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Cattle producers celebrate the end of 2020 with record live export prices and rain


#Cattle producers in the #Top #End of the #Northern #Territory are ending 2020 on a high with the wet season delivering above-average rainfall in #December and cattle prices sitting at record levels.

#Gary #Riggs at #Lakefield #Station near #Mataranka has received around 400 millimetres this month and is still smiling after selling cattle just prior to #Christmas.

“#We got $4 a kilo for steers and $3.80 a kilogram for heifers, which is the highest price we’ve ever got,” he told ABC #Rural.

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“#We got six decks of cattle out just before #Christmas. I then ducked into town to finish the #Christmas shopping and when I got home it was pouring rain.

“#We got 74mm in about an hour. There was water everywhere so we got those cattle out just in time.”

#Mr #Riggs said a lot of #Top #End cattle had been exported out of #Darwin this month, and the money on offer was a real boost to the industry.

“These prices are something we’ve never had before, but this year has just been phenomenal with cattle prices. #It’s been pretty high all year,” he said.

“#It means a lot. #You’ve got money there to work on what you want to do, to invest, or to have a break.

“#It just takes the pressure off from a lot of years where we did it tough.”

#Cattle gather as a storm approaches #Hayfield #Station in the #Northern #Territory.(#Supplied)

#He said 2021 was shaping up well, but felt it was important the live export price did not get too high for crucial overseas markets like #Indonesia,” he said.

“I do wonder [about these record prices] and what it means at the other end because those end-consumers will need to pay a lot more for their meat.

“I hope we don’t shoot ourselves in the foot in the long-run.

#Record #December rain

#Nearby at #Gorrie #Station, the #Harding family are celebrating their wettest #December on record.

a storm on the horizon with a ute in the foreground.
A storm approaches #Gorrie #Station.(supplied: #Kate #Harding)

“#It’s been outstanding, we’ve ended up with 480mm for the month,” #Mike #Harding said.

“The waterholes are all replenished and hopefully the water table as well. #It’s going to replenish a lot of what we’ve been missing over the last few seasons.”

Weather map. December rain
#It’s been a wetter than average #December for most parts of the #Northern #Territory.(#Supplied: #Bureau of #Meteorology)

#Mr #Harding said after a poor wet season last year, cattle producers were starting to get nervous about the much-hyped #La #Nina forecast.

“#We were starting to wonder and worry it wasn’t coming, but here it is, and we’re all very grateful,” he said.

#Territory-wide it has been an extremely wet month for a lot of cattle stations.

#Daly #Waters received more than triple its #December average and a lot of stations in #Central #Australia got rain thanks to two tropical lows that swept in from the #Kimberley.

#Mt #Denison #Station, 300 kilometres north-west of #Alice #Springs, recorded its wettest day on record when it posted 151mm last week.



[ source link ]
https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2020-12-31/record-cattle-prices-and-big-rain-ends-2020-for-nt-pastoralists/13017820

##Cattle #producers #celebrate #record #live #export #prices #rain

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