Tim Van de Molen wins Young Farmer contest

May 19, 2013

Tim Van de Molen of the Waikato/Bay of Plenty Region is the 2013 ANZ Young Farmer Contest Champion.

“It’s an absolute honour and a privilege”, said Mr Van de Molen following the evening show at TVNZ Studios in Auckland.

The ANZ agri-manager and farm owner from Hamilton was runner up in the 2011 Grand Final. “I’m just delighted with the outcome, it is been a long road to get here”, said Mr Van de Molen.

Mr Van de Molen was not the only winner on stage tonight.

The youngest competitor, Matthew Bell of Aorangi, took out the Ravensdown Agri-skills Challenge and is the proud owner of $14,000 worth of Ravensdown and C-Dax products and services. Taranaki/Manawatu’s Cam Brown triumphed in the AGMARDT Agri-business Challenge and won a $15,000 AGMARDT Scholarship towards a career development programme. Reuben Carter from Tasman dominated the Silver Fern Farms Agri-sport Challenge winning a Silver Fern Farms and FarmIQ farmer technology package worth $5,000. And, the Champion, Mr Van de Molen, also took out the Lincoln University Agri-growth Challenge and received $9,500 towards an industry related conference package. . . .

It’s a sign of the times that the contest doesn’t get the publicity in general media that it used to.

But the contest, and the title, are still highly regarded in rural circles where the winner will get the respect he’s earned.


Word of the day

May 19, 2013

Supposititious– substituted for the real thing; not genuine; falsely presented as a genuine heir; illegitimate; substituted with fraudulent intent; spurious; hypothetical; supposed; imaginary.


Rural round-up

May 19, 2013

Gisborne throws support behind MIE – Anne Calcinai:

The Meat Industry Excellence (MIE) group departed Gisborne this week with overwhelming support for change.

More than 150 farmers attended the meeting on Wednesday and became the fourth group to support the MIE group.

Farmers in Gisborne voted unanimously to support a mandate for change, based on the six principles outlined by MIE.

MIE executive chairman Richard Young said it was clear from the meeting farmers understood they needed to change their behaviour and that commitment to meat companies on a longer-term basis was essential. . .

Kahungunu takes giant step into farming:

 Chairman Ngahiwi Tomoana says, “Ngāti Kahungunu have taken the first step to diversify its interests from Fisheries to Farming.”

 The Kahungunu Asset Holding Company on behalf of its shareholder Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Incorporated has completed a Sale and Purchase Agreement for the Tautane Station, owned by the Herrick family for over 120 years. The iwi is pleased to have been the successful bidder of this historic farm located south of Porangahau.

It is the first major real estate investment that the iwi has made and is a template for further land acquisitions. This is part of the iwi’s ‘gate to plate’ strategy to build on relationshps in the high end growing Asian market that’s demanding high quality food product direct from the producer to the supplier. Over two years the iwi has investigated orchards, dairy farms and other commercial properties, but Tautane meets all the iwi’s economic indicators covering environmental, social, educational, historical and cultural objectives. . .

Steak of Origin champions do it again:

Chris and Karren Biddles from Northland have been named Grand Champions in the 2013 Beef + Lamb New Zealand Steak of Origin competition.

After winning in 2007 and taking the Producer of the Decade title in 2012, the Te Kopuru couple have now taken out the 2013 grand prize with their Angus/Jersey beef sirloin entry.

The competition to find the country’s most tender and tasty steak, sponsored by Zoetis, culminated in the Grand Final at the Beef Expo in Feilding last night.

The 20 finalists were tasted by a panel of judges, comprising three leading chefs. Head judge and chef Graham Hawkes says the quality of the steak on show was exceptional. . .

New hope for new farmers:

FARMERS WHO have joined the Scottish industry in the 10 years since subsidy entitlements were set in historical stone can now claim a share of £2 million worth of extra funding from the Scottish Goverment.

Rural Affairs CabSec Richard Lochhead said this week: “It is crucial that we do all we can to help introduce new entrants to farming – they are fresh blood to the rural economy.”

