Water for Fodder
Round 2 of the Water for Fodder program will not proceed.
The Water for Fodder program is part of the Australian Government's Drought Response, Resilience and Preparedness Plan.
Under the program, 40 gigalitres of water was produced from the Adelaide Desalination Plant and an equivalent amount released upstream from the River Murray.
Farmers in the southern connected Murray–Darling Basin were able to apply to purchase South Australian River Murray water (Trading Zone 12) at a discounted rate. The water had to be used to grow fodder and pasture. This helped farmers to maintain their breeding stock during the drought.
40 gigalitres of water was available in Round 1 for use in the 2019–20 water year.
Round 1 Review
A review of Round 1 was conducted. Read more about the review.
Following the review of Round 1 and consultation with South Australia, the Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia, the Hon. Keith Pitt MP, has announced that there will not be a second round of the Water for Fodder program.
Remaining funding will be redirected to other programs that benefit farmers and communities in the Murray–Darling Basin.
While Round 1 was successful, more water is available in the southern Basin due to autumn rainfall. This has reduced the need for Round 2 as an emergency drought response.
Fodder and water markets have also softened:
- Seasonal conditions have improved while drought recovery continues. Read the Murray–Darling Basin drought update.
- Dairy Australia has found that hay prices have fallen by 40 per cent in the Murray and Goulburn valleys since January. Read Dairy Australia’s Hay report.
- Temporary water prices decreased by over 70 per cent on average across the southern-connected Basin between January and June. ABARES has forecasted prices to remain lower in 2020-21 than 2019-20. Read ABARES’ water market outlook.
We conduct compliance activities to ensure water provided under the program is used to grow fodder.
An agreement between Australian Government and South Australian Government made the Water for Fodder program possible.
You can email questions to Water for fodder.