Trans­par­ent, in­de­pen­dent milk in­dex

The Cobram Courier - - NEWS -

An­tic­i­pa­tion is mount­ing for a com­mod­ity milk price in­dex, with works started and a mid-year time­line set for its re­lease.

Aus­tralian Dairy Farm­ers was re­cently briefed on key el­e­ments of the in­dex, which aims to help farm­ers bet­ter un­der­stand and in­ter­pret price sig­nals.

‘‘The in­dex is not a magic bul­let, but if done right it will im­por­tantly pro­vide in­de­pen­dent and trans­par­ent mar­ket in­for­ma­tion to dairy farm­ers that is eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble and use­ful in mak­ing de­ci­sions about their busi­nesses,’’ ADF pres­i­dent Terry Richard­son said. The in­dex will in­clude: ● an in­dex of com­mod­ity prices re­ceived by Aus­tralian dairy pro­ces­sors for cheese, but­ter, skim milk pow­der and whole milk pow­der ex­ports up­dated monthly, plus a one-year fore­cast, which will be up­dated quar­terly;

● a re­gional, ret­ro­spec­tive far­m­gate milk price in­dex, for which farm­ers will be asked to pro­vide price data via an on­line form; and

● reg­u­lar global, na­tional and re­gional eco­nomic com­men­tary that will ac­com­pany the in­dices.

‘‘The ret­ro­spec­tive far­m­gate milk price in­dex will de­pend on the par­tic­i­pa­tion of farm­ers to pro­vide data,’’ Mr Richard­son said.

‘‘The more dairy farm­ers sub­mit their pric­ing data reg­u­larly, the more valu­able the in­dex will be.’’

Deloitte Ac­cess Eco­nom­ics is de­vel­op­ing the econo­met­ric model, which will use data from sources in­clud­ing the Aus­tralian Bureau of Sta­tis­tics and Global Dairy Trade.

Ed­u­ca­tion ma­te­rial will also be pro­duced by RM Con­sult­ing Group and de­liv­ered to farm­ers at dairy in­dus­try events.

Once the in­dex is re­leased, farm­ers are en­cour­aged to give feed­back to the Depart­ment of Agri­cul­ture and Wa­ter Re­sources.

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