Word of the day

January 16, 2017

Wifty – eccentric; silly; flighty; scatterbrained; unfocused; vague, imprecise; (of thinking, argument, etc.); unclear; fuzzy; muddle-headed.


Rural round-up

January 16, 2017

In lament of the NZ Farm – Dr Rosie Bosworth:

On the road to becoming the Detroit of agriculture.

Colleague and Christchurch based technology strategist Ben Reid, recently tweeted that New Zealand is in danger of fast becoming the “Detroit of Agriculture” – a rustbelt left behind after production has moved elsewhere.” Unfortunately, I am inclined to agree.  With technologies, science and new business models evolving, accelerating and converging at current breakneck speeds, industries globally – from banking, transport, accommodation and healthcare are having the rug pulled right out from beneath their feet. And sadly (at least for New Zealand farmers), agriculture, our economic mainstay, is next up on the chopping block. Fast en route towards becoming a sunset industry.  Overtaken and displaced by disruptive technologies, science breakthroughs and new business models. And the people at the helm? Not the people on the inside like our dairy farmers, apple breeders and savvy winemakers. But by sneaker wearing tech millennials and wealthy Tesla driving Silicon Valley venture capitalists and well funded research agencies. . . 

Dry conditions take toll on Northland farmers:

A drought declaration in Northland is just a few weeks away, but as conditions in the region grow tougher, Federated Farmers says.

Federated Farmers Northland president John Blackwell said spring had been good for the region, but a dry November and December had caused problems across the board.

Halfway through November the rain had disappeared and south-westerly winds had had a very drying effect on the land, Mr Blackwell said. . . 

Dairy NZ to appeal decision on Greenpeace ad – Catherine Hutton:

One of the groups who complained that a Greenpeace advertisement was false and misleading says it plans to appeal the advertising watchdog’s decision.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) received 12 complaints about the advert, which blamed the dairy industry for water pollution, but dismissed all of them.

Dairy NZ, which represents dairy farmers, would not comment on the reasons it was appealing, ahead of the hearing.  . .

Hurunui Water Project says Greenpeace claims are exaggerated and out of date:

North Canterbury irrigation Company Hurunui Water Project today rejected claims by Greenpeace that the proposed scheme will lead to large-scale intensive dairying and consequent degradation of the Hurunui River.

“Greenpeace needs to actually read the latest information on the Hurunui Water Project (HWP) proposal that they have,” says HWP Chief Executive Alex Adams. “If they had done so, they would have seen the scheme is very different now to the original proposal they seem to be referring to, and that dairy development as a result of the scheme is planned to be to be a minor component.”

Adams said a 2016 survey of HWP shareholders showed the vast majority of the dryland farmers simply wanted irrigation to provide the assurance they needed to continue with their existing farming practice; only some 10 percent indicated that dairy conversions might be an option. . . 

Korean FTA delivers new round of tariff cuts:

More local businesses looking to expand into Korea will benefit from the latest round of tariff reductions under the New Zealand-Korea Free Trade Agreement, Trade Minister Todd McClay says.

The start of 2017 saw two thirds of New Zealand’s exports to Korea become duty free, up from 46 per cent in 2016.

“Thanks to this continued progress under the FTA, even more New Zealand businesses can compete favourably in the Korean market,” Mr McClay says.

New Zealand and Korea celebrated the first anniversary of the agreement in December 2016. Since the FTA’s entry into force in December 2015, New Zealand has experienced strong results particularly in the food and beverage sector where exports to Korea have increased by over 16%. . . 

Fonterra milk collections remain below previous season, trend shifts in Oz – Edwin Mitson

 (BusinessDesk) – Milk collections by Fonterra Cooperative Group this season are continuing to track below the previous year, mainly due to lower production on the North Island.

Collections in the seven months from June 1, 2016 to Dec. 31, 2016 were 881 million kilogrammes of milk solids, a fall of 5.5 percent on the same period in 2015, when prices were much lower. Some 186 million kgMS were collected in the month of December, down 5 percent on the same month a year ago.

There was a clear gap between the two main islands of New Zealand. Collections on the North Island fell 7 percent from June to December, while on the South Island they dropped just 2 percent in the same period. . . 

Commitment Pays Dividends for Taranaki Egg Farm Worker:

Team spirit, pride in her work and a determination to succeed in her studies have proved a winning combination for Taranaki woman Amy Kimura, who was recently named Poultry Industry Trainee of the Year for 2016. The national award is given each year to the top-performing trainee in all of the training courses run by the poultry industry in cooperation with the Primary Industry Training Organisation (PrimaryITO).

Amy, who is of Ngati Raukawa descent, is currently a Farm Worker at Aviagen New Zealand Ltd’s Taranaki production farms where her duties include general care and responsibility for the welfare of the poultry in her care. . . 

17 myths about agriculture in 2017 – Peterson farm Bros:

1. GMOs are evil

GMOs are a valuable technology used in science, medicine, and agriculture. Farmers use them to increase yields, reduce inputs, improve the soil, and provide resistance to drought, insects and weeds. There are GMOs being used all throughout society, and there is a very good chance you’ve consumed or used a GM product today. We do believe people should be free to avoid GMOs if they want to, but GMOs have been around for 2 decades (over a trillion meals consumed) without a single sickness or health issue resulting from consumption. . .

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Vandalism, activism or personal?

January 16, 2017

Is this vandalism environmental activism or someone with a personal grudge?

“Committed” offenders  would have been drenched as they slashed the tyres on three pivot irrigators, causing thousands of dollars worth of damage,  police said.

