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Market re-set hits West Coast dairy farms

Tags: Rural

A big dairy farm on the South Island’s West Coast has been placed on the market for sale.

The 438 hectare freehold farm in the Grey Valley, inland midway between Greymouth and Westport, dwarfs most other dairying units in the region. Production history records for the property show that in the 2016/2017 season, the block milked some 1200 cows – which produced 381,540 kilograms of milk solids.

The property is being marketed for sale by Bayleys Canterbury, with offers closing on March 1. Salesperson Shari Ferguson said the vendor was seeking offers over $21,000 per hectare.

“Five years ago, good-quality West Coast dairy farms were selling for between $28,000 and $30,000 a hectare, Mrs Ferguson said.

“While some vendors still want those prices, buyers have backed off, which is why this farm in the Grey Valley is priced to meet the market.”

"Never has a farm with this scale been on the market at this value on the West Coast. It's a really good opportunity for someone to pick up a farm of quality at a very good price”

The substantial Grey Valley property for sale encompasses a trio of four-bedroom residential dwellings – including an owner’s homestead - and one additional two-bedroom worker’s cottage. Stock on the property can be bought at valuation in addition to the land, shares and support buildings.

Building infrastructure on the farm includes:

• A 56 bale rotary shed with automatic cup removers and teat sprayer is supported by a 600 cow feed pad and yard

• In shed feeding system with twin head grain crusher fed by two large aluminum silos

• Irrigation via 3 centre pivots and k lines to approx.. 310ha

Effluent on the property is collected in two large ponds before being irrigated through a K-line system. Further irrigation of the property is delivered from two consented intakes out of the Grey River. In an average season, the property is irrigated between 40 – 50 days.

Mrs Ferguson said the Grey Valley property was being sold with 616,173 Westland Milk Products shares included in the package. She said Bayleys Canterbury had already received expressions of interest from sharemilkers looking to potentially become involved with any new owner on the block.

“In line with lower milk solid payouts, the farm has run at lower than average stocking levels over the past three years. At its peak in the 2013/14 season, the property was running some 1350 cows and producing 655,806 kilogrammes of solids,” she said.

“All predictions are that Westland Milk Products has turned the corner and that now is a great time to look at buying farms supplying the company.”

“When milk solid payouts increase, there is considerable upside to increase output from the property – which is situated on two large terrace plains enabling a highly efficient pivot irrigation scheme to keep grass production at very high levels.”

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