Late sown soy a win for 2020

Promising harvest after short soy season

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A very even paddock of Hayman variety soybeans during natural leaf fall, ahead of harvest near Casino. Dom Hogg, supply chain manager with Mara Global Foods says the domestic market for quality edible beans remains strong.

A very even paddock of Hayman variety soybeans during natural leaf fall, ahead of harvest near Casino. Dom Hogg, supply chain manager with Mara Global Foods says the domestic market for quality edible beans remains strong.

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Drought ending rains didn't moisten the Northern Rivers floodplain country until Australia Day, so considering the short season 2020's NSW soybean crop is promising indeed.

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Record prices of $950 a tonne for edible grade, clear hilum soybeans are rewarding growers on the Northern Rivers, parts of the Darling Downs and Northern Tablelands.

Traditional Asgrow variety A6785, planted early in the season, yielded well where they weren't damaged by flood water. Richmond variety also performed and rebounded in saturated paddocks on the Tweed, despite mud covering leaves during February floods.

The champion of the season was late planted Hayman, which proved it could adapt despite most of the rain falling after Australia Day.

Supply chain manager with processor Mara Global Foods, Dom Hogg, praised Hayman's ability to keep growing while flowering, a key factor in this variety's ability to yield well during a short season.

Anywhere out of the water that could handle the rain flourished bringing $950 a tonne which was unprecedented. - Nathan Ensbey

Grafton DPI soybean researcher and grower, Nathan Ensbey, said the Clarence Valley enjoyed above average yield and record prices.

"Soy farmed really well this year on the Clarence," he said. "We dodged a bullet with the flood."

The dry weather that followed ripened the grain evenly and provided an ideal harvest.

"Anywhere out of the water that could handle the rain flourished bringing $950 a tonne which is unprecedented. "It's giving growers a much needed good return."

Mark North, at Cudgen, replanted drowned Hayman after February and will get a harvest but said he was most impressed with the way crop planted ahead of the wet recovered and grew back to average 3.65t/ha, just south of his 4t/ha target.

Meanwhile there remains excellent support for producers interested in increasing yield while maintaining quality associated with a graded bean for food.

Mara Global Foods CEO Ross Larsson said growers adopting a sound nutritional program would likely increase yield across the majority of their paddocks in coming years, offsetting any falls in price - although he stated it was unlikely quality soybeans would not fall far below $800/t.

During the drought end users got a taste for imported kibble and flours, which will put pressure on prices but they remain keen on Australian product. "The support for Australian grown is unbelievable," Mr Larsson said.

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