Word of the day

May 25, 2013

Filipendulous –  hanging or suspended by or strung upon a thread.


Rural round-up

May 25, 2013

What Fonterra’s CEO tells the Dutch – David Williams:

When he was playing rugby at university, Theo Spierings’ 1.96m frame was an advantage.

The Dutchman probably doesn’t think about it much now, as he leans more towards sailing than rugby, and is kept busy running New Zealand’s biggest company, Fonterra.

But for media, Mr Spierings’ height is crucial: it makes him easy to spy across a room where, literally, he can be (shaved) head and shoulders above the rest. . .

Drought blamed for export drop – James Weir:

The summer drought took a bite out of dairy and meat export volumes in April although higher commodity prices helped the dairy values hold almost steady for the month.

Seasonally adjusted figures showed total exports fell almost 9 per cent in April, compared with March, as meat, logs, timber and oil exports dropped in the month.

While exports were down, imports were also stronger than expected, leading to a much smaller than expected trade surplus of $157m in April.

The trade balance is expected to get worse in coming months because of the lingering effect of the summer drought on dairy and meat exports. . .

Kiwifruit Post Harvest Operators Join Forces in Support of Zespri Structure:

As a group of post harvest operators in the New Zealand kiwifruit industry, we represent approximately 76 percent of the total volume of kiwifruit exports.
Whilst we are quite diverse in our ownership structures, as a group we represent the largest capital investment in the New Zealand kiwifruit industry, with more than $450 million in investments in orchards, packing facilities and related assets.  At the peak of the kiwifruit season, we employ more than 8,500 people in our post harvest facilities and return approximately $100 million through wages and salaries to the communities in which we operate. . .

Tomatoes New Zealand Encouraged By Minister Kaye’s Move On Irradiated Produce:

Tomatoes New Zealand says the decision not to enforce compulsory individual labelling of irradiated Australian tomatoes and capsicums is disappointing, but the industry organisation believes their concerns have been heard.

In a letter to Tomatoes New Zealand received this week, the Minister for Food Safety Nikki Kaye said she understood Tomatoes New Zealand’s concerns with ensuring irradiated produce was clearly labelled and wanted to work with the organisation to ensure labelling requirements are enforced.

Alasdair MacLeod, Chair of Tomatoes New Zealand, says; “We called for Minister Kaye to put in place tougher labelling requirements for irradiated tomatoes. . .

Cowbassadors take Wellington by storm:

Finalists from the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards (NZDIA) are taking central Wellington by storm, fundraising for Ronald McDonald House Wellington. Farmers are on the streets in force ahead of the NZDIA finals tonight under Master of Ceremonies, TV3 News’ Mike McRoberts.

“I guess these cow balloons raise dairying to new heights,” quipped Willy Leferink, Federated Farmers Dairy Chairperson.

“There are dairy farmers in central Wellington right now ahead of tonight’s New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards. Being part of the community, they are selling the balloons and doing other tasks to raise money for Ronald McDonald House Wellington. . .

And from Introverts are Awesome:


Diane Coleman – Enterprising Rural Women award winner

May 25, 2013

The Supreme Winner of the RWNZ Enterprising Rural Women Award 2013 is Diane Coleman of Treeline Native Nursery, based at Ngongotaha, near Rotorua.

She also won the Love of the Land category.

Treeline Native Nursery, which Diane started 17 years ago, grows and supplies NZ native trees, shrubs and grasses for revegetation and ornamental purposes, growing 300,000 plants a year that are sold to councils, farmers, landscapers, developers and the home gardener.

Rural Women NZ national president, Liz Evans, said Diane Coleman was chosen as the Supreme Winner out of a strong field of contenders, saying she displayed “skill, calm confidence in the progress of her business and a clear awareness of her market.”

“When demand for products slowed with the 2010 economic downturn, Diane adapted to conditions, made some innovative decisions and was able to maintain production levels.

