Doyenne – the most respected or prominent woman in a particular field; the oldest, most experienced, and often most respected woman involved in a particular type of work; a woman who is the senior member, as in age or rank, of a group, class, profession, etc.
Australian singer and feminist icon, Helen Reddy has died:
The Melbourne-born Reddy, whose trailblazing life was dramatised in the recent bio-pic I Am Woman, was regarded as the queen of 1970s pop with her hits including Delta Dawn, Angie Baby, Leave Me Alone (Ruby Red Dress) and Ain’t No Way To Treat A Lady.
After arriving in New York as a 24-year-old single mother of a three-year-old with just over $US200 to her name, she overcame years of struggle in the US to become the world’s top-selling female singer in 1973 and 1974.
She won a Grammy for I Am Woman, had her own weekly prime-time television variety show and branched into an acting career on screen and stage that included a Golden Globe nomination for Airport 1975.
The stirring anthem that became her best-known hit turned her into a feminist icon. . .
Storm reminiscent of 2010 mega-storm that killed hundreds of thousands of lambs, say Fed Farmers – Bonnie Flaws & Rachael Kelly:
Farmers in the Otago and Southland regions of the South Island say any lambs born overnight on Monday could not have survived.
Federated Farmers Southland vice-president Bernadette Hunt said it was beginning to look a lot like 2010, when a nasty storm followed by days of rain left an estimated 250,000 to one million lambs dead.
“Before this event started, the province was already wet, now there’s this ongoing event with snow and wind, and there’s a wet forecast to follow.
“Farmers were well-prepared, but as this drags on, the sheltered areas are turning to mud, making conditions awful for lambs and ewes. Coupled with the windchill, this is tough even on lambs that are several days old, and on ewes whose milk production will be affected,” she said. . .
Think rural mental health while drafting policies – Sudesh Kissun:
The effects of government policies on rural communities and farmer wellbeing must be considered when drafting them, says Federated Farmers dairy section chair Wayne Langford.
“As we move from a quantity to quality form of agriculture, having a clear mind is key and will result in amazing increases in productivity, profitability and passion for farming,” he told Dairy News.
Langford made the comments to mark the Mental Health Awareness Week in New Zealand last week. He joined other sector leaders in urging rural mental health to be a priority.
Langford, who farms in Golden Bay, says mental health support for farmers and others working in agriculture has improved immensely over the last ten years. However, he says there is an opportunity to increase training through inter-personal skills and personality profiling. . .
Tough times called for tough decisions – Sudesh Kissun:
Retiring Fonterra chairman John Monaghan steps down from the cooperative’s board, satisfied at leaving behind a business in good stead.
Monaghan took over as chairman in July 2018, right in the middle of Fonterra’s financial struggles and just months before the departure of then-chief executive Theo Spierings.
After two years of financial losses, Fonterra this month announced a $659 million annual profit, turning around a $605m loss the previous year.
Regarded as a safe pair of hands, Monaghan –backed by a management team led by chief executive Miles Hurrell – steered the co-op back to profitability.
Complex family legacy – and name – continued on farm – Mary-Jo Tohill:
Scottish lairds and ladies, ancient deeds, unimaginable wealth, the slave trade.
The Glassford family history reads like an episode of Who Do You Think You Are?, the British genealogy documentary series on the BBC.
Central Otago farmer Antony William Gordon Glassford chuckles at the suggestion that his descent from a Scottish tobacco lord could make him “Tony the Toff”. No silk frockcoats for this fifth-generation New Zealander, who farms near Omakau.
Tony Glassford’s family have farmed Dougalston, the name taken from his ancestors’ long vanished Scottish estate, at Drybread for 156 years. They have been recognised twice in the Century Farm Awards, which is given to properties in continuous ownership for 100 years, or in their case for more than 150 years. . .
FarmIQ is pleased to announce the appointment of Will Noble in the role of Chief Executive Officer, starting in late September 2020.
Mr Noble is an experienced strategic and operational leader. He is a strong all-rounder with a background in a range of areas such as digital, software-as-a-service, niche market, management consulting, advisory, and project management. His most recent role was as the Client Services Director at Fujitsu New Zealand.
FarmIQ’s Chairman John Quirk says, “Mr Noble is a customer-orientated New Zealand business leader with an entrepreneurial spirit and solutions-focused approach. Will has demonstrated he can transform organisations to achieve growth in complex environments through a focus on innovation, customers and his team. . .
Farmers are being warned that poorly maintained tripod tanks are a serious health and safety risk to fuel users.
