Brabble – quibble; argue stubbornly about trifles or petty things; wrangle; noisy, quarrelsome chatter.
Challenge of creating a strong red meat sector – Allan Barber:
I am obviously not alone in trying to work out ways of creating a strong red meat sector with profits being shared equitably between the participants. But it is an elusive model which nobody has yet succeeded in identifying. It makes me wonder if it is an impossible dream, but there are a number of determined dreamers who are still intent on finding the solution.
Recently I have had an exchange of emails, not always amicable, with John McCarthy, chairman of MIE, who is committed to achieving consensus among farmers about a future industry structure which will get away from the price taker model.
He takes me to task, quite legitimately, for seeing things from the companies’ perspective which, he says, focuses on making a profit for shareholders. But this doesn’t satisfy farmers’ objectives of being sustainably profitable which is the only way a strong red meat sector will emerge. He agrees the top farmers are performing satisfactorily, but in his view these only comprise 20-25% of farmers. . .
Wool industry picks up dropped stitches - Sally Rae:
New Zealand’s wool industry is ”a wee bit broken” , Wools of New Zealand chief executive Ross Townshend says.
At an autumn roadshow in Waikouaiti, Mr Townshend spoke of his observations since starting the job in August last year.
Sixty years ago, 85% of sheep farmers’ revenue was from wool and 15% was from meat, and now it was the complete opposite. . .
Linking youth and the land – Sally Rae:
Annika Korsten is on a mission to expose disengaged Dunedin youth to rural work opportunities.
Ms Korsten, a recipient of a $100,000 World of Difference grant from the Vodafone New Zealand Foundation, is establishing a programme, on behalf of the Malcam Charitable Trust, to develop opportunities for young people aged 18 to 24 to transition to work or further rural training.
Describing herself as passionate about people, place and food and the inter-relationship between the three, she said she enjoyed facilitating networks and connecting people. . .
The costs of GMO labelling -Foodie Farmer:
There has been much discussion over whether or not the labeling of “GMO” foods would add to the cost of food production or not. This was one of the supporting arguments for GMO labeling at the legislative hearing at the Maryland House of Delegates Committee on Health and Government Operations during which Doug Gurian-Sherman of the Union of Concerned Scientists and Michael Hansen of the Center for Food Safety, both insisted that labeling costs would be minor at best.
So does The Grist
What is Your Dairy farm Profit? – Pasture to Profit:
What is dairy farm profit? Is profit a dirty word? Too few New Zealand dairy farmers know their profit? Discussion groups rarely discuss or compare profit. Few farmers financially benchmark. Why do farmers and consultants continue to use profit per hectare to compare farms?
PROFIT = GROSS FARM REVENUE – FARM OPERATING EXPENSES + NON-CASH Adjustments. Non-Cash Adjustments include changes in feed & livestock inventory, inclusion of Family labour & Management and depreciation. See NZDairybase Why do so few NZ dairy farmers know what their profit is? Profit per hectare is not enough, although every farmer should calculate Profit/hectare. . . .
New Zealand’s in the top tier again:
Several trends have emerged following analysis of the 2013 Census online option, Statistics Minister Maurice Williamson says.
Close to two million census forms, or 34 per cent of all forms, were done online, with the response rate peaking at 130,000 forms per hour on census night.
“The average time taken to complete an individual form was 10 minutes and eight minutes for the dwelling form.
“The Auckland and Wellington regions had the highest proportion of individual forms done online. It was also interesting to note the online option was most popular for people who were born overseas, of Asian ethnicity and aged in their thirties,” Mr Williamson says.
Another feature of the 2013 Census was a trial in Oamaru that saw everyone receive internet access codes via mail, with paper forms only delivered on request.
“About 65 per cent of people completed forms online, which was nearly double the national rate. It shows an online delivery and collection method for census can work in New Zealand.
“It also gives Statistics New Zealand a strong base to explore online options for other surveys,” Mr Williamson says.
As more people have reliable internet connections, on-line options should become more popular.
It will be considerably less expensive for Statistics NZ.
However, it might require an opt-in for paper as was used in Oamaru to prompt those less confident, or more reluctant, about using the internet to take the on-line option.
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise is to establish a new regional investment attraction programme to encourage more international firms to invest in New Zealand’s regional economies, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce says.
NZTE will work in partnership with regions around the country to create comprehensive investment profiles that outline the strengths of the particular regional economy, the opportunities for investment, and what the region can offer to investors.