But new entrants themselves, at risk of seeming ungrateful, pointed out that £2m, shared between the 1000-plus Scottish farmers currently excluded from the historical subsidy system, paled into insignificance next to the average SFP payment their neighbours received annually. . .

Dairy Boards don’t have standing to challenge pizza kits

Canada’s watchdog on cross-border trade says it can’t rule on a company importing pizza topping kits made with cheaper U.S. mozzarella, if the request for a ruling doesn’t come from another importer.

Canada’s 10 provincial dairy marketing boards, under the not-for-profit name BalanceCo, had sought a ruling from the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) during a appeal hearing last month in Ottawa, against imports of pre-packaged pizza toppings combining shredded mozzarella and sliced pepperoni from the U.S.

The packs were recently developed for import into Canada from the U.S. by J. Cheese Inc., an Ontario distributor, for a “particular customer” — namely the Toronto-based Pizza Pizza chain, which operates almost 700 Pizza Pizza and Pizza 73 outlets across Canada.

The packs are now classified for tariff purposes as a “food preparation” and thus aren’t subject to the tariff rate quotas (TRQs) imposed on dairy imports under Canada’s supply-managed dairy marketing system. . .

Canada prepares to target U.S. goods in COOL spat:

Canada will put forward a list of U.S. products it wants to target in retaliation for U.S. country-of-origin meat labels if last-minute changes to U.S. label regulations don’t prove satisfactory, Canadian officials said on Friday.

The dispute stems from a 2009 U.S. requirement that retail outlets put the country of origin on labels on meat and other products, a move the government said was in an effort to give U.S. consumers more information about their food.

Canada and Mexico complained that the mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) rule caused a decline in U.S. imports of their cattle and pigs, and the World Trade Organization has ordered the United States to make changes by May 23. . .

Farmhouse succession – Paul Spackman:

It is a significant and symbolic step in the handing over of responsibility of any family farm business when a son or daughter takes over occupancy of the main farmhouse from their parents.

All too often, however, it is a process that hasn’t been planned well enough and is perhaps done hastily out of necessity, rather than as part of a considered succession plan.

This can strain family relationships and in some cases jeopardise the future viability of the business, especially if non-farming relatives have to be paid off and parts of the farm broken up or sold, says farm consultant Siân Bushell. . .

 

 

 


Last Shepherd

May 19, 2013

Roger Buchanan begins Last Shepherd at the end with a brief summary of the wool industry’s recent history.

He then goes back in time, setting the scene for his life-long interest in wool from his childhood on the family farm, Aratika, 16 kilometres from Fielding. He traverses his school days and career and ends back where he began looking at the industry today and where it might go.

Buchanan began his working life with a wool merchant and tutored at Massey  before his career took him to various statutory organisations. He was the Wool Board’s final chief executive and oversaw its winding down.

The book combines history, analysis, marketing, trade, policy  and politics with  personal anecdotes to give a comprehensive story of the wool industry, the people  involved in it and the challenges they faced.

Not all of the latter were business ones. The book includes tales of travel misadventures, attempted bribery and unusual culinary encounters.

The Last Shepherd will be of most interest to farmers and others who are, or have been, involved in the industry. The politics, marketing, travel and trade tales could appeal to a wider readership.

lstshp

Last Shepherd: Anecdotes and observations from five decades in the wool industry by Roger Buchanan.

Published by Mahico.

Paperback 312 pages, $45.

Links for ebooks at Last Shepherd.


Waiting for signs

May 19, 2013

 

signs

I used to wait for a sign, she said, before I did anything. Then one night I had a dream & an angel in black tights came to me and said, You can start any time now & then I said is this a sign? & the angel started laughing & I work up.

Now I think the whole world is filled with signs but if there’s no laughter I know they’re not for me.

Story People by Brian Andreas

If you click on the link you can sign up for a Story of The Day to bring a little whimsy to your in-box first thing every day.