The safety alert from the Fuel Distributors Industry Safety Committee and WorkSafe New Zealand follows a recent incident where a fuel tanker driver was seriously injured on a farm where a tripod overhead tank collapsed while he was filling it.
The root cause of the collapse was significant rust corrosion on one of the tank legs. Farm implements close to the tank also contributed to the driver’s injuries.
“No farmer wants to be responsible for an incident like this happening on their farm,” says Al McCone, WorkSafe Agriculture Lead. . .
National is promising to do more to stamp out corruption:
A National Government will back the Serious Fraud Office to do more to stamp out corruption, National Party Leader Judith Collins says.
“New Zealand’s most successful crime fighting agency will get the resources it needs to deliver on its stated role as the ‘lead law enforcement agency for investigating and prosecuting serious financial crime, including bribery and corruption.’
“National will double the Serious Fraud Office’s budget, from its present total budget for the 2020/21 financial year of $12.7 million to $25 million a year.”
Ms Collins says it doesn’t make sense for the lead agency battling fraud, bribery and corruption, with the greatest legal powers to uncover those things, to be playing second fiddle to other government agencies working in this area.
“The SFO will continue to work alongside the likes of the NZ Police’s Financial Intelligence Unit, but it will have the funding it needs to do the job it was established in 1990 to do.
“The SFO has statutory powers that other New Zealand crime fighting agencies do not, including powers to compel the production of information and to require witnesses and suspects to answer any questions put to them without the right to silence. But these powers aren’t being given enough opportunity to be used.
“The SFO takes very few prosecutions, not because there isn’t fraud, bribery and corruption in New Zealand, but because the office doesn’t have the resources to do its job properly. The office needs more investigators and more resources to work with its domestic and international counterparts.”
Ms Collins acknowledges New Zealand is regarded as one of the least corrupt countries in the world, but says that’s no reason for complacency.
“The SFO says the threats to our reputation as a relatively corruption free country ‘have probably never been greater today than any other time in our history.’
“National agrees, and we’ll resource the office properly to do the job New Zealanders expect it to do.
“In a way it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy; if you aren’t searching for something you’re unlikely to find it.”
New Zealand is usually at or near the top of lists for less corruption but being less corrupt than other countries doesn’t mean we have no corruption.
Maintaining our reputation and stamping out corruption must be taken seriously, and financed properly.
Ms Collins says National will also change the office’s name from the Serious Fraud Office to the Serious Fraud and Anti-corruption Agency.
“We would change the office’s name because we think New Zealand needs to better understand the types of crime fighting it is responsible for.
“Over many years the SFO has developed a reputation for targeting the private sector, in part due to its self-publicised focus on ‘white collar crime.’ Many people think this means the big end of town, but that’s far from the office’s only focus.
“We want people to know the office’s mandate and focus goes well beyond the world of investment, accounting and banking. It also tackles fraud, bribery and corruption in local government, community entities and iwi trusts.
“It prosecutes wrongdoing in infrastructure contracting, project tendering and central Government, including ministries, Crown agencies and political parties.
“In many ways corruption in the regions has the greatest impact on New Zealanders, by eroding small communities’ trust in institutions they deserve to believe in, and depriving them of resources they desperately need.
“We think the name the Serious Fraud and Anti-corruption Agency makes it much clearer what the office’s business is, and why anyone thinking about trying to circumvent the laws of New Zealand should be aware that an agency exists to stamp out that behaviour.”
By a happy coincidence this announcement came yesterday when the SFO announced it has filed charges against two people involved in the New Zealand First Foundation investigation.
The SFO has filed a charge of ‘Obtaining by Deception’ against two defendants in the New Zealand First Foundation electoral funding case. The charges were filed on 23 September.
The defendants have interim name suppression and so cannot be named or identified at this time. We note, however, that neither defendant is a Minister, sitting MP, or candidate in the upcoming election (or a member of their staff), or a current member of the New Zealand First party.
The SFO has no further comment.
The announcement comes just in time.
The SFO said it would make an announcement before the election. Overseas voting begins today and early voting opens on Saturday.
The announcement would have been a little earlier had Winston Peters not taken the SFO to court:
. . . An SFO spokesman said NZ First brought proceedings against the office to stop it issuing a media release, on September 23.
The court ruled in favour of the SFO, the spokesman said, and released a statement on Tuesday when the timeframe for appealing the decision lapsed.
The statement was amended after the court challenge, due to the upcoming election, “to reflect the categories of people that were not charged”, he said. . .
That it has taken the SFO so long to file charges supports National’s policy to better resource it.
