365 days of gratitude

March 2, 2018

The phone rang, showing a number I didn’t recognise.

We got past the introductory pleasantries then on to the business – someone had suggested I would be a good candidate for a vacancy on a board, would I be interested?

I said thanks but no thanks – I really didn’t think it was a good match for my skills.

But being asked gave me a wee boost and I’m grateful for that.


Word of the day

March 2, 2018

Physis  – nature; the principle of growth or change in nature;
nature as the source of growth or change; something that grows, becomes, or develops; the translucent, cartilaginous disc separating the epiphysis from the metaphysis which is responsible for longitudinal growth of long bones.


Get job title right on census

March 2, 2018

DairyNZ points out the importance of getting job titles right on the census:

The census is our best opportunity to find out exactly how many people are working on dairy farms and in what roles. This is critical information that DairyNZ and government need so we can work together on things such as immigration policy, industry training, and ensuring we have capable people in the pipeline to do the work you need doing on your farm.

When you are filling in your census form on or before the 6th March PLEASE use one of the following job roles, and encourage your employees to do the same. Use the one that is the closest fit to the role you actually do. It will make a difference to us effectively working on your behalf. The job roles are:

  • Dairy Farm Assistant
  • Dairy Farm Herd Manager
  • Dairy Farm Assistant Manager
  • Dairy Farm Manager
  • Dairy Farm Owner
  • Sharemilker
  • Contract Milker
  • Relief Milker
  • Dairy Cattle Grazier


Friday’s answers

March 2, 2018

Thank you to Teletext who posed Thursday’s questions and can claim a virtual case of mixed stone fruit for stumping us all by leaving the answers below.


Rural round-up

March 2, 2018

Paving the way for better wool returns – Peter McDonald:

Is another “wool boom” on its way?

Well that’s a bold question to ask considering the prices we are receiving at this present time for our crossbred wool. If we can park the present and try to look to the future we may find some green shoots of optimism regarding wool.

I’m not going to list off wool’s attributes as most reading this column fully understand them and to a large degree here lies the problem. We know these attributes well but an entire generation of consumers has lost the connection with wool as a fibre. These characteristics I believe should be more relevant in the near future to connected modern consumers who are highly choice savvy.

Why am I optimistic? A growing global movement is expanding rapidly around fixing plastic pollution in our oceans. David Attenborough’s appeal through emotive images has placed the plastic catastrophe in our oceans directly into millions of living rooms. . . 

Record export lamb prices nudge terms of trade to new high:

Record export lamb and butter prices helped boost New Zealand’s terms of trade by 0.8 percent in the December 2017 quarter, to another new high, Stats NZ said today.

Export meat prices rose 7.5 percent in the December 2017 quarter, mainly reflecting high lamb prices (up 12 percent).

Total export prices rose 4.9 percent, with dairy and forestry prices also contributing to the rise. . . 

South Canterbury arable farmers lose $30m from stubble-burn ban – Pat Deavoll:

A fire ban and wet autumn and winter may have cost Mid and South Canterbury’s arable farmers more than $30 million, with several of them showing losses of more than $500,000. 

“I think the $30m loss is true, I’ve done the same calculations. It’s cost me a considerable amount of money,” said Federated Farmers arable industry group Guy Wigley, who farms at Waimate.

Wigley said every week of autumn planting which had been delayed had cost him about a quarter of a tonne of yield . . 

Call for farmers to report high-risk animal purchases:

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) urges dairy or beef farmers who believe they may have animals that could be at high risk for Mycoplasma bovis infection to make contact immediately.

The Ministry’s Director of Response, Geoff Gwyn, says MPI is accelerating its tracing and surveillance programme so that a decision whether to proceed with eradication can be made as soon as possible.

“Right now, we need to hear from any farmers who have bought cows and calves or milk for calf feed from farms that have been publicly identified as infected. . . 

Farmers must voice concerns – Neal Wallace:

The chairman-elect of Beef + Lamb New Zealand is a Southlander who believes farming should not shy away from challenges or debate. He brought Neal Wallace up to date on what to expect when he takes over from James Parsons.

Andrew Morrison never intended having an involvement in farmer politics until he was drawn to make submissions on regional and district council plans.

Fearing councils could take control of riparian margins and strips and restrict cultivation on flood plains, Morrison lobbied to preserve landowners’ property rights and soon found himself involved with Federated Farmers.

It was an apprenticeship that taught him plenty and ultimately led to him being chairman-elect of Beef + Lamb New Zealand. . . 

