Apathy was the winner

November 30, 2013

Apathy was the winner in the Christchurch east by-election.

Voter turnout  is estimated to be 41.4% of the 33,555 people enrolled.

Given Labour has always held the seat theirs no surprise in its candidate Poto Williams keeping it for the party.

Preliminary results are:

BAKER, Leighton Conservative Party   487
DOOCEY, Matthew National Party    3,506
GASKIN, Ian Independent   19
HOLLAND, Adam Independent   31
LAMBERT, Paula Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party  56
LICHTWARK, Jenner Democrats for Social Credit  20
MOORHOUSE, David Green Party  926
PARK, Sam Independent   75
VEALE, Gareth ACT New Zealand   56
WILLIAMS, Poto Labour Party 8,119
Candidate Informals  23
TOTAL  13,318

Closed and counting

November 30, 2013

Polling booths have closed in the Christchurch East by-election and votes are being counted.

It’s always been a Labour seat so in spite of the strong campaign run by National candidate  Matthew Doocey he’s not expected to take it.

In fact, if John Armstrong is correct, apathy will be the winner.


A Scottish Soldier

November 30, 2013

It’s still St Andrew’s day.

 


Oamaru gingerbread house in WSJ

November 30, 2013

There’s a little piece of Oamaru in the Wall Street Journal:

Hot properties Home Sweet Home is a slide show on gingerbread houses.

One of those featured is magnificent castle crafted by the owners of Oamaru’s  Pen-y-bryn Lodge, about which the WSJ says:

VAST LABYRINTHINE CASTLE | Fairy-tale gorging at its finest! Many tasty turrets; 87 bedrooms, most with partial views of exhausted bakers. Includes marzipan support staff.


Word of the day

November 30, 2013

Och – an expression of surprise, contempt, annoyance, impatience, or disagreement; sentence connector; an expression used to preface a remark, gain time, etc.


Saturday’s smiles

November 30, 2013

Since it’s St Andrew’s Day  . . .

Old Archie had served the Railway Company as Guard on the local railway for nearly fifty years, and when his time to retire arrived he found the parting a severe wrench. Hearing how keenly their old employee felt leaving the service, the company arranged to present him with an old coach to keep at the bottom of his garden to serve as a daily reminder of his active days on the line.

One very wet day some of his friends called to see Archie and were informed by his wife that he would be ‘on the train.’ Going down the garden they found Archie sitting on the step of the carriage, smoking furiously at his pipe and with an old sack over his shoulders to protect him from the downpour.

‘Hello, Archie,’ his friends greeted him, ‘why are ye no inside in a day like this?’

‘Can ye no see?’ replied Archie with a nod towards the windows, ‘they only sent me a non-smoker.’


5 Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays

November 30, 2013

Next month has five Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.

But don’t believe the emails and Facebook posts which tells you this happens only once every 823 years.

Any month with 31 days which starts on Sunday has five Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.


Rural round-up

November 30, 2013

Stressed rural families urged to get their men talking:

Families of farmers in Marlborough’s Awatere Valley are being urged to give the men on the farm the chance to talk.

The Top of the South Rural Support Trust says some rural males who live very close to the centre of August’s magnitude 6.6 earthquake at Lake Grassmere, are struggling to cope with the aftermath.

The trust says that it has observed serious signs of stress and depression.

Its field facilitator, Ian Blair, has this advice: “You got to get them into a relaxed attitude, and many times, the easiest way to do that is to sit round the table with a cup of tea. . .

Better management could cut farm emissions – study:

A study suggests greenhouse gas emissions and nitrogen leaching on farms can be signficantly reduced if farmers improve they way they manage their properties and use available technology.

The study the Motu Economic and Public Policy Research group used data from more than 260 farms to estimate the potential for reducing emissions and leaching.

Senior fellow Dr Suzi Kerr said the research found the best dairy farm operators are getting at least twice the milk production for each kilogram of nitrogen released. .  .

