Good Environmental Management No Add-On, Say Farming Ambassadors:
“Sustainability must be built into everyday farming, not bolted on”, was one of the key messages delivered to agribusiness and industry leaders by Canterbury farming ambassadors Roz and Craige Mackenzie.
National Winners of the 2013 Ballance Farm Environment Awards, the Mackenzies recently met with key industry stakeholders to promote good environmental practices and swap ideas on how to improve environmental management.
The five-day trip in November was organised by the New Zealand Farm Environment (NZFE) Trust and included an address to the Primary Production Select Committee.
The Mackenzies also met with sponsors of the Ballance Farm Environment Awards and were impressed with how these organisations had taken the sustainability message to heart. . .
Equity partnership options to buy into a farm:
Equity partnerships offer an opportunity for young farmers and smaller investors to take part in the rise in farm values driven by high dairy payouts and continuing confidence in the long-term future of agriculture, says Justin Geddes, Crowe Horwath’s Dunedin-based Principal.
“Equity partnerships are a great vehicle to grow your own wealth for both farmers and investors,” said Mr Geddes.
The capital cost of running an economic farm unit runs to several million dollars, and one of the pressing issues facing the rural sector is how to get young farmers into farm ownership. . .
Fonterra Australia finalises purchase of Tamar Valley Dairy assets:
Fonterra Australia today finalised the purchase of the assets of Tasmanian yoghurt business, Tamar Valley Dairy. The Tamar Valley Dairy business is now under full Fonterra ownership and management.
Under the terms of the sale, Fonterra has acquired the processing equipment, the related services, and intellectual property and trademark for the Tamar Valley Dairy brand. Fonterra worked closely with Deloitte Restructuring Services to achieve the completed sale.
Importantly, 122 positions of the Tamar Valley Dairy workforce will now transition to Fonterra to ensure the right skill-set and expertise are available to ensure continuity of operations and the long-term sustainability of the business. Regrettably, 18 roles are not required and have been made redundant by the Administrator. . .
Fonterra Wins National Accounting Award:
Two of Fonterra’s senior finance managers picked up the 2013 Innovation of the Year Award at last night’s New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants Awards in Auckland.
Patrice Wynen, Director, Finance Delivery Centre, and Ken Stephens, General Manager Reporting Services, were recognised for a new month-end financial acceleration projects that reduced Fonterra’s group reporting time by 50 per cent.
Through the project, Fonterra’s group month-end financial close was reduced from six days down to just three. The reduction was achieved in less than eight months and without any form of technology change. . . .
Comvita posts 1H loss of $790k on margin squeeze - Paul McBeth:
Comvita, which makes health products from Manuka honey, reported a first-half small loss as its margins were squeezed by expensive honey and as trading conditions in Australia and the UK were stretched by stiff competition.
The Te Puke-based company made a loss of $790,000, or 2.7 cents per share, in the six months ended Sept. 30, from a profit of $2.39 million, or 7.95 cents, a year earlier, it said in a statement. Sales fell 4.6 percent to $43.4 million.
That was in line with guidance last month, and Comvita affirmed its annual forecast to beat last year’s profit of $7.4 million and sales of $103.5 million, with about 60 percent of revenue expected to come in the second half. . .
ANZ Young Farmer Contest sets sights on Taupo:
The ANZ Young Farmer Contest is pleased to announce the 2015 Grand Final events will be held in Taupo.
The decision comes after a unanimous vote by the ANZ Young Farmer Contest Management Committee.
The ANZ Young Farmer Contest alternates between the North Island and the South Island each year. This year it was held in Auckland and the upcoming 2014 Grand Final will be in Christchurch, 3-5 July.
“After three Grand Finals based in larger metropolitan areas, I think the 2015 ANZ Young Farmer Contest Grand Final hosted in an increasingly agricultural area will go down as one of the most exciting and well-run events in the history of New Zealand Young Farmers,” said Terry Copeland, New Zealand Young Farmers CEO. . .
Trust announces Christmas present for the New Zealand wine industry:
Directors of Wine Competition Ltd, the company that owns and organises the Spiegelau International Wine Competition and Marlborough Wine Show, have established a Trust to fund initiatives designed to enhance the success of the New Zealand wine industry.
Margaret Cresswell and Belinda Jackson established Wine Competition Ltd in 2011as an independent company that owns and organises wine competitions and associated events in New Zealand. Knowing that there were a significant number of unopened bottles following the judging process, the pair decided to establish a Trust to which these bottles were donated. The Trust then auctions the wine with the objective of returning the ensuing funds to the industry.
Trustee, Belinda Jackson explains, “Producers pay to submit their wines for the judging process and send us samples. Though we request the least number possible – just three bottles, we feel strongly that those not used should be returned to the industry somehow.” She continues, “The easiest way is to monetise them and then offer that money back in the form of funding for industry grants and scholarships.” . . .
Queenstown trophy station on market - Chris Hutching:
Sothebys in Queenstown is marketing Homestead Bay overlooking Lake Wakatipu on Remarkables Station next to Jack’s Point golf resort.
The trophy property has been owned by three generations of the Jardine family after being founded in 1861 by Queenstown’s first European settler William Rees. The 45ha site comes with development potential for a resort village plus 27 less intensive building sites.
The station is a working farm that descends down terraces to the lake. . . .
Exporting New Zealand forward:
Federated Farmers is buoyed by surging primary exports that has turned in the lowest trade deficit for an October month since the mid-1990s.
“These export trade figures when coupled with the New Zealand Institute for Economic Research’s outlook for 2014 tells me we are turning the corner,” says Bruce Wills, Federated Farmers President.
“The primary industries have got our collective foot to the floor and in the month of October by value alone, dairy exports surged an incredible 84.7 percent, followed by logs (26.2 percent), red meat (9.4 percent), fish (5.7 percent) and wine (3.2 percent).
“Of our big six primary exports fruit admittedly did go backwards but the trend overall is positive. . .
NZ winery first in southern hemisphere to trade with bitcoin:
A small high-end winery in North Canterbury is set to become the first wine business in the southern hemisphere to accept bitcoin payment to make transactions easier for its strong domestic and international customer base.
Pyramid Valley Vineyards, Waikairi, produces collectable wines in New Zealand and sees the new currency as a development in line with its innovative approach to business.
“It’s exciting times we live in and bitcoin is a movement that is gaining huge international traction as a currency that is borderless,” says Caine Thompson, managing director of Pyramid Valley. “We’re increasingly getting requests from our international customers to be able to pay with bitcoin, particularly for our exclusive Home Collection wines. They don’t want to be worried about exchange rates and costly transaction fees.” . . .
Record year as NZ Racing Board continues transformation:
At the NZ Racing Board AGM, held at the Head Office in Wellington today, the NZ Racing Board reflected on a record-breaking financial year and outlined its ambitious vision and goals for the future.
Financial achievements in 2013 included a record turnover of $1,956.8m, and record distributions of $147.7m to the racing industry and sporting organisations.
Speaking at the AGM, NZ Racing Board Chair Glenda Hughes said the organisation and the industry still faced significant challenges, and ongoing transformation and a collaborative approach is key to further, sustained success for an industry that contributes almost 1% of GDP. . .