MPO Milk Bulletin 28 July 2017

Local market

Lower milk intake in June

Preliminary figures supplied by Milk SA show that the total milk intake in June 2017 of 217 million litres of milk was 3,1% less than the June 2016 intake. During the first half of 2017, 1 404 million litres were delivered to dairies, 0,4% less than in the first half of 2016.  The decrease in milk production per day from May 2017 to June 2017 was the highest since 2009. The main reasons for the lower milk intake are the continuing drought in the Eastern and Western Cape and the effect of the 2015/2016 drought and difficulties caused by disease among inland farmers. High beef prices encourage farmers to sell lower-producing animals. In spite of the lower grain prices, chances of an increase in production remain slim.

Improve production with Moo-sic to milk by

The MPO believes in trying anything and everything to help South African dairy farmers improve their profitability. After all, who couldn’t do with an increase in milk production? According to research at the University of Leicester’s School of Psychology, playing the right music to cows in the dairy parlour can increase milk production by up to 3%. A list of music that has a calming effect on cows was compiled by Modern Farmer from the findings of the study and other anecdotal evidence. That’s why the MPO is bringing you the first ever Moo-sic to milk by CD featuring 10 contemporary hits and classical music favourites.

Enter the Moo-sic competition!

Be a part of the Moo-sic movement and enter the MPO’s competition for a chance to have your “Farmer’s Favourite” track added to the CD as an eleventh bonus track! For more information and to enter the competition, click HERE.

Latest Absa Agribusiness Trends features cut in interest rates

In the latest edition of Absa Agribusiness Trends published on 21 July the move by the Reserve Bank to cut rates by 25 basis points was welcomed. In view of the rand remaining relatively strong, imports of crude oil, farming requisites, oilcake and wheat in rand value are not expected to be affected negatively by the cut in interest rates. The lower interest rates will lead to an increase in the money supply and growth in demand, which will support economic growth as consumer and business confidence starts to pick up. To view the publication, click HERE.

How does water law affect you?

Against the backdrop of a rapidly growing urban population, with water demands that are not being matched by investment in water-related infrastructure, coupled with a changing climate, the worst drought in over 100 years and competition from other sectors for water, water allocations to the agricultural sector are unlikely to increase unless the sector is able to use water more efficiently.

What does this mean for your agribusiness, as you consider your lawful water use entitlement relative to your water use footprint? How will water use be recorded, regulated and charged for in future? Could water be expropriated from you without compensation?

Most importantly, how can your agribusiness plan for the future by proactively dealing with these issues now so as to be better prepared for a potential new reality of farming with less water? In addition, how are you dealing with your waste water and should you be considering how this can be harnessed for re-use? These topics and more will be discussed by expert speakers Stephen Levetan and James Brand at an agribusiness water law seminar on 15 August at the offices of ENSafrica in Stellenbosch. To read more and RSVP, click HERE.

Managing irregularities in the agricultural sector

Manager of the MPO’s Agri Inspec, Bertus van Heerden, discussed how irregularities in the agricultural sector can be managed in a television interview on Grootplaas on 11 July.  To watch the video of the interview, click HERE.

The Big Farm Taste – from goat to beer!

Cheese, wine, craft beer, Boer goat meat, “skaapstertjies”, tripe and ice cream . . . all these delicacies and more await you at the Big Farm Taste on the farm Sandringham outside Stellenbosch on Saturday, 14 October 2017.
Agri-Expo, organiser of the popular South African Cheese Festival, promises a brand-new tasting experience of all things farm, both for Farmies and Townies. Visitors can look forward to unique combinations such as Bok&Bier (Boer goat meat and craft beer next to the braai). An array of craft and artisanal products such as wine, Karoo lamb sosaties, roosterkoek, steak, yoghurt and ice cream will be available for tasting and sale at food and wine stalls.

Visit for more information; follow Livestock on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, or contact Agri-Expo on 021-975 4440 or Press release.


International Market

Fonterra increases farmgate price

New Zealand’s Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited has announced an increase in the forecast Farmgate Milk Price of 25 cent per kilogram of milksolids (kgMS) for the upcoming 2018 season, to NZ$6.75 (US$5.09) per kgMS. According to chairman John Wilson the increase follows the ongoing rebalancing of global demand and supply and the strengthening of the international demand for dairy products which point to the start of a good season for dairy farmers and surrounding communities. To read more, click HERE.

Investment in dairy facilities in Angola

The Dairy Company of Angola (Lactiangol) has invested approximately $27 m in a new production line and manufacturing facilities, which were inaugurated in the Angolan capital, Luanda on Monday. The upgrade in facilities which will double production capacity, guarantee quality standards and update technical services in line with demand was funded by the Angola Development Bank. Production capacity at Lactiangol will increase to 1 500 kg butter per hour, 7 000 litres liquid yoghurt per day, 5 000 litres of yoghurt per day, 13 000 litres of UHT milk per hour and 20 000 litres of milk intake per hour.  To read more, click HERE.