Spoliation – the action of ruining or destroying something; the action of taking goods or property from somewhere by violent means; the act, or an instance of plundering and despoiling; ruination; the act of illegally seizing goods or land.
Southland’s farmers are being encouraged to drive their (road registered) tractors or utes to a ‘town and country hui’ being organised to inform people about the new freshwater regulations – and townies are invited too.
Southland Federated Farmers and the Southland Chamber of Commerce are hosting the hui at Queen’s Park in Invercargill on October 9, to ‘’bring town and country together over something that affects us all,’’ Southland Federated Farmers president Geoff Young said.
“This isn’t just about farmers. We all live off the land, so this will bring town and country together to highlight some of the concerns farmers have about the new freshwater rules are, and what the ramifications are for us all.” . .
In the wake of Covid-19, New Zealand should be focusing on industries that can help drive our economic recovery and growth over time.
While some of our key sectors have been hit hard, the dairy industry, and wider food sector, is well-positioned to continue to deliver for Kiwis through Covid-19 and help our economy get back on its feet.
But like all sectors, particularly at the moment, the dairy industry needs to keep evolving to meet new challenges head-on and maximise new opportunities.
With Kiwis relying on the primary sector to help lead them out of this crisis, agritech has a vital role to play. . .
$50m commitment not enough for farmers — National:
Labour’s $50 million commitment to support integrated farm planning will do little for farmers, claims National’s ag spokesperson David Bennett.
He says Labour doesn’t back farmers and today’s announcement will do little to ease burden of meeting regulations.
“Today’s promises around farm environment plans will do little to alleviate the individual farm cost and won’t necessarily mean that there will be a streamlined process for all farmers,” says Bennett.
“Labour can’t be trusted to deliver reasonable and rational rules when farmers know the true intentions of their party.“. . .
Cow-shy hairdresser now cutting it – Yvonne O’Hara:
Before she met her dairy farmer partner, hairdresser Ashleigh Sinclair did not own a pair of gumboots and was scared of cows.
Now she co-owns 20.
She spends most weekends with Clint Cummings on his family’s 106ha, 230-cow Wyndham dairy farm.
“I started off being petrified of cows, and going out on the farm was a challenge for me, but now I’ve seen how friendly they are and I love spending time with them. . .
Scholarship opportunity firms up career – Yvonne O’Hara:
Business confidence has plummeted:
The New Zealand Herald’s 2020 Election Survey has been released with top business leaders saying New Zealand’s Covid-19 recovery is in peril – and they want a decisive role with Government in the country’s future.
The annual boardroom barometer of 165 CEOs and high-profile directors has business confidence at the lowest it’s ever been in the survey’s 19-year history.
When asked to rate their level of optimism in the New Zealand economy the CEOs surveyed collectively scored it a 1.36 out of 5.
These are bigger businesses and predominantly urban.
I doubt if farmers are any more confident given the fear and uncertainty around added costs and complexities that are being imposed on primary production.
Westpac CEO David McLean says the future has never been so uncertain, but that means that the need for crisp and clear policies and plans has never been greater.
“We need to see pathways mapped, not just for how to escape from the current Covid-19 crisis, but to take us toward a better future by addressing some of the big challenges we face beyond Covid-19, such as increasing our productivity and tackling climate change,” said McLean.
Many, like Mainfreight’s Don Braid, question Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s heavy reliance on Government bureaucrats for advice and execution and her apparent unwillingness to listen to the private sector for ideas.
“There are many willing to devote time, energy and ideas in areas that allow New Zealand to find the right environment to operate in a post-lockdown economy,” said Braid.
The New Zealand Herald’s Mood of the Boardroom 2020 Election Year survey, taken in association with BusinessNZ, provides an in-depth assessment of CEO opinion at what is the most concerning time in the survey’s long history.
“It’s heartening that a record number of CEOs took part in the 2020 survey against a background of the Covid-19 pandemic. Optimism may be at the lowest levels seen in the survey’s history, but the CEOs’ responses demonstrated their own commitment to turning the economy around,” said says Mood of the Boardroom executive editor and NZ Herald’s Head of Business Content, Fran O’Sullivan.
With the General Election just weeks away business leaders are looking for more from both Labour and National.
Deloitte CEO Thomas Pippos points to tax policy being a key issue.
“Though Labour’s proposal to increase the highest personal tax rate doesn’t impact on the majority, National has upped the ante by helicoptering in temporary tax relief across the board to stimulate economic growth. Tax therefore promises to be a very complicated and emotive topic, that will either be centre stage this election or not far from it,’’ says Pippos.
