Colliers International appointed to sell substantial Pistachio Farm in Wimmera region
Agents are preparing for a strong contest for a Victorian pistachio farm as demand for local product exceeds supply and paves the way for expansion of the Australian industry.
Colliers International’s Jesse Manuel and Tim Altschwager have been appointed by Matthew Caddy and Keith Crawford of McGrathNicol in their capacity as Joint and Several Receivers and Managers of C.E. Lee Pty Limited to market for sale The Pistachio Farm located at 1820 Boundary Road in Telopea Downs in Victoria’s Wimmera region.
Mr Manuel said the sale of the Pistachio Farm was expected to draw interest from the entire nut sector in Australia as well as the US, with California being one of the largest pistachio producing regions in the world.
“This sale presents an excellent opportunity for existing pistachio producers to add to their current holdings, or for other nut or horticultural producers to add product and market diversity to their business,” he said. “We also expect interest from investors seeking exposure to the agribusiness sector in an industry which is currently experiencing strong prices for its product.
The 312.2ha (approx.) property comprises a 103ha mature pistachio orchard, a large area of plantable land with irrigation mains and sub-mains in place, operational buildings and extensive irrigation infrastructure.
Mr Altschwager said the current proprietors purchased the orchard in 2008.
“They have made considerable improvements to the irrigation infrastructure and systems, increasing water output capacity throughout the orchard and improving the growth and health of the trees which has led to greater crop yields,” he said.
Mr Manuel said the popularity of nuts and nut products was growing not only in Australia but around the world.
“As local demand for pistachio exceeds supply, there is potential to expand the Australian pistachio industry’s share of the local and global pistachio markets,” he said. “The farm gate value of Australian pistachios is currently $9million and this is expected to rise to $30million by 2025*.
“Global awareness of the health benefits of nuts, including pistachios, is driving an increased demand for nuts and nut products. Local Australian demand for pistachios has steadily increased by approximately 9% per annum since 2000*.
“While the productivity of the Australian pistachio industry is increasing, its production only supplies approximately 40% of local demand. The Australian pistachio market is dominated by imported nuts, indicating the potential for the local industry to expand."
Australia’s pistachio industry incorporates around 45 growers with about 950ha (approx.) of trees planted, The Pistachio Farm is the fourth largest, accounting for over 10% of commercial pistachio plantings in Australia.
“Australian production in recent years has averaged around 1,200 tonnes in-shell a year, however improvements in the industry has resulted in rising yields with the ‘on year’ of 2015 producing a record crop around 2,000 tonnes,” Mr Manuel said. “The Pistachio Growers Association estimates that by 2020 this production will rise to 3,000 tonnes per year – or around $25million.
“In regard to returns from pistachios, the PGA reports that price levels hovered around the $5 to $6 per kilogram for many years up to 2011 before beginning to rise every year up until 2015 when the price reached $13 per kilogram.
“This trend almost mirrors the recent price lift and value levels that almond producers have experienced over the same period, noting however that pistachio price levels have remained slightly higher overall than almonds."
The Pistachio Farm property is located around 350km south east of Adelaide and 440km north west of Melbourne.
The property is for sale by Expressions of Interest closing Wednesday March 23 at 4pm.
*According to the Australian Nut Industry Council