New Codex standard for dairy permeate positive for industry

Arla Foods Ingredients welcomed the final approval of a Codex Alimentarius international standard for dairy permeate powder. For the first time the composition, quality, identity and safety of milk powders and whey permeates are subject to global, scientific criteria.  Arla Foods Ingredients states that the Codex standards will inject new life into the permeate market and open new sales opportunities for this valuable and affordable ingredient. China has so far, in the absence of a Codex standard, not allowed the sales of permeate. To read more, click HERE.

Reduce GHG emissions by managing them

A new study by the Journal of Dairy Science found that a holistic approach to farm production needs to be adopted. Organic dairy farms with well-managed grazing practices and adequate levels of concentrate in diet can both increase farm profitability and reduce GHG emission per kilogram of milk.
Lead author Di Liang said: “Herd feeding strategies and grazing practices affect on-farm GHG emissions, not only through crop production, but also by substantially changing the productivity of the herd. Managing more land as pasture, and obtaining more of the herd feed requirements from pasture, can increase GHG emissions if pasture and feed management are not optimised to maintain milk production potential.” To read more, click HERE.

Benefits of negative DCAD rations for dry cows

Most dairy farmers are familiar with the health complications that can occur around the time of calving, and the importance of good transition-cow management and nutrition.
It is important to note that even if fresh cows do not show any signs of mastitis, the calcium levels in their bloodstream might be too low. A high percentage of fresh cows might be suffering from a metabolic disease called subclinical hypocalcemia. This results in problems directly related to decreased muscle function in the body. Studies have shown a well-formulated negative DCAD ration stimulates calcium resorption from bones and is also thought to allow more calcium absorption from the intestine. To read more, click HERE.



Schedule your dairy farm training now

Helene Pheiffer, training manager at the MPO, urges milk producers to schedule their dairy farm training as soon as possible. The Institute for Dairy Technology is continuously updating its schedule of training programmes for 2017. Their courses, some of which form part of Milk SA projects, are aimed at dairy farm workers and supervisors. Click HERE for details of the training programmes offered. Please contact Jas Wasserman at 012 843 5743 or 082 490 2465 for assistance and/or to book a five-day course.

MPO helps with occupational health and safety issues

The MPO’s Institute for Dairy Technology offers a five-day training course on the occupational health and safety code of best practice for dairy farmers. The course is practical and equips participants with the knowledge they need to comply with the requirements of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Training is conducted on-farm in the language of preference. Dairy farmers who need assistance in complying with the Department of Labour’s health and safety requirements on their farms are encouraged to contact the Institute to schedule a training programme. The Institute is currently scheduling its training programmes for 2017. Click HERE for details of all the training programmes offered. Please contact Jas Wasserman at 012 843 5743 or 082 490 2465 for assistance and/or to book a five-day course.



Enter our competition!

Put your knowledge to the test and stand a chance to win. A winner will be announced every month and there are several prizes to be won. After 12 draws, a national winner will be announced at the MPO’s 2018 gala dinner. Click HERE for more information and instructions on how to enter.

Farming for the future

Profitable, sustainable and black-empowering is how the Eastern Cape’s Jeff Every describes his transformation model. Every’s focus on profit is aligned with his drive to aggressively grow the economy and create jobs. Long thought to be the “untouchable” one of the agricultural transformation process, dairy farming is tough and technical, with punishing hours. It demands of farmers that they possess a diverse range of skills and expertise. It is also capital intensive. To learn more about farming for the future based on the Amadlelo model, turn to page 38 of the July issue of The Dairy Mail. To read the digital copy of TDM, go to


Save the date – MPO Gauteng Dairy Day, 9 August 2017

Save the date for the annual MPO Gauteng Dairy Day, which will be held at Belnori Boutique Cheesery in Bapsfontein, Gauteng on 9 August. Rina Belcher has an interesting programme planned for the day, which includes a hoof cutting and dehorning demonstration. For enquiries, please contact Rina at 082 377 5698 or send an email to


Disclaimer: The MPO Milk Bulletin is compiled from sources deemed reliable. However, the publisher accepts no responsibility for any errors or the effect of any decisions based on this publication.

Milk Producers’ Organisation
The Dairy Mail

Contact us

Dr Chris van Dijk

Barbara Bieldt
Manager: Market protection and development

Dr Koos Coetzee – Economist

Philip Swart – MPO manager of member services

Published on Fri, 28th Jul 2017 - 14:48