“Added to this, the business is rural-based, employs several rural women and gives back to the community with fund-raising support.”

Other winners on the night were Jan Harper, of Bluespur Butchery in Lawrence, who won the Telecom-sponsored Help! I Need Somebody category.

As one of New Zealand’s first female butchers, Jan, who’s been in the industry since 1977, said it was a ‘dream come true’ when she opened her own business, Bluespur Butchery, in 2009. As well as selling meat to the public, a big part of the business is processing for farmers and hunters.

A very successful exporter of animal by-products from Waipukurau took away the Making it in Rural category, sponsored by Fly Buys Ltd. Angela Payne runs Agri-lab Co-Products Ltd (www.agri-lab.com). Utilising animal parts that previously may have ended up in the offal-pit, the company specialises in placenta, glands, membranes, tendons and glandulars, with 90 percent of the product exported. This is shipped all over the world as raw products for the pharmaceutical and dietary supplements markets.

Kylie Stewart of Rangitikei Farmstay was announced as the winner of the Stay, Play, Rural Award, sponsored by Access Homehealth Ltd. Her 1500 acre farm has been in the family since 1901 and Kylie has breathed new life into many of the old buildings to create attractive accommodation for up to 19 guests at a time who come from all over the world to get a taste of New Zealand rural life with farm tours, horse treks, clay bird shooting and shearing and mustering demonstrations on offer. (www.rangitikeifarmstay.co.nz).

The judging panel also decided this year to give a special Rural Women NZ Encourgement Award. This went to Lee Lamb, a young farming woman who lives in Waikaia, Southland.

As her children grew, and unable to find New Zealand farm-themed books to read to them, Lee decided to write and illustrate her own. A self-taught writer and painter, Lee was also determined to have her books printed in New Zealand. She now has four titles: On the Farm Shearing, On the Farm Autumn Muster, On the Farm Milking Time and On the Farm Harvest.

In congratulating all the winners, Liz Evans said, “Running a successful business anywhere in today’s competitive economy is not easy. It takes time, commitment, money and a passion to succeed. And, of course, you have to have the initial idea to get started.

“And, in the rural context, the start-up and ability to keep going can produce even more challenges. The logistics of running a business away from a centralised urban area can throw up hurdles such as access to prompt transport and communication – not to mention extra costs of freight and postage. All our winners have jumped those hurdles.” . . .

This is the fifth year RWNZ has run the awards.

They are a wonderful way to showcase rural businesswomen and the variety of enterprises in which they’re involved.


Saturday’s smiles

May 25, 2013

A woman as just about to drive away from a riverside car park when a Fish and Game warden approached.

He noticed fish in a tub in the back of her ute and asked to see her fishing licence.

She said she didn’t need one because the fish were pets and she’d just been taking them for a swim.

The warden looked at her and said, “you’re joking.”

“No,” she said, “I’m not and I”ll prove it. I’ll take the fish down to the river, let them go and call them back.”

The warden looked sceptical but was prepared to give her the benefit of the doubt.”

The woman picked up the tub, took it down to the river and tipped it upside down.

The warden waited a few minutes then said, “When are you going to call the fish back.”

She turned to him with a puzzled look and said, “What fish?”


Leading by example

May 25, 2013

Dunedin City Council chief executive has turned down a 10% pay rise.

Dunedin City Council chief executive Paul Orders has turned down a $35,000-a-year pay rise, saying the increase cannot be justified when the organisation is in savings mode. . .

The decision came after the council’s performance appraisal committee – headed by Mayor Dave Cull – concluded Mr Orders’ $350,000-a-year salary was 10% below that of others in his role. . .

”Mr Orders has advised he would find it very difficult to reconcile a salary increase with the ongoing push for the DCC to identify economies and do more with less,” Mr Cull said.