BusinessNZ CEO Kirk Hope said Labour’s economic policy response to Covid has underpinned the economy in a challenging time.
“However, the long-term plans are less well understood. They will need to do a hard sell. National’s plans are slightly more pro-business. But both parties need to talk about how quantitative easing enables them to maximise a reduction in borrowing costs to help grow the economy.” . .
You can read more about the Mood From the Boardroom at the NZ Herald here.
Confidence isn’t helped by the fact that Labour hasn’t released its fiscal plan:
The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is calling on the Labour Party to immediately release their fiscal plan, so it can be subjected to the same scrutiny as the National Party’s fiscal plan.
Union spokesperson Louis Houlbrooke said: “The National plan was found to have a few holes after analysis by Labour and independent economists. The Nats admitted to one $4 billion mistake but denied another. It is healthy that major spending plans are put under intense investigation before an election.”
“That is why the Taxpayers’ Union is calling on Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to immediately release Labour’s own fiscal plan. She has told the nation that her numbers ‘stack up’. That clearly means their plan is finished, fact checked, and ready to go. There is no need to wait for a September Treasury data release to unveil the plan – the Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Update (PREFU) was reported a little over a week ago. All the fiscal data is there.”
“Let people like Paul Goldsmith, David Seymour, Cameron Bagrie, and your humble Taxpayers’ Union check that Labour’s numbers really do stack up. Then, taxpayers can make an informed choice about who should manage our economy in a post-COVID recession.”
It’s not just a fiscal plan that hasn’t been released, Labour keeps telling us it has a plan for recovery but has given scant details.
Uncertainty is one of the bigger drags on business confidence.
That matters because businesses that lack confidence at best don’t invest and don’t hire more staff, at worst they retrench and make staff redundant.
That so much about Covid-19 and how it will impact the country and the world is uncertain, and to a large degree uncontrollable, makes it even more important that politicians are upfront about their plans and what they can control.
Circumjacent – lying adjacent on all sides; lying around; surrounding.
Farmers on board with environmental fairness but want time and fairness – Liz McDonald and Henry Cooke:
Canterbury farmers want politicians to stop painting them as climate change villains, listen to their needs and allow them more time to boost environmental standards.
The Labour, National, Act and Green parties have all released agriculture policies in the past few days as they vie for the government benches in October.
National’s agriculture policy, released on Thursday, promises to “review or repeal” the Labour Government’s nine freshwater regulations introduced this year, and remove the possibility of agriculture entering the Emissions Trading Scheme in 2022.
It also promised to allow skilled and seasonal workers to enter New Zealand with a fast-tracked primary sector visa. . .
Legalising of recreational cannabis could increase health and safety risks for the primary sector, say wary employers.
The sector already has one of the highest workplace accident and death rates in the country, and leaders say it could be another risk if the referendum gets support on 17 October.
Chris Lewis from Federated Farmers said while the organisation doesn’t have a stance on the referendum it does have concerns about the health and safety implications if the bill is passed into law.
He said farming already has a high accident rate around livestock and machinery, and workers need to be aware of what is around them without being impaired. . .
Artificial breeding technicians (AB techs) across the country have begun rolling up their sleeves in order to get millions of dairy cows pregnant over the next six months. Their role is critical in producing the next generation of animals and ensuring New Zealand’s hugely valuable milk supply continues.
Last year LIC, which employs around 900 AB techs between September and March, oversaw the insemination of over four million cows. While undertaking this work, the cooperative is also seeking new recruits to train ahead of next season.
Once trained many return year-after-year including the McCarthy family. Paul McCarthy first trained with LIC in 1978 as a 20-year-old. After nearly 40 years he has inseminated thousands of cows while running a 134ha dairy farm in Galatea in the eastern Bay of Plenty with his wife Johanna. . .
Bees are an essential component of a strong agricultural sector. They support New Zealand’s $6 billion horticultural industry by pollinating food crops as well as producing a multitude of honey-based products.
Despite recent reports of declining bee numbers due to pesticide use, figures released by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) show that beehive numbers have increased three-fold since 2005. According to its apiculture monitoring programme, hive numbers reached over 918,000 in 2019, up from below 300,000 fourteen years ago. The numbers have consistently been on an upward trend since then, with the latest figures showing a four percent increase on the previous year.
Independent scientific research included in the report concluded that the destructive varroa mite is the main cause of bee losses. . .
Southland meat processor Blue Sky Pastures is looking to new pastures by expanding its business, launching its namesake Blue Sky Butchery.
