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How farmers see the future

Rural Confidence Survey

For over fifteen years we have worked together with an independent research organisation to have access to up to date insights into what the farming community is thinking and how they respond to the ever changing conditions. To do this, we conduct a Rural Confidence Survey, interviewing an average of 450 farmers across New Zealand on a quarterly basis. Monitoring outlook and general sentiment in the country's major agricultural industries, it is one of the most robust studies of its type.

Latest Survey Results: March Quarter 2024

  • Farmer confidence in the broader agri economy has risen strongly for the second consecutive quarter but remains at low levels overall.
  • Government policy (28 per cent) and rising commodity prices (20 per cent) emerged as the major reasons for farmer optimism in the latest survey, while rising input prices (63 per cent) and falling commodity prices (45 per cent) continue to be the major concerns among those with a negative outlook.
  • Farmers’ confidence in their own farm business performance also rose strongly across all sector groupings. Growers continue to be the most optimistic about the year ahead for their own businesses and sheep and beef farmers the most pessimistic.
  • The number of farmers self-assessing their own farm business as unviable increased from last quarter and now sits at nine per cent (six per cent previously).
  • Farm investment intentions remain relatively unchanged from last quarter with the majority of farmers expecting their investment levels to remain the same as the previous 12 months.