Prime Talk

Prime Talk


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Is the face of saleyard selling changing? This question could be answered by changes to occur at the Pakenham yards in March.

The owner and operator of Pakenham, Victorian Livestock Exchange (VLE), advised agents the Tuesday cow sale and the Monday trade sale will merge to be one sale conducted on Monday. Also affected in this is the Tuesday calf and sheep sale.

Vera Fordice came to Melbourne for university and, while touring around with her father, Bill Fordice, Mabbin, central Queensland, she found and bought a farm near Leongatha.

Vera Fordice came to Melbourne for university and, while touring around with her father, Bill Fordice, Mabbin, central Queensland, she found and bought a farm near Leongatha.

VLE chief executive Wayne Osborne said the major factor was urban encroachment.

“There are several reasons behind the change, one of the major ones is diminishing properties, due to urban development, and the changing face of hobby farms,” Mr Osborne said. 

“Adding to this is the general downturn in the size of Australia’s herd.”

VLE Pakenham has merged its sales, with the first combined auction kicking off Monday, March 19.

VLE Pakenham has merged its sales, with the first combined auction kicking off Monday, March 19.

Pakenham Stock Agents Association, Anthony Delaney, Rodwells Pakenham, said the reduction in the two-days of selling broke more than 100 years of tradition. 

“We, the agents, understand the economic decision of this occurrence but it doesn’t take away the feeling of losing a day’s selling,” Mr Delaney said.

The first day of combined selling will be March 19.

As the major commentator of the yards, over it’s lifetime, I have seen supply more than halve.

This leads me to question whether this scenario has put producers and agents on notice about the future of the Pakenham yards.

As we know, the VLE also owns the Leongatha yards, situated at Koonwarra, as well operating the Sale selling complex contract that is relinquished on March 31.

The general decrease of saleyard supply is, to some degree, due to the smaller Australian herd. However, people need to look at the number of fat cattle being sold at store markets to put this into true context.

Direct selling to processors has made big inroads to saleyard selling – and although Auctions Plus is primarily for store stock of both sheep and cattle – the idea of alternative selling is definitely out there.

An example of producers’ shift in marketing is “Gembost”, Tarwin Lower, who are preparing to offer the first of several lines of cattle, and sheep tomorrow (Friday).

In the past, on-property dispersal’s were all the rage but nowadays the operation has shifted its sights to marketing and trading stock online.

Opening this prime herd of Yarram Park blood to a much larger audience is a smart move. This Friday, 80 PTIC Hereford heifers are the first to be offered in consecutive weeks.

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