While the majority of Australian farmers remain positive about 2014’s prospects, dry weather in the eastern states has caused overall confidence levels to slump, according to the latest Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey.

The survey – released on December 16 – found only 27 per cent of Australia’s farmers expect agricultural conditions will improve in 2014, compared with 36 per cent who agreed with that statement last quarter.

Additionally, 19 per cent expect the agricultural economy will deteriorate over the next twelve months – of which 40 per cent cite ‘seasonal conditions’ as the reason.

A total of 49 per cent of survey respondents forecast agricultural conditions will remain the same.

Despite the drops in confidence this quarter, Australian farmers remain more positive in 2013 than they have since June 2011.

Differing weather conditions across the country have influenced confidence levels to vary depending on the state in which the farmers reside.

“Farmers in Western Australia are buoyant about their prospects, with timely rains setting them up for a magnificent harvest, while farmers in New South Wales are facing more difficult conditions – with dry conditions and frost downgrading crop yields and pasture growth potential,” Rabobank Australia acting CEO Peter Knoblanche said.

If you are hoping to boost your confidence levels heading into 2014, consider arranging a farm or crop insurance policy in the new year.

While crop insurance cannot protect you and your grains from unpredictable weather, it should give you the confidence that damage caused to your crops by fire, hail, stock intrusion or overspray, won’t leave you substantially out of pocket.

If you would like more information on insurance for your farm’s important assets, get in touch with MGA Insurance Brokers today.