Paua battle almost over:

Last Wednesday, the Ministry for Primary Industries convened a meeting of over 15 key stakeholder representatives at Otakou Marae, Dunedin in an attempt to resolve the long-running battle over a proposal to open up closed populations of paua to commercial fishing.

Nine months after passionate New Zealanders first mobilised in their fight to protect one of the treasures of New Zealand’s south, the battle is finally drawing to a close.

This was the last of 3 meetings convened by MPI to uncover and report on further evidence and seek agreement from all parties about paua and paua diving in these four closed areas. . .

Emerging organic contaminants: A threat to New Zealand freshwaters? Sally Gaw:

Emerging organic contaminants are a burgeoning and extremely diverse class of contaminants that are not routinely monitored and that have the potential to have adverse ecological and human health effects. Emerging organic contaminants (EOCs) include both naturally occurring and synthetic chemicals.

Many of these contaminants may have been present in the environment for a long time but are only now have they become detectable due to advances in analytical chemistry. EOCs include active ingredients in personal care and domestic cleaning products, pesticides, plasticisers, pharmaceuticals, steroid hormones excreted by humans and animals, surfactants and veterinary medicines. Many EOCs are everyday chemicals in widespread use in consumer products. Much research is being devoted internationally to understanding the sources, environmental fate and adverse effects of EOCs. . .

Corbans wins Pure Elite Gold at Air New Zealand Wine Awards:

 Corbans has produced an outstanding result at this year’s prestigious Air New Zealand Wine Awards, with two of their Homestead range being awarded gold medals. 

Corbans Homestead Sauvignon Blanc 2012 won a ‘Pure Elite Gold’ at the Awards Gala in Queenstown over the weekend, one of only seven Sauvignon Blancs to receive the accolade.

The Sauvignon Blanc and Corbans Homestead Riesling 2012 had earlier won a ‘Pure Gold’ in their respective classes for their 100% sustainable wines. . .


1,000 pipers

November 30, 2013

My father and my maternal forbears were all Scottish.

In memory of them and for everyone else with tartan genes who celebrates St Andrew’s Day:

P.S. And for Andrei, whose name day it is and who I know appreciates and knows a lot about music, though I’m not sure if that extends to the pipes.


Democratic processes

November 30, 2013

Electoral law requires parties to use democratic processes in selecting candidates.

Whether Labour’s policy of a female quota for its caucus is a moot point.

So too is the way the Green party is dealing with David Hay who announced he’s challenging co-leader Russel Norman:

The man who challenged Green Party co-leader Russel Norman for the leadership believes the party is trying to kick him off the list.

David Hay says the party’s Candidate Selection and Electoral Process Committee (CSPEC) has recommended to the party’s executive committee that he shouldn’t be in the candidate pool next year.

“I don’t know exactly why the CSEPC made its negative recommendation, but if the party executive accepts it, that would prevent me from being ranked on the party list and therefore from becoming a Green MP next year.”

Mr Hay has been refused a copy of the committee’s report to the executive.

The executive had a tele-conference on October 22, but could not make a decision on his candidacy, Mr Hays says.

“The vote was split 3-6 with some abstentions. Under party rules a 75 percent majority is required for a decision. I have asked executive to make a final decision tomorrow, by simple majority if necessary. I do not intend to appeal it.”. . .

Parties must have the right to determine whether or not someone is suitable to be a candidate but they must use democratic processes to do so.

Even if the man whose candidacy is under question gives permission,  is going against the party’s rule requiring a 75% majority for the decision democratic?

 

 


Subverted, discredited, corrupted

November 30, 2013

The Herald gives another reason to vote yes in the referendum on the partial sale of a few state assets:

When the Greens couldn’t get their own way in Parliament they were wrong to use a device for citizens who can’t be heard in the House.

This is the fifth referendum held under CIR legislation.

