Punt on summer grains for cash flow

Quick summer crops could provide cash flow in the event of a rare rain event

Cropping
A drought on domestic sunflower seed has pushed prices to $1400/t.

A drought on domestic sunflower seed has pushed prices to $1400/t.

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Here's betting that a summer rain event could present an opportunity to some northern parts. So, how best to generate cash flow?

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The outlook for substantial rain before Christmas remains grim, with a record high Indian Ocean Dipole affecting north-west rain bands.

But as the computer forecast models look to the new year, there is a glimmer of hope that the north might get rain from Queensland and if that happens producers should consider how best to capitalise.

Peter Brodie, PB Agrifoods at Toowoomba, said savvy growers were already locking-in orders with fast growing crops like mung bean, millet, sorghum and sunflower the likely contenders.

At 90 days to grow and with a likely price of $1300/t, mungbeans would suite a January rain event. One grower on the Liverpool Plains has ordered seed for 400 hectares, just in case.

Millets at $1200, when usually they come back at $500 to $600/t are another seasonal opportunity while sunflowers at up to $1400/t look promising. Grower beware, however - good weight Bulgarian sunflower, at 45kg/hl, sells for $1350 after heat treatment.

With limited stocks of niche seed like white sorghum, the price back to the grower of $360 to $370 looks likely unless it rains. One grower at Jandowae, Qld was planting Liberty variety this week.

"When it rains, growers need need a quick crop for cash flow," said Mr Brodie.

Short growing mung beans could capture a summer rain event and provide cash flow, with some growers locking in seed deals now.

Short growing mung beans could capture a summer rain event and provide cash flow, with some growers locking in seed deals now.

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