Monday, 19 January 2015 14:59

Brilliant velvet, weak venison prices

Written by 

With dry conditions and a disappointing venison schedule, it has been a tough start to the year for many non-velvet deer farmers.

 Deer Industry New Zealand (DINZ) chair and Mid Canterbury farm advisor Andy Macfarlane is urging deer farmers to remain proactive in managing both the feed situation and their budgets.

"I've been revising a number of feed budgets over the last couple of weeks, and many deer farmers will be doing the same," he says.

While high velvet prices have velvet producers smiling, the venison schedules are not so positive, with prices within the $6.20 – $6.45/kg range once again.

"Our take on the market is that there are no major supply or demand issues – indeed it is fundamentally more sound than it was a year ago, when a supply backlog had to be cleared," says Macfarlane.

"About 70% of New Zealand venison is sold in Euros so the latest unforeseen round of European economic jitters and associated currency weakness has flowed through into venison schedules."

The NZ dollar is buying around 67 Euro cents, up from about 60 cents this time last year. The impact of this on the schedule over the past year is about 55 cents per kilo, but this will vary depending each company's European market exposure.

"The exchange rate movement over December also accounts for the difference between the current schedule and what several exporters had predicted in November last year."

Macfarlane notes that while underlying demand in Europe was firm, with a satisfactory chilled sales season just completed, the impact of the Euro weakness demonstrated the industry's urgent need to diversify markets.

"While we have good and loyal customers in Europe, it is critical for the industry to diversify its market risk."

Macfarlane notes however, that the deer industry is looking beyond the European market and DINZ are supporting that diversification through their Passion2Profit strategy.

DINZ hope this work will begin to bear fruit over the year ahead and, together with some hoped-for relief from both rain and currency, will mean a happier 2015 for deer farmers.

More like this

Deer farmer's roaring success

Southland elk farmer Tom May is no stranger to producing top quality velvet and believes that his Mayfield Elk Farm, just south of Winton, may have just set a world record.

Times will get better for deer sector

While the deer industry faces several challenges in the short term, there will be a strong rebound in New Zealand venison sales once global demand recovers.

Times will get better for deer sector

While the deer industry faces several challenges in the short term, there will be a strong rebound in New Zealand venison sales once global demand recovers.


Labour pains hurt grower

Despite struggling to find workers, fresh produce grower and trader T&G is still forging ahead with growth plans.

China demands, NZ delivers

Meat Industry Association chair John Loughlin says China is one of the most demanding export markets in the world.

Leaving on a jet plane - again!

Damien O'Connor is planning to head back to Europe again shortly to breathe oxygen into the free trade agreements that…

Machinery & Products

Helps tame the wind!

Amazone's recently released WindControl System automatically monitors and adjusts the spreading pattern to compensate for the effect of the wind…

First Claas patent hits a century

While Claas has registered more than 3,000 patents during its 108-year history, the company is currently celebrating the 100th anniversary…

JD invests in robotics

Global giant Deere and Co has acquired Silicon Valley start-up company Bear Flag Robotics, which specialises in autonomous driving technologies…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Murky waters

OPINION: Your canine crusader knows there is a great deal of unease - especially in rural NZ - about the…


OPINION: The refusal of both Damien O'Connor and PM Jacinda Ardern to release some of the correspondence they received about…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter