October 6, 2013

Just 5/10 in NBR’s Biz Quiz.

Word of the day

October 6, 2013

Thelephobia – fear of nipples.

Hat tip: Brian Edwards.

Rural round-up

October 6, 2013

Moves to keep sheep and beef in the frame – Annette Scott:

One of the most important aspects of the AgResearch Future Footprint (FFP) proposal is the need to ramp up New Zealand efforts to confront new challenges faced by agriculture, Beef + Lamb New Zealand chairman Mike Petersen says.

In his chairman’s update last week Petersen assured farmers B+LNZ was consulting AgResearch over its FFP restructure to ensure the needs of sheep and beef farmers were met.  

“B+LNZ has been working closely with AgResearch to ensure the needs of our sector are not compromised by these plans. . .

Advocate for improved farming – Annette Scott:

Lynda Murchison was born with farming in her blood but she grew up in Christchurch. Now a farmer and environmental planning consultant, she talks to Annette Scott for this first in the series of Women Stepping Up.

Lynda Murchison joined the Federated Farmers executive because she wanted to advocate for improved farming outcomes, in particular around land and water management and red meat and wool opportunities.

She identified a gap, she had the skills and she put her hand up for the challenge. . .

New proposal for screening PKE:

Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy is welcoming a proposal to bring in compulsory screening of palm kernel expeller (PKE) imported into New Zealand.

PKE is imported mainly from Malaysia and Indonesia and is used by the dairy industry as supplementary stock feed.

“The proposal from the Ministry for Primary Industries is that all PKE must be passed through a 4-6mm size screen on entry to New Zealand and before going on sale. There will also be added requirements for record keeping and traceability.

“It’s important to note there are already tough conditions in place for imports, including heat treatment, fumigation and inspection. On top of this new standards were introduced in June ensuring that in-market facilities are Government approved. . .

Chinese charm offence needed – exporter:

HIGH PROFILE media coverage is needed in China to get the message out that infant formula products are safe, says Chris Claridge from the NZ Infant Formula Exporters Association.

The New Zealand Government needs to take the lead and Prime Minister John Key should visit soon, with industry people, he says.

Claridge is highly frustrated that he cannot seem to get his message heard in New Zealand: our products are still at high risk because the Chinese consumer still thinks New Zealand infant formula is poisoned.

Meanwhile New Zealand’s competitors are cashing in. . .

Two more awards for Tru-Test – Hugh Stringleman:

Agri-technology manufacturer and exporter Tru-Test Group has added two prestigious awards to others won earlier this year, along with a major acquisition.

Tru-Test was named supreme winner in the New Zealand International Business Awards after winning the ANZ Best Business operating internationally, more than $50 million category.

Peter Chrisp, chief executive of award manager NZ Trade and Enterprise, said Tru-Test had forged strong relationships with its partners and developed a well-thought-out market entry strategy. . .

Looming large – Mark C O’Flaherty:

Hermès and Chanel have long chosen Scottish over Italian mills. Now a new generation of designers is following suit, inspired as much by technological innovation as matchless quality. Mark C O’Flaherty reports on a Scottish textile renaissance.


The archive library at Johnstons of Elgin in the Scottish Highlands resembles a lavishly produced fantasy film set. There are shelves full of bulging red-leather books with weathered pages, each tome greater in size than the Domesday Book. Collectively, they house the mill’s estate tweeds, each swatch exclusive to a single landowner, and each book marked in gilt across its giant spine with the year of production. The earliest is 1865. In the corner sits a roll of recently woven fabric, an intricately detailed marbled-grey cloth with flecks of red in it. “That’s Albert Tweed,” says James Sugden, a director at the company. “Prince Charles commissioned it from a sample he found in his archive. It was one of the most difficult things we’ve ever worked on. It took months to reproduce and to get precisely the right kind of red, reminiscent of the granite of Aberdeenshire and Balmoral. But that’s why people come to us, because we create things that are too difficult for anyone else to do.” . . .

Stop and pop

October 6, 2013

FMG is reminding farmers to stop and pop to avoid the fire danger from birds nesting in tractors.

Birds nest in sheltered, enclosed spaces, so put them off using your tractor – just Stop & Pop.

STOP and check for nests under the bonnet. Birds can start a nest in the time it takes you to have your lunch break.

POP the bonnet when you park your tractor, to deter nesting. . .

They’ve also got a game to reinforce the message.

If you fancy your chances at shooting crows, click the link which will take you to the game and the chance to win a prize.

General confusion

October 6, 2013
I used to be pretty clear on what was real & what I made up, but with everything going on in the world, none of that seems to matter, so I just decided to talk less & smile to myself more, so as not to add to the general confusion.
From Story People by Brian Andreas.
Clicking on the link will take you to where you can sign up for a daily dose of email whimsy like this.

A big loss is a good deal?

October 6, 2013

Quote of the day:

. . .In terms of repayment, the banks’ “equity” stands somewhere near the contractor who cleans the windows at company headquarters.

If the Green Party really believes that kind of ownership is a kind worth buying, then heaven help the taxpayer when it gets near the purse strings of the Treasury. . . Hamish Rutherford

He was writing about Gareth Hughes’s view that banks taking a huge loss with Solid Energy was somehow privatisation by stealth.

Does he really believe that accepting a big loss in the hope that it will prevent an even bigger one makes it a good deal for the banks?

If so he merely confirms that he and his party don’t understand finance and business.

Change mooted for burial laws

October 6, 2013

The Law Commission is consulting on ideas for changing burial laws.

The terms of reference for the review (which can be found here) are very broad. As well as assessing whether the Act remains fit for purpose,  we have also been asked to consider whether, and to what extent, the law should:

  • protect the diverse cultural and spiritual needs of individuals and groups with respect to burial and cremation;
  • protect land used for human burial, ensuring it is adequately maintained and our cultural heritage preserved;
  • provide better guidance and assistance to the bereaved when decision-making  at the time of death gives rise to serious disagreements; and
  • whether the is a case for stronger consumer protections with respect to the funeral and cremation sector.

Among the issues being considered is allowing people to be buried on family land.

We visited a farm earlier this year with a private cemetery.

The owners had wanted to establish one but were told by lawyers they couldn’t. However, while tidying up the paper work one of the owners happened to read that religions could establish private graveyards.

He did some research, found there was little if any law pertaining to what constituted a religion for this purpose, established one, called it a Christian religion, got the paper work sorted, invited an Anglican bishop to bless the land and that was that.

The family has subsequently built a small chapel beside their cemetery.

There are sensitivities and health considerations around burials and I can see problems if people wanted to start burying bodies on small urban sections.

But I don’t see the need to go through the palaver the people we visited did to establish a graveyard on larger land holdings like farms which are usually passed on through the family.

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