Keek – peep surreptitiously; look furtively; a surreptitious or furtive glance.
For reasons those of you who leave reasoned, on-topics comments will understand, this resonated with me:
NZ meat industry tie-up stumbled on differing strategies – Tina Morrison:
(BusinessDesk) – New Zealand meat companies abandoned efforts to consolidate and reduce surplus capacity last year because they lacked an agreed export strategy and farmers wouldn’t commit stock to firms that closed plants, industry sources say.
The country’s four biggest meat processors – farmer owned cooperatives Silver Fern Farms and Alliance Group, accounting for about half the industry, the Talley’s Group family-owned Affco and ANZCO Foods, with a majority ownership held by a Japanese food company – ended talks after failing to reach agreement last year.
A proposal for competitors to share the cost of closing plants was rejected, as was a plan for each company to retain its stock volumes for a period of up to five years following a closure, so they weren’t disadvantaged, according to people involved in the talks, who asked not to be named. . .
No more rules please, say farmers – Diane Bishop:
Education, not regulation, is the key to good environmental outcomes, Southland farmers say.
They want Environment Southland to establish best-practice guidelines around hill and high country development instead of enforcing rules on them.
“I don’t like rules,” Lumsden farmer Willie Menlove said.
“I’ve farmed for more than 20 years without these sorts of rules and I’d prefer education to be the end goal.”
He isn’t alone. . .
– Matt Stewart:
From test-tube meat to 3-D printed pizza, the future of food is a brave new world where science is racing to keep up with a resource that grows ever more expensive and scarce.
As part of Wellington on a Plate, Victoria University tourism management honours students are imagining various scenarios around the future of food festivals and, ultimately, the way we will consume and make food as the planet struggles to feed 10 billion mouths by 2050.
“By 2050 the burger competition at Wellington on a Plate could consist of restaurants who are growing their own hamburgers,” student supervisor and futurist Ian Yeoman said. . .
Quality of river raises passions – Gerard Hutching:
Outside the mercury may be falling, but indoors the atmosphere heats up as a trio of farmers passionately debate the future of dairying in the Tararua district.
It’s a hot topic, with the Horizons Regional Council laying down the gauntlet to land users to clean up their act with its One Plan and the Environment Court setting limits on the amount of nitrogen loss into rivers.
Many found the court’s ruling hard to swallow.
“It would have been catastrophic. Our farms were going to rot from the inside out. The regional council had not done its work properly,” says Dannevirke dairy farmer Will Findlay. . .
This year hasn’t been kind to the US agricultural sector.
Just ask John Deere, the world’s largest manufacturer of farming machinery. The company reported a 15 per cent plunge in profit for its fiscal third quarter compared with the previous quarter on Wednesday. After years of sustained growth, the company has now seen its sales fall in each of the first three fiscal quarters of 2014 and each time significantly.
Tractor sales, which are often used as a barometer of agricultural sector health, have been especially weak in the US. Deere’s equipment sales fell by 6 per cent in the third quarter, and are expected to tumble by another 8 per cent in the fourth quarter. . . .
Solid export value growth and continued demand for New Zealand wine is the summary of the year according to the June year end 2014 Annual Report of New Zealand Winegrowers.
“Wineries took full advantage of the glorious 2013 vintage to bounce back from the supply constraints of 2012. The end result was a 10% increase in both export volume and value as overseas sales earned a record $1.33 billion” said Steve Green, Chair of New Zealand Winegrowers. The highly successful sales year left stocks needing replenishment and even greater demand forecast. 445,000 tonnes of grapes were harvested in 2014.
All grape growing regions witnessed a two-speed growing season which commenced early but slowed in the lead-up to vintage with a run of fine but cool weather in most regions allowing for good flavour development. . .
The Prime Minister John Key called New Zealand’s seafood ‘the best in the world’ in opening the Seafood Industry Conference in Wellington.
John Key said he’s travelled all over the world and eaten seafood in all sorts of places, but ‘without doubt New Zealand produces the best and I’ll challenge anyone to show me better.”
“I’ve hosted Hilary Clinton, to Will and Kate, and they’ve all been impressed by our seafood,” he told delegates. . .
