Rural living: the good, the bad and the glorious – Nicky Berger:
I never wanted to be a farmer. Growing up on a small sheep and beef farm north of Auckland, I spent many sunny afternoons in the “Pooh Bear Forest” below our house, and others learning how to handle wool from eternally patient shearers.
But I never believed it was my destiny to grow food. Instead, I spent my teenage years imagining myself working in one of the skyscrapers we would see on occasional trips into the city. When I was old enough, off to the city I went.
However, the unexpected death of my dad one sunny evening in 2004 changed everything.
Sitting at the kitchen table in my family home the following morning, I stared in wonder at ute after ute coming down our driveway, past our house, and heading over to the woolshed. . .
Recent publicity surrounding intensive winter grazing in Southland has been unhelpful, the regional council says.
Images of distressed animals deep in mud have circulated on social media in recent weeks.
But Southland Regional Council chief executive Rob Phillips said some of them were not from this winter and many appeared to be taken outside of Southland.
“We want to follow up and address any poor practice, but when those circulating the images aren’t prepared to tell us where the properties are, it lets everyone down and certainly doesn’t help to improve the situation, he said. . .
Farmers a cut above DOC in caring for Crown land – Jacqui Dean:
There’s some people who are firm in the belief that Crown land can only be properly looked after if it’s under Department of Conservation (DOC) control. In my opinion, that view is misguided and fails to recognise the state of vast tracts of land across the South Island.
I’ve spent the first half of this year visiting Crown pastoral leaseholders in the South Island to better understand the implications of the Crown Pastoral Land Reform Bill that’s making its way through Parliament.
This piece of legislation is touted by its proponents as a way to improve environmental outcomes. It puts an end to tenure review and places heavy-handed restrictions on the most basic of farming activities on crown lease land.
During my visits to these rugged and remote areas I’ve been able to compare high country land being farmed under a pastoral lease with nearby land under DOC administration. . .
The immense turnout to yesterday’s nationwide protests by the rural sector sent a clear message to the Government, they are fed up with Labour penalising them at every turn, Leader of the Opposition Judith Collins says.
“Yesterday farmers up and down New Zealand told the Government they wouldn’t be sitting down and taking the hits Labour is dishing out. All National MPs were with them, showing our support and how much we value the work our farmers do.
“Farmers helped New Zealand get through Covid-19, and Labour is repaying them through unworkable freshwater regulations, failing to deal with serious workforce shortages and now it’s hitting them in the wallet with a Ute Tax.
“The rural sector has rightly had enough. They’re not alone though, almost every other New Zealander is being hit in the back pocket through new taxes, rent increases and costs on businesses. . .
Malaysian firm to convert Southland farm into forestry block – Shawn McAvinue:
A Malaysian company has been given consent to buy a nearly 460ha sheep and beef farm in Western Southland.
The Overseas Investment Office gave the consent to the 100% Malaysian-owned company Pine Plantations Private Ltd to buy the farm – near Tuatapere – from vendors Ayson and Karen Gill for $4 million.
The consent states the company intends to develop about 330ha of the land into a commercial forest, principally in pine trees.
Planting was intended to start in 2021-22, for the trees to be harvested in up to 30 years. . .
City kids go bush – Sally Blundell:
It’s called real world learning: pine nut pesto, bush tea and home kill. Bush Farm Education is taking kids out of the classroom and into nature.
The classroom is a place of puddles and hay bales, trailers and tractors. Today’s lessons – fire safety, edible mushrooms and the reality of home kill.
“Just imagine if every kid in Ōtautahi Christchurch, or even New Zealand, could have a day a week out on the farm, in nature, learning about it,” says Katie Earle, founder of Bush Farm Education on Lyttelton Harbour. “It would just be incredible.”
Incredible but unlikely. A Sport New Zealand survey in 2019 found that only 7 percent of children and young people aged five–17 met the Ministry of Health guidelines of at least one hour of moderate to vigorous activity a day. Recent research by Ara Institute of Canterbury into education outside the classroom found a third of schools struggle to get students outside, citing time constraints, added paperwork, education regulations and health and safety rules. . .
Softwood lumber has been in high demand in the US and Europe throughout 2021. The limited supply resulted in temporary price surges to record high levels during the spring, followed by substantial declines in early summer. The outlook for lumber demand is likely to be strong worldwide in the coming decade in most world regions, including North America and Asia. Both these regions are consistently dependent on imported wood.
Few countries in the world can significantly expand lumber exports, and Europe will play an increasingly important role as a wood supplier in the future. Tighter lumber markets will impact not just the sawmilling industry but also forest owners, pulp companies, wood panel manufacturers, and pellet producers.
The latest Focus Report: Global Lumber Markets – The Growing Role of European Lumber from Wood Resources International (WRI) and O’Kelly Acumen examines the forces driving the tightness of global lumber markets, including the demand outlook in the US and China and the supply potential from Europe, Russia, and other regions. It also analyses the possible implications of near-term changes in the lumber markets for all players in the value chain. . .