365 days of gratitude

July 11, 2018

Watching the Inside Stories in the videos I posted this afternoon reminded me again of how much we have to celebrate and I”m grateful for that.


Word of the day

July 11, 2018

Seton – a skein of cotton or other absorbent material passed below the skin and left with the ends protruding, to promote drainage of fluid or to act as a counterirritant; a thread or the like inserted beneath the skin to provide drainage or to guide subsequent passage of a tube.


New Zealand’s Inside Stories

July 11, 2018

New Zealand Story has just released the first three ‘Inside Stories’ for its ongoing series promoting Aotearoa – the Global Film, Ingenuity Film, and Food & Beverage Film.

Each video is fronted by a range of highly acclaimed individuals including tech entrepreneurs, scientists, inventors and famous actors, and aims to bridge a narrative about New Zealand that isn’t hobbits, the All Blacks and beautiful landscapes to the rest of the world.

Each of the three videos is connected to a wider campaign that provides authentic insight into New Zealand stories from the eyes of global and local identities. The campaign argues New Zealand’s reputation for outstanding natural beauty is only part of our story, and showcases our pool of artists, business people, entrepreneurs, inventors and innovators whose stories are just as awe-inspiring as our landscapes. . .

 

It’s fair to say the rest of the world knows very little about New Zealand, and to get the point across NZ Story plans to release a multitude of smaller stories to create a narrative big enough to demonstrate that New Zealand’s contribution to the world is limitless and impossible to ignore.

To do so, it wants to recruit hundreds if not thousands of people who have played a part in our global presence. It has already interviewed immigrants, expats and everyday Kiwis, speaking to everyone from school kids to pensioners and everyone in-between, covering stories about food and wine, culture and invention, business, creativity and much, much more.

But it needs your help and asks you to become a New Zealand storyteller by sharing our story with the world to help tell the world what New Zealand has to offer.

You can read more at Inside Stories.

You can follow New Zealand’s Inside Stories on YouTube ; Facebook ;

LinkedIn ; Twitter and Vimeo.


Rural round-up

July 11, 2018

Prized stock castration frustrates farmer – Andrew Ashton:

After waking up to find someone had castrated two of his bulls, a Hawke’s Bay farmer expected the police to arrest and charge the culprit. Instead he says he was advised to sell up and move.

Pongaroa farmer David Vitsky said the incident was the latest in a litany of stock rustling and rural crime stretching back several years.

But Hawke’s Bay police say they are unable to gather firm evidence to charge anyone.

“We’ve been plagued by a continuous raid of stock rustling, thefts and the police fail to get prosecutions,” Vitsky told Hawke’s Bay Today. . . 

Pagan’s shear determination on screen – Sally Rae:

She might be the South’s latest film star but Pagan Karauria is no prima donna actress.

Left in charge of  father Dion Morrell’s shearing business while he is in Japan for several weeks, the Alexandra woman  has been up every morning between 4.15am and 4.30am.

Her day is full as her mobile phone rings constantly and she ensures the smooth running of seven gangs. But, as she puts it, “I’m just cruising along doing what I love.”

Mrs Karauria’s passion for the shearing industry is undeniable –  she is both a shearer and  woolhandler and had the remarkable distinction of competing in both disciplines in the All Nations competition at last year’s World Shearing and Woolhandling Championships in Invercargill. . .

PGG Wrightson says “no comment” on report of possible $600M buyout – Sophie Boot:

(BusinessDesk) – PGG Wrightson says it has no comment on Australian media reporting that ASX-listed agribusiness company Elders is looking to buy it for $600 million.

A column in The Australian says Elders may seek to raise A$300 million via a rights issue to help fund the purchase, with the remainder funded via debt. The PGG Wrightson board “met on Friday to discuss the sale of the business and speculation is building that Elders has already been told that it is the preferred bidder”, The Australian reported. . .

Decision made on fate of defunct Gore meat plant – Sally Rae:

Blue Sky Meats has decided to sell its Gore plant which has been non-operational since late 2016.

Last year, the company announced it was reviewing its options for the unprofitable plant. Options ranged from reinstatement of full operations to an asset sale.

When the plant was temporarily closed, Gore staff were offered secondment to the company’s Morton Mains plant.

In a statement, the company said the decision was not made lightly but the board felt it was the best course of action for the company’s ongoing financial performance.

Blue Sky Meats has released details of its annual report for the 2018 financial year which showed a much improved result with a net profit before tax of $3.7million, compared to a $2.5 million loss the previous year. . .

The science behind the Impossible Burger – Siouxsie Wiles:

Air New Zealand has just announced The Impossible Burger is now available to a minuscule number of their customers, a move described as an “existential threat” by New Zealand First’s Mark Patterson. So what is all the fuss is about?

