Report

New-season Farm Confidence Survey 

This report summarises the July 2022 Federated Farmers’ New-Season Farm Confidence survey results. The survey is undertaken twice a year (January and July); this is the 27th iteration.

Key Messages

The July 2022 survey saw a further sharp downturn in farmer confidence to hit a new record low since the survey began in July 2009. The result was even worse than January 2022, which held the previous record low. 
Key points follow: 
  • General economic conditions (current): A net 47.8% of respondents consider current economic conditions to be bad, down 55.6 points from January 2022 when a net 7.8% considered conditions to be good.
  • General economic conditions (expectations): A net 80.9% of respondents expect general economic conditions to worsen over the next 12 months, up 16.9 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 64.0% expected conditions to worsen.
  • Farm profitability (current): A net 55.1% of respondents reported making a profit currently, down 6.0 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 61.1% reported making a profit.
  • Farm profitability (expectations): A net 53.1% of respondents expect their profitability to decline over the next 12 months, up 11.9 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 41.2% expected it to decline.
  • Farm production (expectations): A net 0.5% of respondents expect their production to decline over the next 12 months, down 2.3 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 1.8% expected it to increase. This is the first survey in its history that there has been a net negative score for production.
  • Farm spending (expectations): A net 54.6% of respondents expect their spending to increase over the next 12 months, up 1.9 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 52.7% expected their spending to increase.
  • Farm debt (expectations): A net 15.3% of respondents expect their debt to reduce over the next 12 months, down 15.6 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 30.9% expected their debt to reduce.
  • Ability to recruit (experienced): A net 44.3% of respondents reported it has been harder to recruit skilled and motivated staff over the past six months, down 4.3 points on the January 2022 survey when a net 48.6% reported it has been harder.
  • Greatest concerns (current): The three greatest concerns for farmers were Climate Change Policy & ETS; Regulation & Compliance Costs; Input Costs; and Debt, Interest, Banks.
  • Highest government priorities: The four highest priorities farmers want the Government to address were Fiscal Policy; Economy & Business Environment; Regulation & Compliance Costs; and Biosecurity.
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