Fonterra’s price will tempt suppliers to sell

May 19, 2013

Fonterra has announced a final price of $7.92 for shares suppliers sell into the shareholders fund.

The price was calculated by reference to an average of the daily traded price on the NZX for Fonterra Units for each trading day between 2 – 15 May inclusive.

 General Manager – Trading Among Farmers, Aaron Jenkins, said farmer shareholders have a further week to confirm if they wish to participate in the Supply Offer before it closes at 5pm on 23 May. . .
At that price farmers who have more shares than they need will be tempted to sell their excess.
Cashing up surplus shares will be especially tempting for those whose supply and income were hit by drought.

Feds seek foreign land register

May 19, 2013

Federated Farmers wants a foreign land register to provide more information on farms and rural businesses in overseas ownership.

National president Bruce Wills told the Primary Industry Forum his organisation supports foreign investment because the country was built on it and can’t progress without it.

He says the Overseas Investment Act strikes the right balance and Federated Farmers wouldn’t support further controls on foreigners buying farmland.

But he says more information is needed about the amount of land in foreign hands. . .

I don’t think we need any more controls on foreign ownership but it would help the discussion if there was better information on the issue.

We know when foreigners buy land but we don’t always know what happens to it after that.

If a foreign buyer sells to another it will need Overseas Investment Office approval and become public but sales to New Zealanders aren’t always publicised.

Nor do we always know if the foreigners who buy land or businesses are residents about which most people have fewer reservations.

However, a report by the New Zealand Initiative does debunk several myths including:

Myth: Asians are increasing taking over New Zealand.
Fact: It is Australians who have largely been taking over New Zealand. In the year to March 2012, they own 55.8% of foreign investment – up from 31.5% in March 2001. In March 2012, Asian investors owned just 3.1%.

Myth: New Zealanders are becoming tenants in their own country.
Fact: Of the 28.7 million hectares in New Zealand, only one million is owned by foreigners, while the Department of Conservation alone owns eight million.

Myth: Foreign investment is a one-way street with New Zealand an easy target.
Fact: New Zealand has one of the most restrictive regimes in the world and there has been no obvious upward trend since 2000 relative to GDP. New Zealand investment abroad has dropped slightly from just above 13% relative to GDP in 2002-03 to 12% in 2012. This up markedly in dollar terms since the 1990s.

The report is here.

 


Social housing must do better

May 19, 2013

Finance Minister Bill English didn’t mince his words when giving his view on state houses:

. . . Governments had been “grossly irresponsible” over Housing Corporation not knowing much about its houses or the tenants.

He said the nationalised housing industry “is a disgrace”. . .

Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5 billion and it was $5 b being wasted.

“There are going to have to be changes so we can stop wasting it, and we are going to learn a lot from Christchurch.”

Christchurch had “a half-clean sheet” to restart social housing.

“It is actually pretty shocking the wastefulness and politicisation and the crappy conditions that we make vulnerable people live in. So yes, we are pretty motivated about it because of the benefits for the tenants and the economy and for the Government’s books.

“It’s been a revelation to me that we run this huge asset base with all these vulnerable people and Government hasn’t known about its own tenants, it hasn’t known much about its own housing stock, it’s just been grossly irresponsible.

“We want to get Presbyterian Support, Ngai Tahu, Salvation Army, Housing Foundation involved in supplying these houses and put pressure on our own organisation, which has a record of poor performance.” . . .

The usual suspects are labelling this privatisation.

It doesn’t matter what you call it and who owns the houses, they will still be publicly funded and it wouldn’t be difficult for charitable organisations to do better than Housing Corp.


Sunday soapbox

May 19, 2013

Sunday’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.

A cool statement...


May 19 in history

May 19, 2013

1499  Catherine of Aragon, was married by proxy to Arthur Tudor, Prince of Wales. Catherine was 13 and Arthur 12.

1535  Jacques Cartier set sail on his second voyage to North America with three ships, 110 men, and Chief Donnacona’s two sons (whom Cartier had kidnapped during his first voyage).

