Word of the day

November 8, 2019

Precipitative – causing, involving or marked by precipitation.


Thatcher thinks

November 8, 2019


Rural round-up

November 8, 2019

Muller: Labour wants ag gone – Annette Scott:

The Government does not see agribusiness as part of the future of New Zealand’s economy, National Party agriculture spokesman Todd Muller says.

And the freshwater reforms are potentially damaging to the rural community, he told about 200 people at a meeting in Ashburton.

He is wary of new rules without factoring in the potential economic impact.

“You can only get sustainable, enduring outcomes if farmers can see a way they can farm to their limits.

“Economic, social and environmental implications are all perspectives that need to be in communications.

“That’s why we are pushing back very hard and will do if we are in government after September next year.”   . . 

Fonterra wants change to water rules – Sudesh Kissun:

Fonterra wants the Government to remove suggested maximum required levels of nitrogen and phosphorous in streams.

In its submission on the Government’s Action of Healthy Waterways proposal, Fonterra says it “strongly opposes” some of the maximum required levels for dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) and dissolved reactive phosphorus (DRP).

Farm Source Group director Richard Allen says the discussion document does not contain sufficient economic analysis to justify the proposed bottom line values.

Fonterra believes that in-stream bottom lines should only be used where there is a direct link to the outcomes sought. . .

‘Some mud needs to be thrown’ – farmer at Fonterra AGM :

Fonterra shareholders are frustrated and want accountability after turbulent times for the country’s biggest enterprise.

About 200 farmers gathered in Invercargill for the dairy giant’s annual general meeting.

The co-op recently posted a $605 million loss for the last financial year, and didn’t pay dividends to shareholders.

Farmer shareholders acknowledged that today was going to be tough for Fonterra’s leaders during an Q and A session. . .

Breeders boost eating quality – Neal Wallace:

Breeders are responding to customers’ desires and positioning the sheep farmers for the day when processors start grading meat for its eating qualities. Neal Wallace reports.

Meat processors don’t recognise eating quality yet but a group of ram breeders is preparing for when they do.

Andrew Tripp from Nithdale Station in Southland is involved in the South Island genomic calibration project, which uses DNA testing to let breeders predict terminal sire rams likely to produce offspring with meat that has superior qualities of tenderness and juiciness.

Other partners in the project include Beef + Lamb Genetics, Pamu, AgResearch, Focus Genetics, Kelso, the Premier Suftex group, the Southern Suffolk group and Beltex NZ. . . 

A blaze of yellow – Nigel Malthus:

Several thousand hectares of South Island farmland is a blaze of yellow as the annual rapeseed crop welcomes the spring.

Cropping farmer Warren Darling is one whose display regularly wows the public, since his farm straddles State Highway One just south of Timaru. His 120ha of rape is at “peak flower” and he expects to harvest at the end of January.

Darling has been growing the crop for about 12 years, along with wheat and barley.

He is now also trying sunflowers, beans and industrial hemp, in an effort to find compatible crops to move to a four-year rotation. . .

Busy music career gathers speed – Alice Scott:

Farmer’s wife, teacher, mother of twin boys, fledgling musician and all while recovering from brain surgery … it’s fair to say Casey Evans hasn’t been taking things easy over the last few years.

Casey moved to husband Rhys’ family farm near Owaka just under three years ago and things have been moving rapidly since, as her country music career begins to gain momentum and she is about to set off on a Somewhere Back Road music tour, raising funds to produce her first solo album.

It is just over a year since Casey underwent surgery to extend the size of her skull and release the pressure on her cerebellum and brain stem tissue which was pushing against the hole at base of her skull. For years Casey said she has experienced chronic fatigue and headaches which she attributed to “a few too many” horse falls. Being pregnant with twins, the symptoms compounded and Casey blacked out.

“It was then they did a scan and diagnosed the problem.” . . 

EcoScapes: Stunning views, mental massages and the country’s coolest cinema – Brook Sabin:

I’ve come up with a great concept: the mental massage.

Let me explain. It’s a crazy time to be a human: we’re bombarded with so much information, we’re expected to do more than ever, and we’re all feeling, well, a little bit tired. 

So, you’ll like this next bit: it’s time for a mental massage. I’m talking about a little holiday that slows the heartbeat. That relaxes the muscles. That gives your brain a break. 

And, boy, I think I’ve found it. 

It’s a luxury pod in the mountains, where you can sit back in bed and stare at the Southern Alps. And with the flick of a button, the room transforms into the country’s coolest cinema – all to enjoy with just one other person. . . 


Ice cream does make me happy

November 8, 2019

Does ice cream make you happy?

The Free Speech Coalition says it is crazy overreach by the Advertising Standards Authority to order a take down of an ice cream sign that includes the apparently irresponsible claim that “ice cream makes you happy”. 

Free Speech Coalition spokesman Stephen Franks says, “Talk about creaming it. These clipboard zealots are surely whipping up work if this is what they need to focus on. The Advertising Standards Authority is supposed to be about protecting consumers about misleading claims – not moral pontification about issues such as ice cream waist lines and Kiwi summer quenchers.”

“These people’s head will explode when they read the byline on Red Bull ads. But with today’s nutty decision, most Kiwis would probably cheer at that.”

Rights of free speech should be no less assured just because it is ‘commercial speech’. It is reassuring that the Advertising Standards Board is presently not a government authority. But its moralising is still adding to threats to traditional freedoms.”

Streets which makes the ice cream the sign advertises said:

. . .the statement “ice cream makes you happy” was a “puffery” statement — an “exaggerated, fanciful or vague statement that no reasonable person could possibly treat seriously or find misleading”. . .

I beg to differ, it isn’t fanciful.

Ice cream was a constant of my childhood Sundays.

My mother beat the unsweetened condensed milk until it was thick and creamy, added sugar then slowly beat in gelatine before pouring the mixture into two trays and put them into the freezer before we went to church.

Bought ice cream for dessert was a very occasional treat.

Cone ice creams were almost as infrequent – bought at half time when we went to the pictures or when we stopped at Evensdale for petrol on the way to visit family in Dunedin.

My favourite was hokey pokey and I perfected licking it slowly enough to last the half hour or so to the city.

When we were children we were sometimes offered ice cream or sweets, but not both.

I suspect that is why I now favour goody gumdrops, which is ice cream with sweets.

But whatever the flavour, a cold one on a hot day; a scoop or two accompanying berries or stone fruit for summer dessert or cooling winter puddings like apple crumble and chocolate sinker; or just when I feel like a treat, ice cream hits my happy spot.

I’m not suggesting that it could treat a mental illness, nor do I agree with the complainant who said that “ice cream makes you happy” promoted an unhealthy relationship with food.

A little of what I fancy now and then does make me happy and at times what I fancy is ice cream.

So too do most others who reacted to the Stuff survey:

The grinch who complained needs to take a chill pill, or better still a a scoop or two of ice cream, preferably in a cone because it really does taste better when licked than spooned.


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