But this one is different in one respect. Previous referendums were initiated by groups outside Parliament, they were genuine citizens’ initiatives.

This one was initiated by the Green Party. A democratic device designed to give a voice to citizens outside the House of Representatives has been co-opted by citizens who already have a tax-funded voice in the House.

Not only that, the Greens used some of their parliamentary funding to pay people to circulate the petition. All this because they failed to get their way in the House. They have discredited – not to say corrupted – the citizens’ initiative, reducing it to a second serve for privileged players.

CIR’s are supposed to be for citizen’s outside parliament who want to make a point to politicians. They are not supposed to be used by those already in parliament.

They are designed precisely for issues where a considerable body of public opinion feels it has not been heard with sufficient force in Parliament or any other forum. It would be hard for the most inveterate opponents of asset sales to argue their view hasn’t been represented with enough force in Parliament and the media.

The case against asset sales could not have been made more strongly than it has been by Labour and the Greens. Labour made the issue the central plank of its last election campaign, plastering the landscape with anti-sale billboards. Both parties then fought the legislation at every stage and finally, on the eve of the first float, announced an electricity policy that helped devalue the stock.

Their view accorded with the majority in every poll on the subject but the issue has hardly made a dent in the support of National overall. Clearly many voters who do not like asset sales, like the Government nevertheless. The referendum will say nothing new. . .

I’d be surprised if a majority vote yes when those who want more than 49% could add to the no votes. But some people might vote yes simply to vote against the subversion of the process and the Greens who have put so much effort, and money, into doing that subversion.


That’s why I’m in politics – Key

November 30, 2013

When Prime Minister John Key was in the Waitaki electorate a few months ago he met a young, single mother who had only $18 a week left for food after paying her bills.

He told her she’d be better off in work, even if was only part-time.

A few weeks later Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean called the PM to tell him the woman had done a course, got a job working 30 hours a week and doubled her income.

 This young woman has taken the steps that will improve her chances of a better life. Her future is brighter and that’s why I’m in politics.


Saturday soapbox

November 30, 2013

Saturday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, to muse or amuse – and to support #gigatownoamaru .

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors - Plato.


November 30 in history

November 30, 2013

1554 Philip Sidney, English courtier, soldier, and writer, was born (d. 1586).

1667 Jonathan Swift, Irish writer and satirist, was born (d. 1745).

1700 – Battle of Narva — A Swedish army of 8,500 men under Charles XII defeated a much larger Russian army at Narva.

1718 – Swedish king Charles XII died during a siege of the fortress Fredriksten in Norway.

1782 – American Revolutionary War: Treaty of Paris — Representatives from the United States and Great Britain signed preliminary peace articles (later formalised as the 1783 Treaty of Paris).

1786 – Peter Leopold Joseph of Habsburg-Lorraine, Grand Duke of Tuscany, promulgated a penal reform making his country the first state to abolish the death penalty. Consequently, November 30 is commemorated by 300 cities around the world as Cities for Life Day.

1803 – In New Orleans, Louisiana, Spanish representatives officially transferred the Louisiana Territory to a French representative.

1804 – The Democratic-Republican-controlled United States Senate began an impeachment trial against Federalist-partisan Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase.

1810  Oliver Winchester, American gunsmith, was born (d. 1880).

1824 – First ground was broken at Allenburg for the building of the original Welland Canal.

1829 – First Welland Canal opened for a trial run.

1835 Mark Twain, American writer, was born  (d. 1910).

1853 – Crimean War: Battle of Sinop — The Imperial Russian Navy under Pavel Nakhimov destroyed the Ottoman fleet under Osman Pasha at Sinop, a sea port in northern Turkey.

1864 – American Civil War: Battle of Franklin — The Army of Tennessee led by General John Bell Hood mounted a dramatically unsuccessful frontal assault on Union positions commanded by John McAllister Schofield around Franklin, Tennessee, Hood lost six generals and almost a third of  his troops.

