Regional Summary

The Murray Dairy region covers a diverse geographical landscape that encompasses the vast irrigation area, the Murray and Goulburn Rivers and includes high rain fall areas to the east including Corryong and the Mallee landscape to the west.

The Murray Dairy region is one of the largest dairy regions within Australia and produces close to 24 per cent of the nation's milk with all of the major milk processors present.  Most of the region's milk production is associated with the Goulburn and Murray River systems via irrigation schemes.                                    

The diversity of geography and climate across the region is matched by the diversity in farming systems. A range of farm business models operate within the region from low cost entry level options to high production large scale operations and everything in between. Irrigated agriculture provides the base for feed production in the region. This is supported by close proximity to cropping regions enabling access to concentrate (grains) and fibre sources (hay, straw, silages) which further boosts the region’s competitive advantage. In response to changing climatic, policy and market driven influences, there has been an emergence of highly adaptable, resilient dairy farming businesses now operating across our region.

                                                              Murray Dairy                           National
Number of farms                                      1490                                        6128
Average herd size                                    291 *                                       289
Milk production 2015-16                          2,268 million litres                   9,731 million litres
Dairy exports value (000 tonnes)            236                                         817
Share of National exports - value           29%                                        100%
Direct employment                                  8,000                                       39,000