Forestry workers dodge poachers’ bullets – Sonita Chandar:
Forestry workers are dodging bullets from poachers, says a forest manager.
They are being fired at by people hunting wild pigs illegally released in the private forests.
”Our staff shouldn’t have to worry about going to work and being shot, but this is the reality,” said Phil De La Mare, Otago regional manager for forestry plantation company, Ernslaw One.
”These unpermitted hunters forget it is a workplace and go shooting any time, even when there are people out working.
”Their actions are putting our staff and contractors in a risky situation and for us.
”Providing a safe workplace environment has become a challenge.” . .
Putting Rustling back into the history books – Rick Powdrell:
Contrary to talk, the meat and fibre industries are not broken as the fundamentals to take both sectors forward to much greater heights remain. Still, it requires an entire industry shared vision going forward and that’s of course easier said than done.
This undoubtedly involves strong leadership accompanied by a strong grassroots involvement. It hardly entails re-inventing the wheel, but rather more awareness of the areas we need to improve and a path developed to redeem theses issues.
The red meat sector strategy has already identified significant issues, with the Beef + Lamb: Red Meat Profit Partnership focusing on topics behind the farm gate with the aim of lifting on farm performance.
This collaboration of Beef + Lamb NZ, meat companies, banks and government foreshadows a united industry approach. . .
NZ exports to EU may face stricter pesticide standards – Yvonne O’Hara:
New Zealand’s fruit and vegetable export trade to Europe could be affected by as much as $600 million if a proposed European Union (EU) reduction of some pesticide residue levels on imported food goes ahead, Agcarm chief executive Graeme Peters says.
The European Commission (EC) had been looking at regulating common crop protection products that had endocrine-disrupting properties. The EC believed reducing endocrine-disrupting pesticides would benefit the environment; be good for the health of growers, workers, rural communities and consumers; and boost the economy.
It will release criteria to identify those properties in the next few weeks. . .
The Commerce Commission today released its final report on Fonterra’s base milk price calculation for the 2013/14 dairy season. The base milk price is the price Fonterra pays to farmers for raw milk.
The Commission is required to review Fonterra’s calculation of the base milk price each year as part of the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act’s milk price monitoring regime. The review assesses whether Fonterra’s calculation approach provides incentives for it to operate efficiently and provides for contestability in the market for purchasing farmers’ milk.
The most significant issue in this year’s review has been Fonterra’s decision to pay farmers an adjusted price for the 2013/14 season that is less than the milk price calculated under the company’s Milk Price Manual.
The Commission’s overall findings are that the way Fonterra is calculating and applying its proposed adjustment to the base milk price is not consistent with incentives for it to operate efficiently; however, the approach is consistent with contestability in the market under the Act. . .
Field day to give insight into rural work – Yvonne O’Hara:
Rural Contractors New Zealand (RCNZ) is to hold its second field day on September 17 at Brian Hughes’ yard at Waimatua, near Invercargill, from 10am to 3pm.
RCNZ vice-president and contractor David Kean, of Centre Bush, said the field day, held in association with Work and Income, encouraged people to find out what it was like working in the agricultural contracting sector.
”People can drift in and drift out again throughout the day,” Mr Kean said.
Those attending the field day would have the opportunity to drive large tractors and operate an assortment of machinery under supervision. . .
Farmers’ need for speed – Chris Lewis:
We are ready when you are, and we have been ready for some time. The key investors and the next government need to know farmers and rural households are sick of the inferior connectivity they are receiving. We are in the need for speed and reliable connectivity; it is not only imperative for rural productivity, but for empowering rural households.
The agricultural industry generates 73 percent of New Zealand’s merchandise exports, so you would think that the powers and investors that be, would recognise a gaping hole when they see it. What is not ok is that whilst rural businesses and households are paying for the same services as our urban counterparts, we are not getting the same results.
Market research proves rural New Zealand is being neglected. We are armed with the latest devices, on average 9 connectable devices per business and 5 to 6 of those connected at one time, but have limited infrastructure to use them. Chorus recently went to the rural market through Colmar Brunton to find out exactly what we have been dealing with, and it should come as no surprise that they found we have the same level of needs as urban businesses and households. . .
Viola looks out over the two acres of land she and her husband, Deo, inherited from her father. The fields are thick with bushy, yellow-green vines. The beans are ready to be harvested.
Two and a half years ago, Viola’s fields were nearly bare. Even though she and Deo had land, they could not afford the seed and fertilizer needed to plant on all of it. Harvests were low, with just enough to feed the family. There was no surplus to sell for income.
“Before One Acre Fund, we would just manage to have enough to eat. We couldn’t sell anything we grew,” Viola says. “I would go to purchase fertilizer, but I would not be able to buy enough.” . . .
Rural Contractors New Zealand (RCNZ) is urging its members to ensure they have all the correct transport licences for the coming season.
RCNZ president Steve Levet says with the new season fast approaching it is timely for rural contractors and their staff to check to see they have the correct licence AND a ‘Wheels Endorsements’ if required.
“It is incumbent on rural contractors to ensure both they and their staff have all the correct licences when moving their tractors and machinery around the country,” he adds.
“There are no excuses for not having the correct licenses and/or wheels endorsement. If contractors are not sure they should find out – all the necessary information is under the members section of our website: www.ruralcontractors.org.nz .”
Mr Levet says the different types of licences rural contractors may require include: . . .