22 Jan 2015

Farmers looking for savings from lower fuel bills

5:44 am on 22 January 2015

Farmers under pressure from low milk payouts and falling production from lack of rain are looking to falling fuel prices to provide some financial relief.

Petrol and diesel prices at the pump have dropped by more than 40 cents a litre since October.

Federated Farmers transport spokesperson Ian Mackenzie said that should translate to savings for farmers on and off the farm.

"There are two sets of expectations. One is that direct farm costs will go down, because agriculture is a significant user of diesel, whether you're feeding out or cultivating or harvesting, making silage or just running your tractor or ute around the farm.

"It's quite probable that the greater benefit to agriculture will be in terms of shipping and transport costs of our products going to market or inputs onto the farm, which have all got to be transported by boat and by trucks. All those costs should go down significantly with the drop in oil prices."

Mr Mackenzie said farmers had not seen much in the way of lower fuel price benefits flowing through yet, although he said there was increased competition among rural servicing companies offering fuel discounts to farmers.

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