Rural round-up

New Zealand’s most improved river is in irrigation territory – Gerard Hutching:

North Canterbury’s Pahau River, situated in one of the most intensively irrigated catchments in the country, has been awarded the supreme prize for most improved river at the annual River Awards.

The top prize was based on the Hurunui river showing the most declining levels of the bacteria E coli over the last 10 years, achieving reductions of 15.6 per cent a year.

Pahau Enhancement Group chairman and dairy farmer David Croft said the result came as no surprise.

“The farming community has been aware of problems with the Pahau for more than 10 years and that’s why the enhancement group was originally set up – because of poor water quality. We had a choice to deal with it or ECan (Environment Canterbury) would take the initiative,” Croft said. . . 

Former biodiesel plant now makes cooking oil – Heather Chalmers:

South Canterbury paddocks covered in bright yellow flowers in spring are the first step of an expanding home-grown South Island business, turning oilseed rape – regarded as a commodity crop overseas – into a high-value liquid gold.

Producing this liquid gold is Canterbury-owned Pure Oil New Zealand, which operates a large commercial oilseed crush plant at Rolleston, south of Christchurch, turning the small black seed into high-quality food-grade oil. Since starting in 2012, production has tripled from 5000 to 6000 tonnes of seed, up to 15,000t now.

Imported rapeseed oil, also known as canola, is a familiar staple on supermarket shelves where it is sold as a cheap salad and cooking oil, with millions of tonnes of seed grown world-wide. Big overseas export growers are Canada and Australia, with the term canola a contraction of Canada and ola, for “oil low acid”. . . 

Efficiency ups processing at Westland Milk – Janna Sherman:

Improved plant efficiencies have contributed to an increase in processed milk through the Hokitika dairy factory, Westland Milk Products says.

Peak milk for the new season was achieved on November 2 with 3,564,935 litres received.

Chief executive Toni Brendish said that was just one tanker load short of the previous season’s peak milk of 3,593,905 litres.

Peak processed milk through the factory was 4,110,673 litres, on October 25.

“This includes bought-in milk and is 150,000 litres more than the previous season – 3,955,907 litres; an increase largely made possible by improved plant efficiency,” Ms Brendish said.  . . 

$1000 cadetship for Briar – Alexia Johnston:

Briar Swanson has landed a cadetship, giving her farming career a welcome boost.

The St Kevin’s College leaver has been accepted for a two-year cadetship at the Coleridge Downs Training Farm, a role she will take up in January.

The training farm is part of a group of farms in the Rakaia Gorge in central Canterbury which cover 10,000ha and run 42,000 stock units.

Briar’s career received an extra boost earlier this month when the South Canterbury North Otago (SCNO) Deer Farmers Trust announced it would provide her with financial assistance, to help her get what she needed for the cadetship, including wet-weather gear, boots and a heading pup. . . 

Would you eat ‘clean’ meat?  – Chase Purdy:

There’s no shortage of buzz among food-tech companies about how, once perfected, cell-cultured meats will reduce the amount of greenhouse gases we pump into the atmosphere, use less land and water, and save billions of animals each year from slaughter. But as these high-tech meats edge closer to grocery stores and restaurants, the people creating them are wrestling with a crucial question: What do you call them?

It’s a good but vexing problem. The need to find a name indicates how close the technology is to jumping from lab to market. But translating terminology from scientific jargon to consumer-friendly lingo is nettlesome. Forces within the nascent cell-cultured meat industry are working to get everyone to coalesce around one name: clean meat.

Not everyone agrees with the choice. For starters, the term “clean meat” doesn’t translate into all non-English languages easily. In Dutch, for instance, it carries unappealing connotations about how the meat might be processed. Also, some have complained the term implies conventional meat—the only kind people currently can access—is inherently dirty. That could risk putting people on the defensive from the get-go. . . 

One Response to Rural round-up

  1. Will says:

    Good luck with the ‘clean meat’ label. Fake meat is what it is and that’s what it will be called.

    Made up my mind to get a quad copter. Spent all morning climbing around a horrible paddock we euphemistically call the ‘Upper Slope’ to muster one ewe and her strapping twins. I had earlier missed them in a gully. Would have spotted them from above. And water leaks and rustlers! Endless possibilities.

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