The November 2018 edition of Farmanco Facts should be winging its way to you. It could be hiding in your Inbox, Post Box, RMB or you can find it on the Farmanco App. Remember, if you don’t yet subscribe to Farmanco Facts, visit our shop today.
Blake O’Meagher, Agronomist and Precision Ag specialist (now based at Beverley) wrote this month’s Editorial. And November articles include:
Farmanco Planning Conference 2018, by Keith Symondson, CEO
Interest Rates, by Greg Easton, Farm Management Consultant
Fixed interest rates and the spread between years are at historically low levels
Check on break cost if you need to prepay a fixed loan early
Some finance quotes have seen a discount to fix at three years, resulting in fixed rates lower than variable rates
Make a good risk management decision. Be comfortable with your decision whether rates go up or down
Fix only core debt that you do not expect to be able to repay in the short-term
Decision-making with high or low confidence – check in with the voice of reason, by David Ward
Don’t get caught up in the euphoria of current high prices when making long term decisions
You can be a calculated risk taker or risk averse, but always remain realistically conservative
Similarly, don’t be distracted by a poor season, agricultural businesses are resilient
Have clear management strategies and align these to your business’ situation
Use long-term average yields and prices for financial analysis and test these for sensitivity
Focus on keeping your production costs below 55%
Financing ratios should not exceed preferred levels, with a minimum preferred maximum of 1.2:1
Machinery investment ratios should not be greater than $1 machinery value to $1 income
Aim for a five-year average internal rate of return above 5% and preferably above 10%
Keep ‘off-farm’ investments relative to the business’ growth and succession planning activities
Regardless of rainfall zone, only look to expand across the ‘better’ soil types
Ensure you maintain good rotations and a strong emphasis on soil health
Use professional advisors as the voice of reason and to enable informed decision-making
Petal testing in Canola for Sclerotinia and factors that affect Sclerotinia germination, by Mark Lawrence
Petal testing can be another tool for predicting Sclerotinia in canola
Petal infection percentage may be different from south to north of the grain growing region of WA, due to optimum temperature required to germinate Apothecia
It is possible to plate your own petals (but it can be time consuming)
Hopefully technology will improve to help test infection levels more easily and quickly
Petal infection can change weekly as shown in Great Southern WA Survey
Barley cash contract options and managing grade spreads, by Jane Packard
There are several different cash contract options to sell barley
There are variations between buyers on the malt varieties of barley accepted, and the grade spreads that apply to them
Not all buyers of malt barley accept all varieties across all port zones
Allocate barley to contracts based on best spreads NOT the best price
Each monthly edition of Farmanco Facts provides both the WA Wool and Livestock report and NSW / VIC Wool and Livestock Report, prepared by Richard Brake.
National Agriculture Day on the 21st November is [apparently] when Australia pauses to celebrate the amazing contribution of Agriculture to this country.
According to the National Agriculture Day website, Agriculture supports 1.6 million jobs from the city to the bush – including retail, logistics, technology and science.
Last year Australian farms surpassed $60 billion in farm gate income. And, the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) hopes to grow this figure to $100 billion by 2030.
Food, Fibre & Forestry Facts tells the story that is Australian agriculture and has been released by the NFF just in time for National Agriculture Day 2017.
The reference guide drills down to specific figures on Australia’s leading agricultural commodities, including: beef, sheep, wool, grains, cotton, dairy, pork, rice, dried fruit, sugar and forestry, and useful for the school student, journalist or those with inquisitive minds.
National Agriculture & Related Industries Day was originally the idea of Gina Hancock and since inception has grown to a broader collaboration between industry groups, corporate Australia and government. The day is supported by a wide range of partners and supporters, including Coles, Hancock Prospecting Pty Ltd, National Farmers’ Federation and the Australian government. See here for more information about partners.
National Agriculture Day EVENTS
There are several events happening on Tuesday, 21st November, which you can see here including the following in –
Farmanco is a farm consultancy business, servicing farming clients all over Western Australia, in New South Wales and Victoria. It is unavoidable and inevitable that we all spend many hours and kilometres on the road – and around machinery.
We are all of us aware of the idea of using ICE on our mobile phones. This idea was conceived of by Bob Brotchie, a former paramedic in 2004. His idea was to allow first responders assistance when identifying a victim/patient, treating them and notifying their next of kin.
Families are happy knowing that – in the case of an emergency – police and hospitals know who to immediately contact.
I remember asking my children to list their ‘In Case of Emergency (ICE)’ contact, as they each got their own mobiles. And ICE is definitely listed as a contact on my husband’s phone.
However, over the last several years it has become common for people to lock their phones with a password. And I have worried that nobody would be able to access these details, when required.
Recently, this worry came to a head (in a lighthearted manner) when my husband had a hockey game in Wagga and I went along for the ride.
I wasn’t planning on supporting him at his game (like a good wife). No, I was off to shop and have coffee, but when teeing up how to find each other later, I said something like “That’s if you show up. What if you get knocked unconscious?”. He answered, ‘Someone will come and get you.” “But, you’ll be unconscious husband. Will they even know your wife is in town?”
So, this lead to a quick chat about people not able to access his In Case of Emergency (ICE) contact details, because his phone was locked. I googled this problem (as you do) and came up with solutions.
On the iPhone, there is a process to follow to engage the already installed Health application. You need to create a Medical ID, as follows:
Open Health and tap Medical ID > Edit.
Enter your emergency contacts and health information like your birth date, height, and blood type.
Turn on Show When Locked to make your Medical ID available from the Lock screen. In an emergency, this gives people who want to help some important information, like the emergency contacts that you’ve entered.
When you’re finished, tap Done.
Once you’ve set up the Medical ID, then you can view medical information on the iPhone and call your emergency contact. IF the iPhone is locked – you need to:
Press the Home button.
On the Emergency call screen, you can make a call or tap Medical ID to see emergency medical information stored on the device.
(Please note, that I retrieved this information from the online Apple Support page.)
Several In Case of Emergency (ICE) apps are available for Androids, through Play Store. I won’t recommend any, although I have downloaded one to my own phone.
They offer the same benefits as the iPhone Medical ID. You can put in allergies, medications, illnesses, blood type – as well as the identity and contact number of your next of kin (or emergency contact).
Every time I pick up my Samsung and see the ICE icon at the top of the screen, I feel relieved.
And even though Eric’s phone is locked – at a swipe, someone can see that he has allergies – and call his WIFE.
Have you received the latest version of Farmanco Facts and it is waiting in your Inbox? Or perhaps, you receive a printed copy and it waits on the kitchen bench with all your mail, waiting to be read?
Maybe you don’t currently subscribe to Farmanco Facts, but are interested in knowing the types of articles we publish.
In case you’ve not yet read your April Farmanco Facts – see Key Points – as we hope to pique your interest and remind you to pick up your copy; and read.
“Legumes and profit,” by Eric Nankivell
Know your own enterprise margins
Decisions based on profit, not on emotions
Encourage industry research into legumes
“Spraying efficiency – optimising hectares sprayed in a day,” by Bill Campbell
Maximising hectares sprayed in a day is about maximising the spraying hours
By breaking down a daily spraying operation into the different elements, we can identify where efficiencies can be improved
The greatest improvement in efficiency is with the pit stop; how efficiently the sprayer can be filled and with minimum ferry time
Excessive speeds and low water volumes are not the way to achieve more hectares
Wider sprayers with larger tanks offer significant gains in spraying efficiency, whereas small paddock size, odd shapes and difficult terrain significantly limit spray capacity
Nurse tankers and chemical handling plants give greater efficiencies for a relatively small spend
“The evolution of WA Grain Supply infrastructure,” by Mae Connelly
Highly regarded grain supply chain expert, Mitch Morison, presented at the Farmanco 2016 Client Conference
Mr Morison explained how our supply chain needs to evolve to maintain export competitiveness
Key requirements for future success include higher throughput capacity at port, retaining access to key markets, optimal product specification, on‑farm profitability uplift, managing the farm to port rationalisation, resolution of the quality vs. quantity issue, and assessment of road user charges structure
Also included was a ‘Welcome to Peter Borstel’. Coming in July is a NEWS story on Peter Borstel – to look forward to!
Note, that every edition of Farmanco Facts includes the WA and NSW Wool and Livestock reports, provided by Richard Brake, Management Consultant