Articles & Presentations

Make Australia Dairy Farming GREAT Again

Presentation to Launceston (Tasmania, Australia) Seminar – June 2018

“Delivering Sustainable Profitability to the Australian Dairy Industry”

By David Beca


This was initially developed for a presentation to the Victorian (Australia) Stock Feed Manufacturers Dairy Forum in June 2017. It was subsequently developed further for presentations in Uruguay, Argentina and South Africa, before further development for this Tasmania (Australia) seminar.

The presentation has also had a title of “The challenges and opportunities facing Australia dairy farming to delivering reliable profitability and growth” and “Critical success factors for southern hemisphere dairy farmers…and what happens when you get this wrong (as in Australia)”.


This presentation covers the following areas:


An initial review of growth in annual milk supply shows that the New Zealand, South African and Tasmanian (Australia) dairy industries have been consistently growing over the last 17 years, while the Victorian (Australia), Argentinian and Uruguayan industries have effectively stopped growing at some point.

When milk price is reviewed over this period, it is clear that this has not been a relevant factor for the absence of growth in Victoria (Australia), Argentina & Uruguay.

When Victoria (Australia) is compared to New Zealand over the last 15 years, then it is Victoria’s much larger increases in cost of production which can be identified as the primary problem, with this being impacted by the more significant changes to farm production systems in Victoria. Tasmania (Australia) is in a significantly better position than Victoria, although the same general trends in loss of profitability are occurring.

The presentation then looks at what might need to change for these trends to be reversed, including what might be learnt from South Africa, which was in a similar position in the 1990’s but then made some significant changes to recover their profitability.

To read the full paper please click here.

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