Sheep breeding growth

SMILING: NSW Department of Primary Industries sheep development officer Geoff Casburn says gross margins for sheep enterprises has grown in 2015.
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The latest NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) research shows sheep breeding enterprises performed well in 2015.

Many of the sheep breeding enterprises have been delivering 12 to 17 per cent increases in gross margins, equal to a rise of three to five dollars per dry sheep equivalent (DSE).

DPI sheep development officerGeoff Casburnsaid the modelling compared gross margins for 10 typical sheep enterprises.

“The best results were for 20 micron Merino ewes joined to a maternal meat ram with a gross margins of $35.93 per DSE – that’s delivering $359 per hectare with an increase of $5.13 per DSE compared with last year,” Mr Casburn said.

“Those results are due mainly to an increase in the market price for first cross ewe hoggets and an increase in prices for both Merino and crossbred wool.

“Even though this enterprise had to purchase replacement ewes, the cost was offset by selling double the number of ewe hoggets and a similar number of cast for age ewes.”

A self-replacing 18 micron wool enterprise had the next highest gross margin increase at $4.17 per DSE, which was driven by a rise in wool value and the sale value of excess ewes.

The 20 micron Merino and first cross ewe enterprises joined to terminal rams continued to perform well, even though they experienced a reduction in gross margins of 13 and 8 percent respectively, due mainly to the higher cost of replacements.

Enterprises with the highest gross margins also had the highest costs per hectare, which were off-set by higher returns.

Mr Casburn said self-replacing 18 micron merino and 20 micron Merino enterprises joined to either terminal or maternal meat rams delivered the best average performance in the last five years, 2011 to 2015.

“A 20 micron self-replacing Merino enterprise with 25 per cent of ewes joined to a terminal ram performed surprisingly well and it appears to cover all bases – breeding replacements, wool production and sale of prime lambs,” he said.

“The average performance of many sheep enterprises in the last five years was similar to a 2015 wheat enterprise with a threetonne grain yield per hectare and grain price of $240 per tonne.”

GMs are calculated based on running 10 DSE per hectare, taking account of variable costs directly associated with each enterprise and which does not include fixed costs such as labour, machinery or livestock inventories.

Full 2015 gross margin outputs are available online, 老域名dpi.nsw.gov备案老域名/agriculture/farm-business/budgets/livestock.

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