Global Ag View: Livestock bears brunt of Australian bush fires

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Australia’s bush fires have had a devastating impact on the country’s agricultural output.

No official figures on livestock losses have been released, but Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) have estimated nine per cent of the national cattle herd were in regions which have been significantly impacted by the fires, with a further 11 per cent in partially affected areas.

 

The national beef herd is 28 million head.

 

In the first five months of Australia’s dairy year (beginning in July 2019) national milk production was 5.3 per cent lower than the same period in 2018, at 4.014 billion litres, according to Government estimates.

 

Production is expected to be impacted heavily in December, especially as two thirds of production is in the fire-hit state of Victoria.

 

Sheep farmers have also been hit hard, with 13 per cent of the 66 million strong national flock in significantly impacted regions and a further 17 per cent in partially impacted areas, according to MLA.

 

Cedric Porter

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