1536  Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII , was beheaded for adultery, treason, and incest.

1568  Queen Elizabeth I of England ordered the arrest of Mary, Queen of Scots.

1643 Thirty Years’ War : French forces under the duc d’Enghien decisively defeated Spanish forces at the Battle of Rocroi, marking the symbolic end of Spain as a dominant land power.

1649  An Act of Parliament declaring England a Commonwealth was passed by the Long Parliament.

1749 King George II granted the Ohio Company a charter of land around the forks of the Ohio River.

1780 New England’s Dark Day: A combination of thick smoke and heavy cloud cover caused complete darkness to fall on Eastern Canada and the New England area of the United States at 10:30 A.M.

1795 – Johns Hopkins, American philanthropist, was born  (d. 1873).

1802  Napoleon Bonaparte founded the Légion d’Honneur.

1828 President John Quincy Adams signsedthe Tariff of 1828 into law, protecting wool manufacturers in the United States.

1846 Thomas Brunner, Kehu, a Ngati Tumatakokiri Maori, and Charles Heaphy reached Mawhera Pa.

Brunner, Kehu and Heaphy reach Mawhera pa

1848 Mexican-American War: Mexico ratified the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo thus ending the war and ceding California, Nevada, Utah and parts of four other modern-day U.S. states to the United States for $15 million USD.

1861  Dame Nellie Melba, Australian opera singer, was born (d. 1931).

1864 American Civil War: the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House ended.

1879 Nancy Astor, Viscountess Astor, American-born politician, was born (d. 1964).

1881 Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, 1st President of Turkey, was born (d. 1938).

1890 Ho Chi Minh, Vietnamese leader, was born  (d. 1969).

1897  Oscar Wilde was released from Reading Gaol.

1919 Mustafa Kemal Atatürk landed at Samsun on the Anatolian Black Sea coast, initiating the Turkish War of Independence.  The anniversary of this eventis also regarded as a date of remembrance for Pontic Greeks on the Greek genocide.

1921  The U.S. Congress passed the Emergency Quota Act establishing national quotas on immigration.

1922 The Young Pioneer organization of the Soviet Union was established.

1925 Malcolm X, American civil rights activist, was born (d. 1965).

1925   Pol Pot, Cambodian dictator , was born (d. 1998).

1928 Colin Chapman, founder of Lotus Cars, was born (d. 1982).

1939 Nancy Kwan, Hong Kong actress, was born.

1941 Bobby Burgess, dancer, singer and original Mouseketeer, was born.

1943 World War II: British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt set Monday, May 1, 1944 as the date for the cross-English Channel landing (D-Day). It was later be delayed over a month due to bad weather.

1945 Pete Townshend, English musician (The Who), was born.

1948 Grace Jones, Jamaican singer and actress, was born.

1951 Joey Ramone, American musician (The Ramones), was born  (d. 2001).

1953 Victoria Wood, English comedian and actress, was born.

1954 Phil Rudd, Australian drummer (AC/DC), was born.

1961  Venera program: Venera 1 becomes the first man-made object to fly-by another planet by passing Venus (the probe had lost contact with Earth a month earlier and did not send back any data).

1962 A birthday salute to U.S. President John F. Kennedy took place at Madison Square Garden. The highlight is Marilyn Monr0e’s rendition of Happy Birthday.

1966  Jodi Picoult, American writer, was born.

1971   Mars 2 was launched by the Soviet Union.

1983 Jessica Fox, English actress, was born.

1987 The attempted hijacking of an Air New Zealand Boeing 747 at Nadi airport was thwarted when a member of the cabin crew hit the hijacker over the head with a whisky bottle.

Attempted hijacking in Fiji foiled

1991 Croatians voted for independence at their independence referendum.

2009  Sri Lanka announced victory in its 27 year war against the terrorist organisation, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

2010 – The Royal Thai Armed Forces concluded its crackdown on protests by forcing the surrender of United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship leaders.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.


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