Thursday’s questions were:
1. Who said: Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.?
2. What were Fred Dagg’s sons called and who created them?
3. It’s blague in French, facezia or scherzo in Italian, broma or chiste in Spanish and kōrero whakakata in Maori, what is it in English?
4. He co-hosted and television comedy show satirising current affairs and often portrayed Rob Muldoon, who is he?
5. What’s your favourite funniest book and/or film?
Points for answers:
Willdwan got 2 1/2 (1/2 because there were 2 parts to #2) plus a near-enough for 3#
J BLoggs wins an electronic batch of shortbread with a clean sweep.
Andrei got 2 1/2.
Answers follow the break:
New Zealand had a seasonally adjusted net gain (more arrivals than departures) of 4,500 migrants in July 2014. This is the highest net gain since the record of 4,700 migrants in February 2003.
Net migration has increased in most months over the past year. The difference between the net gains in July 2013 and July 2014 was mainly due to:
- more non-New Zealand citizens arriving (up 1,200)
- fewer New Zealand citizens leaving for Australia (down 800).
The big drop in the net loss to Australia is particularly good news.
New Zealanders are voting with their feet – returning from across the Tasman or not going there in the first place.
That is a good reflection on the economy and job prospects here and a poor one on them there.
In the July 2014 year, migrant arrivals numbered 102,400 (up 15 percent from 2013). Migrant departures numbered 61,400 (down 22 percent). This resulted in a net gain of 41,000 migrants, the highest annual gain since the August 2003 year (41,200). New Zealand recorded its highest-ever net gain of 42,500 migrants in the May 2003 year.
In the latest year, New Zealand had a net loss of 7,300 migrants to Australia, well down from 29,200 a year earlier. Net gains were recorded from most other countries, led by India (7,700), China (6,600), the United Kingdom (5,500), and the Philippines (3,100).
Compared to the July 2013 year, the biggest increase in visa type for arriving migrants was student visas (up 4,800). Migrants from India and China most commonly arrived in New Zealand to study, while migrants from the United Kingdom and the Philippines most often arrived to work.
One of the areas which is most attractive to people from the Philippines is dairying.
There is a shortage of good employees in the industry and Filipinos are filling gaps which New Zealanders aren’t keen on filling.
Labour is promising to create 3000 jobs a year for Otago which shows a distinct lack of ambition when compared with job growth over recent years:
David Cunliffe has committed to short-changing Otago on the job front with his pledge today to create 3000 more jobs in the region if elected, National’s Economic Development spokesman Steven Joyce says.
“In his press release today, Mr Cunliffe announced that Labour’s policies would create 3,000 more jobs in Otago in the next three years. However that would be a major slowdown on job growth achieved in the last five years,” Mr Joyce says.
“In the last five years our policy mix has seen 23,000 extra jobs created in the Otago region according to Statistics New Zealand. That’s an average of 4,600 jobs a year. Mr Cunliffe is proposing to cut that growth rate by nearly 80 per cent with his ‘economic upgrade’.
“On the one hand I understand Mr Cunliffe’s lack of ambition. A Labour-Greens government with at least four big extra taxes and large amounts of extra spending and the high interest rates that go with it would be a massive drag on the Otago economy.
“On the other hand, with their policy prescription I think they would struggle to even create the extra 1000 jobs a year he suggests.
“Under this Government Otago’s unemployment rate has dropped to 3.3 per cent – one of the lowest in the country.
“And great Otago companies are flat out creating the Innovation and Knowledge Centre Mr Cunliffe says he wants to create.
“Mr Cunliffe is struggling under the weight of his own lack of knowledge about what is happening in the region.
“I suspect that once Otago people compare their economic performance under this government with Mr Cunliffe’s prescription, they will likely tell him to keep his ‘economic upgrade’.”
The Otago unemployment rate is now at about 3.5%.
That’s getting down to the unemployable – those who either can’t or won’t work for a variety of reasons.
One reason for that is government policies and the economic climate, including low interest rates, have given businesses the confidence to invest and expand.
But that confidence will be severely dented by the anti-business, anti-progress policies Labour and its coalition partners – the Green, New Zealand First and Internet Mana parties would impose on us.
They are threatening us with more and higher taxes, greater compliance costs, less flexible employment laws, higher KiwiSaver contributions, higher interest rates . . .
None of those is conducive to business growth and the jobs which rely on it.