Mr Orders was recruited from Wales and, since arriving in Dunedin in September 2011, has delivered savings from within the organisation that helped ease the council’s debt burden and reduce rates pressure.

He has taken a strict line on any budget increases, while pruning $5.6 million from spending – and creating $1.4 million of ”headroom” within the trimmed budget – ahead of council annual plan meetings earlier this year. . .

Local government, in general, has been much slower than central government to understand the necessity for cutting costs.

The DCC chief understands what needs to be done and is leading by example.

 

 

 


Green hypocrisy

May 25, 2013

State Owned Minister Tony Ryall has correctly applied the H word to the Green Party:

The Government says it’s hypocritical of the Green Party to criticise the number of ‘mum and dad’ Mighty River Power investors, when they were responsible for “frightening them off”.

State-Owned Enterprises Minister Tony Ryall is defending using ‘mum and dad investors’ in the Government’s sales pitch of the shares, despite Greens co-leader Russel Norman calling it a “con”. . .

. . . Mr Ryall responded to those claims this afternoon, saying there was a huge turnout of first time investors, or ‘mum and dads’, despite a plan by the Greens and Labour to “sabotage” it.

He says there were 77,000 first-time investors and more than 101,000 people invested less than $15,000 in the company.

“The Green Party are being hypocritical, saying not enough everyday New Zealanders bought shares, while at the same time they are doing their level best to frighten them off.” . . .

“Over 76,000 people invested less than $5,000 on Mighty River shares and they got everything they asked for,” says Mr Ryall.

“That is a huge achievement despite the economic sabotage of the Green Party and Labour during the float.”

Mr Ryall says investors who were not ‘mum and dads’ had their shares reduced due to demand.

I know several people who were planning to dip their toes into the share market by buying Mighty river Power shares who got cold feet after the LabourGreen power play.
It is indeed hypocritical for Norman to complain that not enough everyday New Zealanders bought shares when their quest for publicity and economic ignorance caused some of those who would have bought to change their minds.

Saturday soapbox

May 25, 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.
Truth, via @[465298390168505:274:Science Is Awesome]


May 25 in history

May 25, 2013

567 BC – Servius Tullius, king of Rome, celebrated a triumph for his victory over the Etruscans.

240 BC – First recorded perihelion passage of Halley’s Comet.

1085 Alfonso VI of Castile took Toledo, Spain back from the Moors.

1420  Henry the Navigator was appointed governor of the Order of Christ.

1521  The Diet of Worms ended when Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, issues the Edict of Worms, declaring Martin Luther an outlaw.

1659  Richard Cromwell resigned as Lord Protector of England following the restoration of the Long Parliament, beginning a second brief period of the republican government called the Commonwealth of England.

1738  A treaty between Pennsylvania and Maryland ended the Conojocular War with settlement of a boundary dispute and exchange of prisoners.

1787 In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, delegates convened a Constitutional Convention to write a new Constitution for the United States. George Washington presided.

1803 Ralph Waldo Emerson, American essayist and philosopher, was born (d. 1882).

1809 Chuquisaca Revolution: a group of patriots in Chuquisaca (modern day Sucre) revolted against the Spanish Empire, starting the South American Wars of Independence.

1810 May Revolution: citizens of Buenos Aires expelled Viceroy Baltasar Hidalgo de Cisneros during the May week, starting the Argentine War of Independence.

1837  The Patriots of Lower Canada (Quebec) rebelled against the British.

1861 – The first edition of The Press went to press.

1865  In Mobile, Alabama, 300 were killed when an ordnance depot exploded.

1878 Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, American entertainer, was born (d. 1949).

1878  Gilbert and Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore opened at the Opera Comique in London.

1892 Josip Broz Tito, Yugoslav resistance leader and later president, was born (d. 1980).

1895  Playwright, poet, and novelist Oscar Wilde was convicted of “committing acts of gross indecency with other male persons” and sentenced to serve two years in prison.

