October 3, 2023


Food Information

Weekly property evaluation: Farmland values in a local weather of rising financial uncertainty

4 min read


WITH listings easing and competitors slowing, this week’s property evaluation seems at some mid-year predictions for rural property demand, traits and costs.

Yesterday in Melbourne, CBRE Agribusiness director Matt Childs and PwC’s Jaclyn Hope addressed the difficulty throughout an Australian Agribusiness Farmland Values networking occasion.

Matt Childs

Mr Childs stated nationwide, high quality agricultural belongings have been persevering with to carry out properly.

“In comparison with earlier years, the quantity of competitors is decrease, however A-grade and turnkey belongings have robust attraction and are attracting good competitors from certified consumers,” he stated.

Mr Childs stated the purpose of distinction was that poorer-grade belongings are having bother transacting.

“Two years in the past, the hole between ‘good’ and ‘poor’ belongings was narrower. That has now widened as a result of a portion of the market is sitting on its fingers ready for the best property to come back alongside.”

He stated at present, consumers have been compromising much less.

“Lately, when the property market was aggressive and aggressive, some consumers have been compromising greater than they need to.”

“Now, consumers are extra affected person about property purchases and contemplate whether or not it’s appropriate for his or her current enterprise or enterprise mannequin.”

Mr Childs stated there was at the moment a low provide of property listings and a backlog of consumers, unable to safe an asset, able to transact.

“These producers might have beforehand competed for a hotly-contested alternative and missed out throughout a interval of file low provide, or they only haven’t discovered the best place.”


He stated many producers had by no means been in a greater place to purchase land and a much less aggressive market gave consumers a greater alternative to safe the best asset.

“Within the final two or three years, some distributors achieved higher costs than anticipated. Now with a lowered quantity of purchaser competitors, the market has returned to normality. The identical degree of capital progress is unlikely to be skilled within the coming 12 to 24 months.”

Mr Childs stated current main producers had skilled two or three excellent seasons, file ranges of capital progress and so, from a stability sheet perspective, they have been in an excellent place to accumulate extra land.

“On the flip-side, rising rates of interest and falling commodity costs are being fastidiously thought-about and are ruling some potential purchasers out. That explains the lowered degree of competitors.”

He stated consumers gained’t concentrate on the approaching season, slightly, the funding can be a long-term play.

“Regardless of a difficult financial atmosphere (excessive inflation, rising rates of interest, softening commodity costs and robust indications of a potential El Nino), if producers are in a robust monetary place and the best property turns into obtainable, they are going to contemplate the acquisition.”

Vital build-up in money reserves

Jaclyn Hope is a associate in PwC’s mergers and acquisitions group, with a selected concentrate on the meals and agribusiness sector.

Jaclyn Hope PwC

She informed the gathering producers, notably on the east coast, had had three nice seasons and constructed vital money reserves – mirrored by file excessive farm administration deposits (FMD) balances of circa $6 billion.

“Many farmers are cashed-up and are in purchase mode. There is no such thing as a doubt this is able to be at the moment offsetting or helping conversations with their bankers round entry to new debt.”

Ms Hope stated the market had seen and anticipated to proceed to see, robust curiosity and robust valuations for good high quality agri-farmland belongings.

“Australian agribusinesses are not any stranger to adjusting operations to cater for financial, market and seasonal dynamics. For example, for beef and sheep producers, there can be an elevated concentrate on stocking ranges and profitability evaluation round feed lotting and ending.”

Ms Hope stated agri-investors have been distinctive in the best way they regarded ‘through-the-cycle’, taking a longer-term view when making investments.

She recognized three purchaser profiles:

  • Giant household farming teams – there was a rise of sizeable household farm operators behaving extra like company traders.
  • Company / Institutional – searching for large-scale, asset-backed agribusinesses with robust cashflows.
  • Non-public fairness – whereas this group has extra of a submit farm-gate focus, it additionally has an urge for food for built-in agribusinesses.

Relying on the asset or alternative, Ms Hope stories robust inquiry from all purchaser teams.

“All sectors up and down the agriculture provide chain are exhibiting good inquiry together with an excellent mixture of home and overseas traders,” she stated.

“Top quality grazing and grain properties command essentially the most consideration and demand for these belongings ought to proceed for the rest of the 12 months.”

“Vertically built-in operations are additionally attracting a premium pushed by scale, margin seize and threat administration.”

Like Ms Hope, Mr Childs operates in a market with establishments, corporates, excessive internet worths and rich farming households.

“Many overseas and home traders are at the moment searching for alternatives to deploy funds into Australian agricultural belongings,” he stated.

Spring predictions

Mr Childs believes extra properties can be listed this spring than within the two earlier years.

“Producers have been reluctant to promote resulting from a string of fine seasons, excessive commodity costs, exceptionally low rates of interest and traditionally excessive capital progress. With the tables turning, landowners at the moment are contemplating their choices,” he stated.





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