Some rain will be handy this week before farms start to dry out.

After a dry year, farmers are feeling the pinch when it comes to the cost of hay and grain. mm224218

IF YOU dig down just a foot in your backyard, you’ll hit dry dirt.
It’s been that way for most of the year and is only set to continue as the weather warms up.
Last Sunday, it reached 27 degrees in some areas.
Meanwhile, contractors are out churning silage, as much as possible for local farmers.
Growing their own is the mantra this season due to the steep increase in the price of grain.
It started at an average of $290 a tonne in January 2018 and is now at $475, according to estimates by Dairy Australia.
That’s a $185 increase, compared to a $50 increase during the same period last year.
In January 2017, it was $255 a tonne and by October, it had risen to $305.
There was some relief in 2017, with the
average price occasionally falling. But this year has seen the price rise – or remain the same – every week.
It’s been a similar situation with the average price of hay.
Last year, the cost per tonnage ranged between $175 and $200.
In January this year, it started at $175 and is now at $485 – rising by more than $300.
Put simply: Gippsland needs more rain, according to a Dairy Australia report for the week ending October 12.
“The west of the region has some good grass growth and there is some silage being made,” the report’s commentary noted.
“Demand for fodder remains high in the region, however has eased from its peak.”
They noted most hay coming into the region is coming from western Victoria, the Goulburn Valley and the Mallee.