High venison prices no big deal – Annette Scott:

European importers are starting to baulk at high New Zealand venison prices but it’s not a major concern – yet, Deer Industry NZ marketing manager Nick Taylor says.

“They are coming over here to negotiate export contracts saying it is very expensive but can we have some more.

“They still want it and they are still buying,” Taylor said.

But some importers are going home empty-handed, reluctant to pay the price some others, both from the United States and the European Union, are paying. . .

 

Richie McCaw’s flying milk run:

Fonterra provided nearly 20 million packs of milk free to 145,000 primary school students last year as part of its Milk for Schools scheme, now in its fifth year.

At the 2012 launch, 119 schools joined and last year 1431 schools took part.

To mark the fifth year, former All Black captain Richie McCaw will fly special helicopter milk runs to schools.

He will visit four schools selected from online entries saying why he should visit. Where possible, he will fly in to deliver milk. Local farmers will also be part of the visit. . .

Fonterra set to make further gains in global market with new Bangladesh partnership:

Fonterra is breaking new ground in South Asia’s rapidly growing dairy market, with the signing of a new distribution agreement that will make Anchor available to millions more consumers in Bangladesh. The deal is part of the Co-operative’s ongoing efforts to win in key overseas markets, by spreading the goodness of dairy nutrition.

The population of Bangladesh has grown by more than 10 per cent in the last 10 years reaching over 160 million people and it now makes up over two per cent of the world’s total population.  Matched by strong economic growth, consumers in Bangladesh are looking for affordable healthy nutrition options, such as high-quality dairy. 

Fonterra’s Managing Director of Sri Lanka and Indian Subcontinent, Sunil Sethi said Anchor is well placed to drive growth, while improving the wellbeing of Bangladeshis. . .

Joint venture company commences operations in Rolleston:

Pure Nutrition Ltd (PNL) the joint venture company formed by Ausnutria and Westland Milk Products, has commenced operation in the Izone business hub near Rolleston.

PNL is a stand-alone blending and canning company. It will can milk powders and other nutritional products sourced from Westland for Ausnutria and other customers. The company was established through an initial investment by Ausnutria of NZ$4.5million cash, and the transfer to Pure Nutrition of land owned by Westland at its Rolleston site, which had a value of NZ$3million. Ownership is 60% Ausnutria and 40% Westland Milk Products. . . 


What do we care about?

March 2, 2018

If a reporter asked you what issues do you care about, what would you say?

I’d say, in alphabetical order, those impacting on the economy, education, environment, health, security and welfare.

That’s not what Stuff thinks.

Its headlines says where new National Party leader Simon Bridges stands on issues you care about?

I took that to mean the most important issues but the story gives us the new leader’s views on the drinking age, marriage equality and euthanasia.

It then goes on to the environment, climate change, abortion, marijuana, and the regions.

This reminds me of the tiresomely repetitive focus on former Prime Minister John Key’s views on the 1981 Springbok tour which said a lot more about the questioner than the then-PM.

Stuff’s issues are ones on which many will have a view, and may care about deeply, but would most come top of mind if people were asked what they care about?

If you’re a socially liberal member of the media or wanting a debate in a university common room, maybe.

But I doubt they’d be listed by most other people who are much more likely to care more about matters which directly and practically impact their lives and their families.

Those matters are much harder to cover than most of the ones raised by Stuff which are conscience issues, with one-off votes. Most are not the issues which provide jobs, put food on the table nor do most produce policies which lead to a more productive country with happier and healthier people.


Quote of the day

March 2, 2018

Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities. – Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr Seuss) who was born on this day in 1904.


March 2 in history

March 2, 2018

537 – Siege of Rome: The Ostrogoth army under king Vitiges began the siege of the capital. Belisarius conducteda delaying action outside the Flaminian Gate.

986 Louis V became King of the Franks.

1127 Assassination of Charles the Good, Count of Flanders.

1316  Robert II of Scotland, was born (d. 1390).

1545 Thomas Bodley, English diplomat and library founder, was born (d. 1613).

1578 George Sandys, English colonist and poet, was born (d. 1644).1717The Loves of Mars and Venus was the first ballet performed in England.

1791 Long-distance communication speeds up with the unveiling of asemaphore machine in Paris.

1793 Sam Houston, President of the Republic of Texas, was born  (d. 1863).

1807  The U.S. Congress passed an act to “prohibit the importation of slaves into any port or place within the jurisdiction of the United States… from any foreign kingdom, place, or country.”

1808 The inaugural meeting of the Wernerian Natural History Society, a Scottish learned society, was held in Edinburgh.

1815 Signing of Kandyan treaty by British invaders and Sri Lankan King.

1836 Texas Revolution: Declaration of independence of the Republic of Texas from Mexico.

1842 The Grand National steeplechase at Aintree was won by Gaylad, ridden by Tom Olliver who won two other Grand national winners.