This week, Air New Zealand announced that Business Premier “foodies” on their Los Angeles to Auckland flights would be able to try out the “plant-based goodness” that is the Impossible Burger. Lamb + Beef New Zealand, which represents sheep and beef farmers, is clearly peeved that our national carrier wouldn’t rather showcase some great Kiwi “grass-fed, free range, GMO free, naturally raised” beef and lamb instead. Mark Patterson, New Zealand First’s spokesperson for Primary Industries even went as far as to put out a press release calling the announcement an “existential threat to New Zealand’s second-biggest export earner”. Meanwhile, vegetarians on social media are left a bit puzzled as to why Patterson is so against them having a special vegetarian option for dinner. My guess is it’s because the Impossible Burger is no ordinary veggie burger. . . 

Sheepdog trialists gather for annual battle of wits against woolly opponents in Hāwera – Catherine Groenestein:

“Wallago, Dick! Wallago, Dick!”

Dick the sheepdog’s muzzle is greying but his eyes are still fixed on the sheep. He trots with purpose, rather than running flat out like his apprentice, a youngster called Jay.

After a lifetime of farm work and winning many trials, Dick, who’s 14,  can almost work the sheep around the obstacles on a course by himself. . . 

Whopping truffle from Waipara farm sets NZ record – Gerard Hutching:

Waipara’s Jax Lee has unearthed a New Zealand record of 1.36 kilograms for a black truffle, worth thousands of dollars when she exports it.

Truffle expert Dr Ian Hall said a similar sized black (or Perigord) truffle had been dug up in Gisborne in the 1990s, “but I’m sure Jax’s would be a New Zealand record.”

Truffles may not be quite black gold, but they are considered the world’s most expensive food. The equivalent weight in gold of Lee’s example is 43 ounces, worth $54,000. . . 

A tale of two expos – Post Veganism:

A couple years ago, I attended the Natural Food Expo West for the first time. The section of the main exhibit hall that I first wandered into was row after row of nutraceutical suppliers. These suppliers, including many from China, provided many of the vitamins, minerals, herbs used to supplement and fortify many of the “natural” and “healthy” foods and drinks I’d later see a plethora of elsewhere at this expo. What was less ubiquitous was real whole food, that is food that was minimally processed, well grown or raised  and that didn’t need to be fortified or supplemented to be nutrient dense.

So this past April, I returned to Anaheim once again to attend the Natural Food Expo West held at the convention center. This year the event was larger than ever, and I only had portions of two days so couldn’t cover the entire hall. Maybe I just missed it, but all the nutraceutical suppliers seemed to be organized more around the periphery rather than taking so much area on the floor this time. Though there still was plenty of “natural” and ‘healthy” junk food fortified with vitamins, minerals, herbs and- the new rage- probiotics. However, much to my surprise, there was a larger presence of real food with more fermented foods, minimally processed seaweed items, and vinegar as well as plenty of bone broth, jerkies and other grass finished meats . . 


What’s more important

July 11, 2018

If you had $2.8 billion to spend you could:

  • Pay nurses, teachers and support staff more.
  • Put more money into helping children who get to school without pre-learning skills necessary to succeed.
  • Put more money into helping children further through the schools system who are failing.
  • Not have to cancel the $6.5 million boost for the cochlear implant programme.
  • Find any number of ways to help those most in need.

Or spend it on fee-free study for tertiary students that hasn’t encouraged more students; has one nothing to encourage more maori, Pacifica or people from lower socio-economic backgrounds and put subsidizing students ahead of improving the quality of teaching.

What’s more important?

Those people who have had surgery and other hospital appointments cancelled because of the nurses’ strike will know.

Those who don’t get the help they need to succeed at school will too.

So will the people who will no longer get a cochlear implant.

 


All out

July 11, 2018

The 12 Thai scouts and their leader have been rescued from the flooded cave.

All 13 members of Thailand’s Wild Boar junior soccer team have made it to safety in one of the most inspiring rescue missions the world has witnessed.

THE Tham Luang cave has delivered its miracle, with all 13 members of the Wild Boar soccer team making it to safety in one of the most inspiring rescue missions the world has witnessed.

The Royal Thai Navy SEALS have confirmed all 12 boys and their coach have successfully swum through flooded passages and are now either out of the cave system or currently making their way.

It is understood the team’s coach is still at the third chamber where rescuers have set up a base camp, but will be coming out soon. . .

That they were all alive when the rescuers first reached them was amazing.

That all 13 have survived is due to the skill and bravery of the rescuers.

It is very sad that one of them, Petty Officer Saman Kunan, died in the process.


Quote of the day

July 11, 2018

The exception is more interesting than the rule. The rule proves nothing; the exception proves everything. In the exception the power of real life breaks through the crust of a mechanism that has become torpid by repetition. – Carl Schmitt who was born on this day in 1888.


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