaded him that he wasn’t cut out to be a farmer.

“I went to Palmerston North Boys High and made friends with a lot of boys who were boarders, coming into school from the likes of Taihape and Hunterville. They were bloody good guys, and I thought working with people like them would be an excellent career.”

Moving to Dalgety Crown in 1986 after the cadetship set Cam off on his path in the rural sector, mostly with PGG Wrightson and its predecessor companies, with a couple of overseas stints in the mix.

From managing the Frankton Saleyards for the company, he jumped at the opportunity to become PGG Wrightson Livestock Genetics Representative and Auctioneer for the Northern North Island in 2011, a role he thoroughly enjoys.

“I love it. 

“We are not just a service, not just turning up on sale day and selling livestock. Our role is to become part of each client’s business, guiding them through their breeding programmes, advising on and helping source the bulls and rams they rely on. I gain huge satisfaction from that.

“On top of which, being part of the genetics team, with seven or eight of us throughout the country is a bonus. We are a tight knit bunch and a strong network with an excellent culture, which I am very fortunate to be part of,” he says.

Despite the high levels of satisfaction, the role contains a few challenges, not least of which is continuing land-use change through many of the districts in Cam’s patch.

“Declining breeding cow and ewe numbers are part of the landscape. Dropping numbers doesn’t make selling bulls and rams any easier. Building strong relationships with clients, and wider, becomes more important than ever,” he says.

Such a wide region has its privileges, travelling through a diverse range of country, though brings other challenges.

“When you organise a sale in Northland, where breeding numbers have particularly dropped, you rely on a large number of purchasers driving up from further south, and coming through Auckland, which of course can be hard work, so you need to make it worth their while to sit on the motorway,” he says.

Cam particularly enjoys the most high profile part of his role.

“Being a genetics auctioneer was where I always wanted to end up, and I’ve been right into that side of the job since I started my career. It doesn’t matter if you are doing one of the marquee sales, or someone less well known, if it ends up being a good day, as the auctioneer you have contributed to making a large proportion of that farmer’s annual income. It’s a big responsibility. 

“You have to know what you are selling, which takes plenty of homework. You have to understand your client and their programme, and you have to know what it will take to get the gallery going.

“When you can get all that right, it is hugely satisfying,” he says.

One particular highlight was running the auction when last year’s highest priced two-year-old bull went under the hammer: sold by Cam for Andrew and Tracey Powdrell of Turiroa Angus to joint purchasers at Kaharau and Orere Angus, the bull, named Turiroa Ragnar, fetched $104,000.

Outside work, Cam and wife Sara live on a small block at Glen Massey, Waikato, which they are slowly planting in natives. Sara has a catering business, which sees Cam helping out at weekends, and the couple have four adult children.
Livestock Market Update: Financing bulls with no upfront cost
19 August 2021

Livestock Market Update: Financing bulls with no upfront cost

Defer-A-Bull helps South Otago sharemilker meet bull team cashflow challenge.

Through September and October with hybrid bidr® and on-farm sales, the yearling bull sale season is a prompt for many farmers to apply for a PGG Wrightson Defer-A-Bull purchase agreement. Defer-A-Bull is a proven winner, providing an ideal opportunity to finance a bull team with no upfront cost and no re-payments until the bulls are sold.

Some farmers have subscribed to Defer-A-Bull for ten years and longer. It offers an ideal opportunity to secure capital to fund annual bull purchases. With Defer-A-Bull farmers can invest in a bull team when they need it, without putting pressure on funds when cashflow can be tight.

Kevin Louw is a 50-50 sharemilker with 650 cows, farming in Paratai, South Otago. After a recommendation from PGG Wrightson Livestock Central Otago Dairy Representative Paul Anthony, Kevin has used Defer-A-Bull for several years, and is fully sold on it.

“As a sharemilker, running a team of bulls each year can be challenging. I’ve tried going AB exclusively, and the empty rate was much higher than I wanted, which leads to lost productivity. 

“To use a full complement of bulls, with separate teams alternating night and day, ensuring they have enough rest and can do their job properly without going lame or becoming exhausted, is expensive. As a sharemilker that throws up a cashflow problem that is impossible to budget for. I need 20 bulls to maximise my in-calf cows, which requires a cash outlay of around $50,000, and there is no way I could do that.

“We looked at Defer-A-Bull as an option. With PGG Wrightson behind it, you know they will source stock from reputable buyers, which mitigates the risk of buying inadequate bulls.

“After they’ve finished, the bulls come out for two to three weeks, we freshen them up, then send them off to the works. PGG Wrightson takes their money, and you get an account for the balance. It’s never a major shock, and you end up with a far lower empty rate, which of course helps profitability.

“Defer-A-Bull allows me to follow best practice managing my bull teams. I want to do that properly: for cashflow reasons I wouldn’t be able to do it any other way.” 

For more information on Defer-A-Bull talk to your local PGG Wrightson rep.

Jamie Cunninghame, PGG Wrightson National Dairy Livestock Manager

Livestock Market Update: Defer-a-Bull campaign artwork
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