1868 – The inauguration of a statue of King Charles XII of Sweden.

1872 – The first-ever international football match took place at Hamilton Crescent, Glasgow, between Scotland and England.

1874 -  Sir Winston Churchill, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Nobel laureate,was born (d. 1965).

1886 – The Folies Bergère staged its first revue.

1902 – American Old West: Second-in-command of Butch Cassidy’s Wild Bunch gang, Kid Curry Logan, was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment with hard labour.

1908 – A mine explosion in the mining town of Marianna, Pennsylvania killed 154.

1934 – The steam locomotive Flying Scotsman became the first to officially exceed 100mph.

1936 – The Crystal Palace was destroyed by fire.

1939 – Winter War: Soviet forces crossed the Finnish border in several places and bombed Helsinki and several other Finnish cities, starting the war.

1940 – Lucille Ball married Desi Arnaz in Greenwich, Connecticut.

1942 – Guadalcanal Campaign: Battle of Tassafaronga — A smaller squadron of Japanese destroyers led by Raizō Tanaka defeated a US cruiser force under Carleton H. Wright.

1949 the first National government was elected in New Zealand, led by Sidney Holland.

Election of first National government

1953 – Edward Mutesa II, the kabaka (king) of Buganda was deposed and exiled to London by Sir Andrew Cohen, Governor of Uganda.

1953 June Pointer, American singer (Pointer Sisters), was born (d. 2006).

1954 – In Sylacauga, the Hodges Meteorite crashed through a roof and hit a woman taking an afternoon nap in the only documented case of a human being hit by a rock from space.

1955  Billy Idol (born William Michael Albert Broad), British musician, was born.

1965 Ben Stiller, American actor, was born.

1966 – Barbados gained independence.

1967 – The People’s Republic of South Yemen gained independence.

1967 – The Pakistan Peoples Party was founded by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto.

1971 – Iran seized the Greater and Lesser Tunbs from the United Arab Emirates.

1981 – Cold War: Representatives from the United States and the Soviet Union began to negotiate intermediate-range nuclear weapon reductions in Europe.

1989 – Deutsche Bank board member Alfred Herrhausen was killed by a Red Army Faction terrorist bomb.

1993 – U.S. President Bill Clinton signed the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (the Brady Bill) into law.

1994 – MS Achille Lauro fire off Somalia coast.

1995 – Official end of Operation Desert Storm.

1998 – Exxon and Mobil signed a $73.7 billion agreement to merge, creating Exxon-Mobil, the world’s largest company.

1999 – In Seattle, protestests against the WTO meeting by anti-globalization protesters caught police unprepared and forced the cancellation of opening ceremonies.

1999 – British Aerospace and Marconi Electronic Systems merged to form BAE Systems, Europe’s largest defense contractor and the fourth largest aerospace firm in the world.

2004 – Longtime Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings of Salt Lake City, Utah finally lost, leaving him with US$2,520,700, television’s biggest game show winnings.

2004 – Lion Air Flight 538 crash landed in Surakarta, Central Java, killing 26.

2005 – John Sentamu became the first black archbishop in the Church of England with his enthronement as the 97th Archbishop of York.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


Word of the day

November 29, 2013

Symploce -  a rhetorical term for the repetition of words or phrases at both the beginning and end of successive clauses or verses; simultaneous use of anaphora and epistrophe.


Rural round-up

November 29, 2013

Irrigation ‘doesn’t always mean dairying’ – Tim Fulton:

A farm adviser who did financial estimates for the Ruataniwha and Central Plains irrigation schemes says access to irrigation doesn’t lead farmers automatically to dairying.

Hugh Eaton, from Macfarlane Rural Business, outlined the options at an irrigation field day at the Rathgen family’s mixed-farming operation near Timaru.