1855 Alexander II became Tsar of Russia.

1861 Tsar Alexander  II signed the emancipation reform into law, abolishing Russian serfdom.

1863 The U.S. Congress authorised track width of 4 ft 8+12 in (1,435 mm) for Union Pacific Railroad.

1865 The Volkner Incident: Missionary Carl Völkner was hanged from a willow tree near his church at Opotiki during the East Cape War.

Missionary Carl Volkner killed at Opotiki

1877 Just two days before inauguration, the U.S. Congress declaresRutherford B. Hayes the winner of the election even though Samuel J. Tilden had won the popular vote on November 7, 1876.

1888 The Convention of Constantinople was signed, guaranteeing free maritime passage through the Suez Canal during war and peace.

1901 The U.S. Congress passed the Platt amendment, limiting the autonomy of Cuba as a condition for the withdrawal of American troops.

1903 In New York City the Martha Washington Hotel opened, becoming the first hotel exclusively for women.

1904 Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel), American author, was born  (d. 1991).

1917 The enactment of the Jones-Shafroth Act granted Puerto Ricans United States citizenship.

1917 Desi Arnaz, Cuban-born actor and bandleader, was born (d. 1986).

1917 Nicholas II of Russia abdicated the throne in favor of his brotherMichael II.

1919 The first Communist International meets in Moscow.

1923 George Basil Cardinal Hume, Archbishop of Westminster, was born (d. 1999).

1931 Mikhail Gorbachev, President of the Soviet Union and Nobel laureate, was born.

1931 Tom Wolfe, American author, was born.

1933 The film King Kong opened at New York’s Radio City Music Hall.

1937  The Steel Workers Organizing Committee signed a surprise collective bargaining agreement with U.S. Steel, leading to unionization of the United States steel industry.

1938 Ricardo Lagos, President of Chile, was born.

1938 Lawrence Payton, American singer and songwriter (The Four Tops), was born  (d. 1997).

1939 Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli was elected Pope and took the name Pius XII.

1942  Lou Reed, American singer and guitarist, was born (d. 2013).

1943  Tony Meehan, English drummer (The Shadows), was born (d. 2005).

1946 Ho Chi Minh was elected the President of North Vietnam.

1948 Rory Gallagher, Irish guitarist, was born (d. 1995).

1949 Captain James Gallagher landed his B-50 Superfortress Lucky Lady IIin Fort Worth, after completing the first non-stop around-the-world aeroplane flight in 94 hours and one minute.

1949 – The first automatic street light was installed in New Milford, Conn..

1950 Karen Carpenter, American singer and drummer (The Carpenters), was born (d. 1983).

1953 The Academy Awards were first broadcast on television by NBC.

1955 King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia abdicated the throne in favor of his father, King Norodom Suramarit.

1955  Jay Osmond, American musician (The Osmonds, was born.

1956 John Cowsill, American musician (The Cowsills), was born.

1956 Mark Evans, Australian bassist (AC/DC), was born.

1956 Morocco declared its independence from France.

1962 Jon Bon Jovi, American musician (Bon Jovi), was born.

1962 In Burma, the army led by General Ne Win seized power in a coup d’état.

1968 Daniel Craig, English actor, was born.

1969 The first test flight of the Anglo-French Concorde was conducted.

1970 Rhodesia declared itself a republic.

1972  The Pioneer 10 space probe was launched from Cape Canaveral.

1977 Chris Martin, English musician (Coldplay), was born.

1978 Czech Vladimír Remek becomes the first non-Russian or non-American to go into space aboard Soyuz 28.

1989 Twelve European Community nations agreed to ban the production of all chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) by the end of the century.

1990  Nelson Mandela elected deputy President of the African National Congress

1991 Battle at Rumaila Oil Field brings an end to the 1991 Gulf War.

1992 ArmeniaAzerbaijanKazakhstanKyrgyzstanMoldovaSan Marino,TajikistanTurkmenistan and Uzbekistan joined the United Nations.

2004  Al Qaeda carried out the Ashoura Massacre, killing 170 and wounding over 500.

2012 – March 2–3, 2012 tornado outbreak: A tornado outbreak occurred over a large section of the Southern United States and into the Ohio Valley region, resulting in 40 fatalities.

2017 – The elements MoscoviumTennessine, and Oganesson were officially added to the periodic table at a conference in Moscow, Russia.

Sourced from NZ History On Line & Wikipedia


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