Town-country split needs fixing – Rob Hewett:
March 2020 in New Zealand saw a seismic change in the economic landscape.
Covid 19 here, there and everywhere. For some, the change is likely permanent. Who’d want to have shares in an airline?
Meanwhile in agriculture, the issues of environment, sustainability, emissions, to name a few, have not evaporated. Instead, they are likely to be more important than ever.
Covid-19-disrupted food supply chains made people think carefully about where their food was coming from, probably for the first time in their lives. . .
NZ’s primary exports held up well in April, again proving the country’s farming industries are sustaining the economy despite many sectors being stricken by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Almost coincidentally, a UMR probe of public opinion about farming revealed a sharp swing in perception.
Instead of the negativity that had been undermining morale – particularly in the dairy industry, triggered by anti-farming lobby groups which conjured up the slogan “dirty dairying” to turn urban opinion against the industry – the UMR polling showed attitudes have tilted deeper into positive territory. . .
Synlait has dropped its forecast milk price for the season about to end and is predicting of a lower opening price for next season.
The dairy company is forecasting $7.05 per kilo of milk solids, down from $7.25.
This is slightly below Fonterra’s recent forecast of $7.10 to $7.30.
Synlait’s opening forecast for the 2020/21 season has been set at $6.00, which is in the middle-range of Fonterra’s forecast of $5.40 to $6.90.
In the 2018/19 season the company paid $6.40 kgMS to its 280 farmer suppliers. . .
Sanford Limited (NZX: SAN) has reported statutory net profit after tax (NPAT) for the first half of its 2020 financial year of $19.0 million, 17% behind last year’s result of $22.9 million for the same period. Adjusted (underlying) Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) of $23.2 million for the six months to 31 March, 2020. This represents a 29% decrease on adjusted EBIT from the same period last year ($32.6 million) or a 16% decrease on a comparable basis, when excluding the pelagic business which Sanford sold in March 2019. Total revenue was $245.5 million, a 7% decrease on the same period in 2019 ($265.0 million).
Sanford is New Zealand’s largest and oldest seafood company and has a diverse range of interests across fishing and aquaculture. In recent years, it has made a strategic shift into higher value products such as Greenshell mussel powders and high end branded salmon. . .
Tyson Foods, the largest meat processor in the United States, has transformed its facilities across the country since legions of its workers started getting sick from the novel coronavirus. It has set up on-site medical clinics, screened employees for fevers at the beginning of their shifts, required the use of face coverings, installed plastic dividers between stations and taken a host of other steps to slow the spread.
Despite those efforts, the number of Tyson employees with the coronavirus has exploded from less than 1,600 a month ago to more than 7,000 today, according to a Washington Post analysis of news reports and public records.
What has happened at Tyson — and in the meat industry overall — shows how difficult it is to get the nation back to normal, even in essential fields such as food processing. .
With the current post-lockdown focus to ‘buy local’, the NZ Forest Sector Forum is posing the question – why isn’t New Zealand consuming more New Zealand wood and wood products?
According to MPI, approximately two-thirds of New Zealand wood is exported. Almost $6.93 billion was exported from NZ in 2018-19. On the flipside, New Zealand imported over $1.5 billion worth of wood products in 2019. So why are we importing a huge amount of wood products when we grow so much ourselves?
Wood products cover products that come from the woody part of the tree, and can be anything from logs to wood chips, sawn timber and railway sleepers to wood pulp. Uses for wood and wood products are constantly being reinvented, from multi-story construction to soft and absorbent toilet paper. . .