The Rathgens have a home farm at Esk Valley, a dairy block at St Andrews and another at nearby Otaio, some of which may join the proposed Hunter Downs scheme. . .

Nitrate in Canterbury groundwater - Carl Hanson:

Nitrate concentrations in Canterbury groundwater have been prominent in the media recently. Headlines have included phrases like “ticking time bomb”, “scaremongering” and “freaking out much of Canterbury”.

What I want to do in this article is to present the state of nitrate concentrations in Canterbury groundwater, and the trends we see in those concentrations, as objectively as I can, avoiding any emotive language.

First, the concentrations. Based on the data from our regional long-term monitoring programme, which includes approximately 300 wells distributed across the region, nitrate concentrations in Canterbury groundwater fall into two groups:

Sharing ideas in the global farming village – Sue O’Dowd:

Taranaki sheep and beef farming identity Bryan Hocken loves to play host.

He presents a unique blend of bonhomie, humour, a passion for his industry and a ready-to-share approach to anyone who happens to pop along to his 485 hectare Tarata farm, about 25 kilometres east of Inglewood.

Not that you would just pop along.

The farm seems remote after a picturesque drive over the winding Tarata Saddle and along the 3km Toe Toe Rd beside the Waitara River.

On the journey traffic is scarce so a single traffic light in the middle of nowhere on the road to the farm raises a chuckle – as do a plethora of signs saying things like “Wannabe Dairy Farm” and “High St”. . .

Synlait Farms shareholders keen to cash in – Alan Williams:

Synlait Farms shareholders have raced to cash in on the takeover offer led by China’s Shanghai Pengxin group.

The acceptance level had reached 91.16% by last Tuesday, meeting the 90% minimum level that was a condition of the offer just more than three weeks after the offer was received by shareholders and well inside the original December 6 closing date.

SFL Holdings, the vehicle through which Shanghai Pengxin and partners Juliet Maclean and John Penno are making the offer, has extended the date to December 20. . .

Research into apricots ‘exciting’ - Yvonne O’Hara:

Research being carried out at Plant and Food Research (PFR) in Clyde will contribute to higher-quality and better-tasting apricots that ripen more slowly and reach overseas markets in better condition.

Scientist Jill Stanley, based in Clyde, and Dr Ringo Feng, who is based in Auckland, are looking at fruit respiration and ethylene production, as well as fruit maturity, light levels, wood age and atmospheric modification.

Ethylene is a naturally-occurring gaseous hormone given off by the fruit, which accelerates ripening. A range of seedlings have been bred at the Clyde Research Centre which have characteristics that include low ethylene production. . . .

Research targets women - Yvonne O’Hara:

Dairy Womens’ Network (DWN) has launched Project Pathfinder, a programme designed to encourage more women in the dairy industry to take on leadership roles at community and governance levels.

DWN’s trust board deputy chairwoman Cathy Brown, of Tauranga, said DWN had received $180,000 from the Sustainable Farming Fund to develop the three-year project in association with DairyNZ and AgResearch.

”We are at the beginning [of the project] and most of the research will be done in year one,” Mrs Brown said.

One of the first steps was to carry out a survey about dairying women in business and in leadership roles. It finished this month. . .

Angus farmers get lesson from NZ – Tim Cronshaw:

Scottish angus breeder James Playfair-Hannay would like to take New Zealand bloodlines back with him to the home of the breed, after judging the angus fields in the cattle ring at the Canterbury A&P Show.

However, the high praise from the owner of Tofts Pedigree Livestock in Kelso does not extend to every angus entry.

“There are some wonderful functional animals which look to be pretty proficient, and we could use the genetics back home. Then there are some other animals that are not what we are looking for.

“We are looking to produce a 300 to 350-kilogram carcass off grass at 18 months, or earlier if we can.” . . .


Friday’s answers

November 29, 2013

As you read this I’m having lunch with the Prime Minister – just the two of us and a hundredish others.