“We know there are big opportunities for New Zealand from the massive growth in the numbers of consumers across Asia. However, companies these days can invest their money wherever they like around the world. The challenge for each of New Zealand’s regions is to showcase the real opportunities for competitive businesses in their region, and this programme will help them do it in a more systematic way,” Mr Joyce says.
The NZTE regional investment attraction programme is part of the agency’s work to mobilise capital from domestic and international sources to help lift exports and grow New Zealand’s economy. This includes the new “Better by Capital” service which helps companies to understand the capital raising process to fund their international growth.
“The regions that are doing the best are those that have a clear positive approach that welcomes investment and new opportunities,” Mr Joyce says.
“The profiles will allow regions to clearly lay out the advantages they offer investors in terms of natural resources, infrastructure, the availability of skilled workers, and innovation hubs that support investment.
“NZTE will also provide a toolkit, training, and assistance for regional economic development agencies to better support investor engagement, guidance, and due-diligence.”
To help create and further develop these investment profiles, the Government is commissioning a number of Regional Growth Studies to evaluate growth opportunities in particular regions. These detailed in-depth reports will identify areas of existing economic strength and where opportunities for further growth lie, with a particular focus on the primary sector.
“In commissioning the Regional Growth Studies, the Government will work alongside regional stakeholders such as regional councils and economic development agencies. Local input into the reports will be vital to ensure they are evidence-based and comprehensive,” Mr Joyce says.
“The first study, for the Gisborne/Hawke’s Bay region, arose out of discussions with Regional Councils last year and is nearly complete. A request for proposals for the Northland study was released yesterday by the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment alongside the Ministry of Primary Industries, and additional studies will be considered in partnership with other regions.
“The latest data shows that it is the regions that have been clearly leading New Zealand’s recovery out of the GFC. Today’s announcements will further accelerate this progress.”
The left demonise foreign investment, but it brings significant benefits:
A $70 million investment in Hawke’s Bay that future-proofs one of the region’s biggest employers was celebrated yesterday.
Japan-owned Pan Pac in Whirinaki, north of Napier, has upgraded its grade of wood-pulp exports thanks to a new $50 million plant that bleaches the product.
A $20 million investment was also made so that treated waste was “better than it has ever been before”, pulp mill manager Roger Jones told dignitaries touring the plant.
Previously, Pan Pac sold only newsprint pulp to its owner Oji Holdings for the Japanese market but now exports two grades of pulp throughout the world, with the US an increasingly important customer.
Pan Pac has the country’s largest Market Mechanical pulp mill and thanks to a recent third shift of workers, now has the country’s most productive sawmill. . .
This investment safeguards jobs, it’s already brought in foreign money and some of the export earnings will remain here for on-ging maintenance and development.
Investors who come from cities whose population is bigger than that of the whole of New Zealand might not be aware of the potential for investment like this outside our main centres.
But lower costs for property and generally stable workforces could make regions attractive to overseas investors.
These factors ought to be considered by domestic investors too when close proximity to a larger market isn’t a consideration.
Sue Bradford and other leading Mana Party figures have walked out of the party’s AGM over its decision to continue negotiations towards an alliance with Kim Dotcom’s Internet Party.
After discussions which went into the night at Mataikotare Marae near Rotorua yesterday, Mana’s branches “unanimously” agreed to move forward with the negotiations.
The party has given its leaders a month to negotiate, before they put any proposed alliance out to the party’s local branches for consultation.
However, Mana President Annette Sykes this morning said : “Our movement, I was concerned that it may be fragile and some of our membership – I don’t know whether some have chosen not to come back today.”
“There’s quite a number. We’re not talking hundreds, but we’re talking people who I think are leaders young and old and they are principled people who I have respect for. They’ve gone back to reflect with their branches.”
Ms Bradford this morning confirmed she was among those who had walked out.
“We left us last night so she perhaps includes us among those people because there was deep debate, deep dissension and resistance to the idea of going into an alliance with the Internet Party.”
“Some of us, both Maori and Pakeha, are really disturbed by the idea of going into an alliance with a neo-liberal billionaire.”. . .
The Internet Party has policies but it’s difficult to detect clear
Th Mana Party has principles and some of its members are principled enough to care enough about them than to be wary of the Dotbomb which could well leave the wreckage of their party in its wake.