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New level set for arable land in Mid-Canterbury

Tags: Rural

The sale of a 144 hectare farm near the Mid-Canterbury township of Methven has set a new level for arable land values in the province.

“Three Springs” farm – owned by the same family for almost 90 years – sold under the hammer at auction last month for $8.25 million + GST - equating to $57,112 per hectare.

The property had been extensively marketed by Pete Hayward of Bayleys Canterbury. The auction, held in Methven, attracted several bidders, as well as some 70 neighbouring farmers, and professionals involved in rural support businesses in the region.

In recent seasons, the irrigated farm had grown a mix of grasses, wheat, and barley. It had also previously grown potatoes, supplemented by sheep and beef grazing. The property - which features a spacious four-bedroom home with triple garage - also had an array of buildings and grain silos along with a three stand woolshed and cattle yards.

The benchmark-setting sale followed the sale of a similar arable and lamb finishing farm in Ashburton. The 148 hectare property known as “Moorepark” – marketed by Jon McAuliffe from Bayleys Canterbury – sold under the auctioneer’s hammer for $7.9 million + GST – equating to $53,328 per hectare.

“Moorepark” – which has been yielding above-average crops over the past five years due to its extensive irrigation – also drew a strong gallery of interested locals when it was sold by Bayleys at Hotel Ashburton.

Bayleys Canterbury director Ben Turner said the two recent sales reflected the confidence that is shown in investing in good tier one farms with a great location, good soils and reliable irrigation. He said the versatility of the properties was recognised by those parties who showed strong interest in buying.

Mr Turner said the “Three Springs” and “Moorepark” farm sales had rounded off a successful autumn selling period, which had seen Bayleys sell 38 Canterbury farms for a combined transaction value of $214 million.

The units included dairy farms, intensive arable units, dairy support blocks, and hill and high country properties.

“The appetite for tier-one quality rural productive properties throughout Canterbury remains high,” Mr Turner added, “with a pool of some $150 million in purchaser funding still on our books looking for opportunities as a result of missing out on the land which has transacted.”

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