 Andrei and Gravedodger provided the questions and  as I write this no-one has got all the answers.

An electronic batch of shortbread is theirs if either or both of them managed to stump us all.

It can be collected by leaving the answers here.


Changes in household spending over 40 years

November 29, 2013

The three-year Household Economic Survey (HES) released by Statistics NZ shows incomes increased a bit more than expenditure.

. . . Results from the latest three-yearly Household Economic Survey (HES) show that average weekly household expenditure  increased 9.1 percent, to $1,111, between 30 June 2010 and 30 June 2013. 

Over this three-year period, there was an 11.5 percent rise in average annual household income, up from $76,733 to reach $85,588 in 2013.

“Both income and spending have risen over the last three years, and Kiwi households continue to spend most on food, and housing and household utilities,” standard of living acting manager Ian McGregor said.

The results released today show that average weekly household expenditure on:

  • transport rose – from $131 to $158, with higher spending on petrol 
  • housing and household utilities rose – from $252 to $273, including an increase in spending on rates 
  • food rose – from $178 to $193, including more spending on fruit and vegetables.

This is the 40th year of the HES. Collection began in 1973, and since then the HES has been measuring how the spending habits of New Zealanders have shifted.

Stats NZ has analysed changes in spending between 1973 and 2013.

On average, Kiwi households spend over twice as much of their total expenditure on rent now, compared with 40 years ago, according to the latest Household Economic Survey (HES).
In 1974, on average, 3.3 percent of a household’s total expenditure was spent on rent, compared with 8.6 percent in 2013.

Back then, on average we spent over three times as much of our total expenditure on clothing and footwear as we do today, according to HES.
Our households spent an average 9 percent of their total expenditure on clothing and footwear in 1974, compared with 2.8 percent in 2013, according to the latest results.

Can we credit the removal of tariffs for this?

And 40 years ago, our households spent, on average, almost a third more of their total expenditure on fruit and vegetables, and over twice as much on meat, fish, and poultry compared with today.
Kiwi households are spending almost the same proportion of our total expenditure on food now (17.3 percent) as 40 years ago (17.6 percent), according to HES results. However, on average, 2.9 percent of a household’s total spending was on fruit and vegetables in 1974, compared with 2 percent in 2013. Additionally, 5.5 percent of a household’s total spending was on meat, fish, and poultry in 1974, compared with 2.5 percent in 2013.

Spending less on food now? That’s contrary to the perception .

Food costs more but it takes less of our total income to buy it .

We’ve also got a much greater variety of food available now than there was in the 1970s.

I don’t remember eating pizza until 1975 – and then it was scone dough topped with tinned spaghetti and grated cheese. Yuk!

Households spent over twice as much of their total expenditure on cigarettes and tobacco 40 years ago as we do today, according to 2013 HES results. The proportion we spend on alcohol has also decreased, by a fifth since the 1970s.
In 1974, on average, our Kiwi households were spending 1.6 percent of total expenditure on cigarettes and tobacco, compared with 0.7 percent in 2013. Similarly, we see a fall from spending 2.4 percent of total expenditure on alcohol in 1974, compared with 1.9 percent in 2013.

This is in spite of increased taxes. I suspect fewer people are smoking but are we drinking less or is alcohol less expensive now?

Whatever the answer to that question, someone’s still smoking all my tobacco and drinking most of my alcohol.

40years-hes-infographic-jpg


NZ First needs a headline

November 29, 2013

Colin Craig is a younger, fresher option for people who might have been attracted to Winston Peters.

Craig’s Conservative Party has been getting headlines and that’s bestirred a New Zealand First MP to go in search of one too.

He found it in NZ First will stop farm sales to foreigners:

. . . New Zealand First is calling for a complete halt to sales of farmland to non resident foreign buyers, its primary industries spokesman Richard Prosser says.

“Under a New Zealand First-influenced government there will be no more sales of farmland to non resident foreigners, full stop.