Bringing southern lamb to the digital fingertips of all New Zealanders, Blue Sky Butchery is a completely online store where users will be able to purchase the finest and freshest cuts of Southland lamb, delivered overnight nation-wide.
Many cuts of this New Zealand-favourite will be available, including Frenched racks, striploin, leg, shoulder, loin chops and mince. . .
Crops will be ploughed under if workers can’t be found – Andrew Miller:
A Bacchus Marsh vegetable grower says her farm will have to plough crops back into the ground, if sufficient workers can’t be found as harvest ramps up.
Rae McFarlane, Boratto Farms, Bacchus Marsh said the business produced fancy lettuce, rocket, parsley and baby spinach.
She said the coronavirus lockdown had hit the restaurant trade hard. . .
The Serious Fraud Office said it would make a decision on the New Zealand First Foundation before the election.
That was in April when the election was to be held last month.
Our EasyVote papers have arrived and early voting starts on Saturday.
Overseas voting begins on Wednesday.
That gives the SFO two days to make public its decision.
If recent polls reflect what will happen at the polls, New Zealand First won’t be in parliament anyway.
But whether or not they are, voters should know what the decision is before voting starts.
If that isn’t possible the SFO should at least give us an update on progress and when a decision will be announced.
Labour policies will add up to $2.8 billion in costs to businesses:
“Jacinda Ardern needs to front up and explain to New Zealanders how much Labour’s policies will hurt the New Zealand, economy National’s Economic Development spokesperson,” Todd McClay says.
“Labour have not shown New Zealand any costing of the economic impact from their recent policy announcements.
“The cost of their policies might not show up in the government’s books, but they will be paid by all New Zealanders – through fewer jobs, lower wage increases and a decline in economic growth.
“So far, Labour has committed to lifting the minimum wage; increasing sick leave requirements; creating another public holiday; and less flexible working agreements.
This won’t only add costs to businesses it will reduce productivity which is already too low.
“The total cost of Labour’s policies could be as much as $2.8 billion per year for New Zealand businesses. What does Labour say the costs are?
“Business NZ said an employee’s absence is currently estimated to cost about $1000 per employee, or $1.8 billion across the economy, will Labour’s policy on sick leave double this?
“Based on previous MBIE estimates of minimum wage increases, raising the minimum wage to $20 will likely cost the economy around $280 million per year.
“An additional public holiday could cost as much as $700 million in extra costs for businesses, based on average wages and the size of the New Zealand workforce.
“The solutions businesses need to grow New Zealand out of our current recession is help with paying the bills, not even higher bills due to Labour’s costly policies.
“New Zealand needs to know what the impact of these policies will be on our weak economy. These policies have consequences.
“Time for some answers.”
These added costs imposed on businesses show Labour is building a barrier to economic recovery:
With businesses failing and unemployment rapidly increasing, Labour’s plans are like throwing petrol on a bonfire, National’s Economic Development spokesperson Todd McClay says.
“Nearly 100,000 small businesses have had to borrow $1.6 billion from the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) just to cover their cashflow under Labour.
“Grant Robertson thinks he can continue to pile costs on businesses while ignoring the real and disastrous impact. Repaying this debt will be even more difficult with Labour’s agenda to raise the cost of doing business.
“Labour’s announcements of a higher minimum wage, a new public holiday and an increased sick leave could cost the economy $2.8 billion per annum.
“These are not small costs that can be easily absorbed. They amount to over $1000 per employee.
“Despite prompting from National on Friday, Labour has been unable to make a case as to why these policies will be good for our weakened economy.
“Labour’s plans will also lead to higher power prices for businesses of over 30 per cent for industrial users.
“Labour’s idea that $5 billion to $10 billion could be spent on a pumped hydro scheme in Central Otago without raising power prices has been described by electricity company executives as ‘dreamland’.
“Labour need to front up with their assessment of the impact these policies are having on the economy.
“These higher costs will affect Kiwis through fewer jobs, lower pay rises and a smaller economy.
“National will create an environment where businesses can grow and prosper. We’re supporting businesses with $10,000 to hire new staff and provide modern, flexible working practices.
“We will work with businesses, not against them, to create more jobs and higher incomes for Kiwis and their families.”
Some commentators say there is little difference between National and Labour.
In some matters they are right, but not when it comes to the economy.
Labour plans to add costs and complexity which will make it more expensive and difficult to employ people and add other costs to business.
In stark contrast National plans to cut red tape and taxes. This will make it easier to employ people and for businesses to invest in themselves and grow.
National is focusing on what matters, Labour has lesser priorities:
Enow – enough.