1895  The Republic of Formosa was formed, with Tang Ching-sung as the president.

1913  Richard Dimbleby, British journalist and broadcaster, was born (d. 1965).

1914  The United Kingdom’s House of Commons passed the Home Rule Act for devolution in Ireland.

1921 Hal David, American lyricist and songwriter, was born (d. 2012).

1925  John T. Scopes was indicted for teaching Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.

1926 Sholom Schwartzbard assassinated  Symon Petliura, the head of the Paris-based government-in-exile of Ukrainian People’s Republic.

1927 Robert Ludlum, American writer was born (d. 2001).

1933 Basdeo Panday, 5th Prime Minister of Trinidad & Tobago, was born.

1935  Jesse Owens broke five world records and ties a sixth at the Big Ten Conference Track and Field Championships in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

1936 Tom T. Hall, American singer and songwriter, was born.

1936  The Remington Rand strike, led by the American Federation of Labor, begins.

1938 Raymond Carver, American writer, was born  (d. 1988).

1938 Spanish Civil War: The bombing of Alicante caused 313 deaths.

1939 Ian McKellen, English actor, was born.

1940  World War II: The Battle of Dunkirk began.

1946  The parliament of Transjordan made Abdullah I of Jordan their king.

1953  At the Nevada Test Site, the United States conducted its first and only nuclear artillery test.

1953 The first public television station in the United States officially began broadcasting as KUHT from the campus of the University of Houston.

1955 A night time F5 tornado struck f Udall, Kansas, killing 80 and injuring 273.

1955  First ascent of Kangchenjunga (8,586 m.), the third highest mountain in the world, by a British expedition.

1959 Julian Clary, British television personality, was born.

1961 Apollo program: John F. Kennedy announced before a special joint session of Congress his goal to initiate a project to put a “man on the moon” before the end of the decade.

1962  The Old Bay Line, the last overnight steamboat service in the United States, went out of business.

1963 In Addis Ababa, the Organisation of African Unity was established.

1966  Explorer 32 launched.

1966 The first prominent DaZiBao during the Cultural Revolution in China was posted at Peking University.

1967  Celtic Football Club became the first Scottish, British and northern European team to win the European Cup, beating Inter 2–1 in the Estádio Nacional, in Lisbon.

1968 – Three people died in the Inangahua earthquake.

1978 Bastion Point protestors were evicted.

Bastion Point protestors evicted

1979  American Airlines Flight 191: A McDonnell Douglas DC-10 crashed during takeoff at O’Hare International Airport killing 271 on board and two people on the ground.

1979  Six-year-old Etan Patz disappeared from the street just two blocks away from his New York home, prompting an International search for the child, and causing President Ronald Reagan to designate May 25th as National Missing Children’s Day (in 1983).

1981  In Riyadh, the Gulf Cooperation Council was created between Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

1982  HMS Coventry  was sunk during the Falklands War.

1985 Bangladesh was hit by a tropical cyclone and storm surge, which killed approximately 10,000 people.

1997  A military coup in Sierra Leone replaced President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah with Major Johnny Paul Koromah.

1999 The United States House of Representatives released the Cox Report which detailed China‘s nuclear espionage against the U.S. over the prior two decades.

2000  Liberation Day of Lebanon. Israel withdrew its army from most of the Lebanese territory after 22 years of its first invasion in 1978.

2001  Erik Weihenmayer  became the first blind person to reach the summit of Mount Everest.

2002  China Airlines Flight 611: A Boeing 747-200 broke apart in mid-air and plunged into the Taiwan Strait killing 225 people.

2002  A train crash in Tenga, Mozambique killed 197 people.

2009  North Korea allegedly tested its second nuclear device.

2011 – Oprah Winfrey  ended her twenty five year run of The Oprah Winfrey Show.

2012 – The Dragon spacecraft became the first commercial spacecraft to successfully rendezvous with the International Space Station (ISS).

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.


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