“This road leads to peasantry and New Zealanders being tenants in our own country,” Prosser said.

Not surprisingly the rhetoric isn’t supported by the facts:

Though there is no formal record of how much land is owned by offshore investors Overseas Investment Office land information manager Annelies McClure said “Current best estimates are that between 1% and 2% of New Zealand farmland is held by overseas interests.”

That figure excludes forestry and land, such as areas of native bush, not in productive use. . .

Prosser’s rant has been prompted by plans for Synlait Milk to sell to the Pengxin Group.

He doesn’t factor in the foreign exchange this will bring into the country and what those who sell their shares might do with the money they’ll get for them.

But then that wouldn’t get the attention-grabbing negative headline he wanted.

It might not do him and his party any good though because the Conservatives are not keen on foreign ownership either.


Yealands SI Farmer of Year

November 29, 2013

Marlborough entrepreneur and winemaker Peter Yealands has won the prestigious Lincoln University Foundation South Island Farmer of the Year award for 2013.

The finals were held at Lincoln University with Chief Judge Nicky Hyslop saying the Yealands entry stood out for its innovation, entrepreneurship and vision.

The winner’s prize is a $20,000 grant toward overseas travel for study, research, marketing, or a combination of these.

The Yealands entry, one of six finalists from throughout the South Island, also won the Silver Fern Farms ‘Plate to Pasture’ award for consumer awareness, and the Lincoln University award for best use of technology and innovation, receiving $5000 for each.

“Peter impressed us with his philosophy of ‘think boldly and never say it can’t be done’,” Hyslop says. “He also demonstrated outstanding innovation inside and outside of the winery business. That was backed up by sound business practices integrated into every aspect of the operation, and a holistic ‘vine to bottle’ approach. Peter showed he was a visionary and had the will and the tenacity to convert that into a successful farm business enterprise.”

Andrew, Karen and Sam Simpson from Lake Tekapo were runners up with their high country merino sheep station, Balmoral, that has diversified into forestry, deer, cropping, property development, conservation recreation, value-added processing of their wool and meat. Hyslop says this entry was also notable for its vision and entrepreneurship, the extensive skill set within the family operation, its business and governance structures, and international networking.

The BNZ award for best human resource management, and the award for resource use efficiency were both taken out by North Canterbury dairy farmers Alan and Sharron Davie-Martin, winning $5000 for each.

“We had an outstanding group of finalists this year, all of a very high calibre,” says Lincoln University Foundation Chair Ben Todhunter. “They each in their way represented some of the best examples of the high performing, innovative, leading edge farming that is coming out of the South Island. This very high standard of entry represents not only a strong future for this competition, but for New Zealand, as we seek to encourage, promote and reward farming excellence.”

The six finalists were:

Neil and Philippa Gardyne from Otama, near Gore, who operate a sheep, beef and cropping enterprise. They are passionate about the sheep and beef industry and focus on innovative, efficient systems.

Trevor and Karen Peters from Roxburgh operate a large scale sheep and beef hill country enterprise built on strong succession planning and a real passion for farming, with low cost development contributing to outstanding farm management.

Andrew, Karen and Sam Simpson from Lake Tekapo run a high country Merino sheep station with diversification in forestry, deer, cropping, property development, conservation recreation, wool on-processing, and meat on-processing. Other commercial activities include a helicopter pad and golf course.

Alan and Sharron Davie-Martin from Culverden operate a highly productive dairy farming operation and continually explore technology to improve systems and production in all aspects of their business.

Simon and Pip Todhunter from Blenheim intensively farm Marlborough East Coast hill country with developed and native tussock hills, carrying ewes, cows and trading cattle. They continually explore technology to improve systems and production in all aspects of their business.

Peter Yealands from Seddon operates a large viticulture business, focused on innovation and business excellence. The business is hugely integrated with outstanding environmental balance.


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