Senior Constable Craig Bennett, of Kurow,  believes the attack on the irrigators  occurred early on Saturday near State Highway 8 and Broken Hut Rd, just outside Omarama. Snr Const Bennett said it was too early to say if the vandalism was caused by an individual or several people, but the irrigators were not easily spotted from the road and fences would have been navigated by someone with  intent.

Forty-four tyres, valued at up to $800 each, were slashed, he said.

Omarama farmer and pivot irrigator owner Richard Subtil was upset  about the damage and urged people to come forward with information about the attack.

He believed the vandal or vandals  either had a problem with him or an issue with irrigation and decided to attack his equipment.

“I really hope it’s the latter. I’m trying to understand what motivated someone to do it. If it’s a personal vendetta I’m unsure what it’s about.

The Subtils won the 2015 Canterbury Ballance Farm Environment Awards (BFEA).

At a BFEA ceremony on March 26, the Subtils also collected the Massey University Innovation Award, WaterForce Integrated Management Award, Ballance Agri-Nutrients Soil Management Award and the Environment Canterbury Water Quality Award.

They are innovative farmers who have been recognised for their careful management of their farm and the environment. Entrants in the BEFA are also judged on their contribution to their community.

That doesn’t rule out a personal vendetta but this couple is very highly regarded which makes it less likely.

The damage could be an act of vandalism.  But irrigation in this area has attracted vehement opposition so it could be the work of one or more environmental activists who object to the greening of what was an arid landscape.

 


Quote of the day

January 16, 2017

  It’s the steady, quiet, plodding ones who win in the lifelong race. –  Robert W. Service who was born on this day in 1874.

He also said:

It isn’t the mountain ahead that wears you out; it’s the grain of sand in your shoe.


January 16 in history

January 16, 2017

27 BC  The title Augustus was bestowed upon Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian by the Roman Senate.

1120 The Council of Nablus was held, establishing the earliest surviving written laws of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem.

1362 A storm tide in the North Sea destroyed the German city of Rungholt on the island of Strand.

1412 The Medici family was appointed official banker of the Papacy.

1492 The first grammar of the Spanish language, was presented to Queen Isabella I.

1547  Ivan IV of Russia (Ivan the Terrible) became Tsar of Russia.

1556  Philip II became King of Spain.

1581 The English Parliament outlawed Roman Catholicism.

1605 The first edition of El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha(Book One of Don Quixote) by Miguel de Cervantes was published in Madrid.

1707  The Scottish Parliament ratified the Act of Union, paving the way for the creation of Great Britain.

1853 – Andre Michelin, French industrialist, was born (d. 1931).

1853  Gen Sir Ian Hamilton,  British military commander, was born  (d. 1947).

1874  Robert W. Service, Canadian poet, was born (d. 1958).

1883 The Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, establishing the United States Civil Service, was passed.

1896  Defeat of Cymru Fydd at South Wales Liberal Federation AGM, Newport, Monmouthshire.

1900 The United States Senate accepted the Anglo-German treaty of 1899 in which the United Kingdom renounced its claims to the Samoan islands.

1901 Frank Zamboni, American inventor, was born (d. 1988).

1902 – Eric Liddell, Scottish runner, was born (d. 1945).

1903 William Grover-Williams, English-French racing driver and WWIIresistance fighter, was born  (d. 1945).

1906  Diana Wynyard, British actress, was born (d. 1964).

1908 – Ethel Merman, American actress and singer, was born (d. 1984).

1909 Ernest Shackleton’s expedition found the magnetic South Pole.

1919  The United States ratified the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, authorising Prohibition in the United States one year after ratification.

1941 The War Cabinet approved the formation of the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) to enable the Royal New Zealand Air Force to release more men for service overseas. Within 18 months a Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps and Women’s Royal Naval Service had been created.

Women's Auxiliary Air Force founded
1942  Crash of TWA Flight 3, killing all 22 aboard, including film starCarole Lombard.

1944 Jim Stafford, American singer and songwriter, was born.

1948 Dalvanius Prime, New Zealand entertainer, was born (d. 2002).

1952 – King Fuad II of Egypt, was born.

1959 Sade, Nigerian-born singer, was born.

1970  Buckminster Fuller received the Gold Medal award from the American Institute of Architects.

1979 The Shah of Iran fled Iran with his family and relocated in Egypt.

1986 First meeting of the Internet Engineering Task Force.

1991  The United States went to war with Iraq, beginning the Gulf War(U.S. Time).

1992 El Salvador officials and rebel leaders signed the Chapultepec Peace Accords in Mexico City ending a 12-year civil war that claimed at least 75,000.

2001 – The First surviving Wikipedia edit was made: UuU

2001  Congolese President Laurent-Désiré Kabila was assassinated by one of his own bodyguards.

2001  US President Bill Clinton awarded former President Theodore Roosevelt a posthumous Medal of Honor for his service in the Spanish-American War.

2002 The UN Security Council unanimously established an arms embargo and the freezing of assets of Osama bin Laden, Al-Qaida, and the remaining members of the Taliban.

2003  The Space Shuttle Columbia took off for mission STS-107, its final one. Columbia disintegrated 16 days later on re-entry.

2006 Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf was sworn in as Liberia’s new president becoming Africa’s first female elected head of state.

2013 – An estimated 41 international workers were taken hostage in an attack in the town of In Aménas, Algeria.

2016  – 33 out of 126 freed hostages were injured and 23 killed in 2016 Ouagadougou attack in Burkina Faso.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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