Word of the day

18/10/2021

Eschatology – the part of theology concerned with death, judgement, and the final destiny of the soul and of humankind; a branch of theology concerned with the final events in the history of the world or of humankind; belief or a doctrine concerning the ultimate or final things, such as death, the destiny of humanity, the Second Coming, or the Last Judgment; the doctrine of the last thing.


Sowell says

18/10/2021


Rural round-up

18/10/2021

Sector mulls staff vaccination options – Neal Wallace:

The meat industry wants mandatory vaccination of processing staff against covid-19, but says it requires Government help to make that happen.

Meat Industry Association (MIA) chief executive Sirma Karapeeva says the industry is high-risk and the Government should extend the same protection to it as the recently announced mandatory vaccination for health and education sector employees.

“At present, our industry is unable to make vaccination a mandatory requirement for employees,” Karapeeva said.

“Although processors could look at making vaccination a health and safety requirement at plants, this is a difficult and complex process and would require companies to undertake an assessment of the different risks of vaccinated people versus unvaccinated people.”  . . 

This sister-run business aims to show people a more sustainable way to eat meat – Carly Thomas:

For the Macdonald sisters, the wild hills of their childhood provided the perfect launching pad for their business, Middlehurst Delivered. These days, working out of a converted garage in Rangiora, Sophie and Lucy are busy showing just how successful a family business can be with a bit of creative thinking.

When Lucy and Sophie Macdonald were kids, Tuesdays were town days. Growing up on Middlehurst Station meant their childhood playground spanned the mighty Kaikōura Ranges – snow-capped in winter, wide and sparse in summer, always changing beneath the big skies and rolling clouds.

Getting to head into town, with all its hustle and bustle, was a real treat. “I remember begging Mum and Dad to move us to town,” says Sophie, 28, laughing.

“It’s only when you get older that you realise what you had. This place is incredible, and I appreciate it now.” . .

Piritaha. Side By Side – Jacqui GIbson:

Twenty-two years ago, Emily Crofoot, 66, and her husband, Anders, moved their family from a 300 acre farm near New York to 7,400 acre Castlepoint Station in coastal Wairarapa. Her goal? To live in a country where farming really mattered. Today, her daughter, Sarah, 30,  has picked up the farming baton, while carving out a vision of her own.

Emily: Was I new to New Zealand when my husband, Anders, and our two children, David and Sarah, moved to Castlepoint in 1998? Not at all. My grandparents and parents had travelled here in the sixties, and my first visit was with my family in 1973, when I was eighteen. I just fell in love with New Zealand. I could see that farmers here were truly valued and were hugely innovative. 

That Kiwi spirit of innovation really appealed to me. In New York State, where I grew up, farming was more traditional and urban sprawl was encroaching on the area. Our farm had been in the family since 1809, but things were tough going because of predators and the extremes in weather.  

As I became more and more interested in farming, New Zealand was the place I looked to for inspiration. In my twenties, I returned here to help out on different sheep and beef farms. I came again a few years later to complete a shearing course in Tolaga Bay. I even applied to study agriculture at Lincoln College – now Lincoln University – but this was in the days before they accepted international students, so I didn’t get in.  . .

Small feet stay warm thanks to Amuri Basin entrepreneur – Country Life:

Tracey Topp started making merino socks for children 16 years ago. Now her Cosy Toes brand has expanded to adult socks and woollen clothing that has buyers all around the world.

Sixteen years ago North Canterbury entrepreneur Tracey Topp had a lightbulb moment. She’d been out shopping for her two young boys.

“I couldn’t find any woollen baby socks, there were no wool socks in any of the shops. All I could find were little acrylic or cotton socks imported from China!” she says.

Tracey found a small knitting mill with a sock making machine suitable for merino yarn. . .

Medicinal herb project gets underway in Taranaki – Catherine Groenestein:

Growers and gardeners around Taranaki are taking part in a project that could spawn a new industry – medicinal herb production.

Shonagh Hopkirk, who is president of the Stratford Herb Society and North Island vice president of the New Zealand Herb Federation, is collecting information on medicinal herbs that could be grown commercially.

“The majority of organic herbs used in quantity in New Zealand are imported, and there is a need for high quality, organic New Zealand-grown herbs,” she said.

“I think it would be fantastic if we could develop our own medicinal herb industry in Taranaki.” . .

 

Farmer is an artist first and foremost – Stephen Burns:

“I’m an artist first before I became a farmer,” Michelle Chibnall replied when asked about her career procession; although she did admit, with the ewes lambing at the time of interview in September, to being a farmer before having time to apply her talent to the paper.

She was sitting in her studio in a back room of the house sited on the small farm west of Narrandera and running alongside the Yanco Creek, where various unframed paintings and sketches adorn the walls and easel.

Naturally, the rooms and hallways of her home are also adorned with finished portraits of family and beloved animals.

Michelle shares the farm with her husband Peter, a truck driver, and a flock of Australian White ewes share equal billing with the Quarter Horses among the river red gums. . . 


Yes Sir Humphrey

18/10/2021


Which is more important?

18/10/2021

Health Minister Andrew LIttle’s big fees are costing ICU beds:

The $1.4 million spent by Minister of Health Andrew Little on consultants working on his ill-conceived restructure of the health system over just two months could have paid for two new, fully-resourced ICU beds, says National’s Health spokesperson Dr Shane Reti.

“In July and August alone, Andrew Little paid Ernst & Young consultants enough money to add a new ICU bed for each month.

“The running tally of consultancy fees alone for the Minister’s vanity project so far now stands more than $7.2 million – a staggering figure when we consider the dire shortage of funding for ICU beds and other facilities vital to the Covid response.

There’s also a dire shortage of funding for other healths services in hospitals and the community, from ante-natal right through to end of life care.

“District health boards with low ICU capacity, such as Lakes, Tairāwhiti and Northland, would have a much greater safety net for the Covid response if they had just a few extra ICU beds.

“But, even now, it’s all a bit too late for a Minister who built no new ICU beds in Auckland in 15 months, failed to fast-track new nursing staff and brought in a pay freeze that actually drove ICU nurses to Australia.

“Andrew Little may argue the toss on the numbers but he can’t deny that he declined a request from Auckland DHB to use $6 million in leftover funding to build negative pressure rooms and then ended up building them in the middle of a pandemic.

“At the end of the day, Andrew Little’s consultants can’t put up a drip or run a ventilator, and that is what New Zealanders need right now.”

Prioritising funding for consultants rather than urgently needed ICU beds is even worse whenintensive care unit occupancy rates in district health board areas with large Māori populations were at capacity even before Covid and the current Delta outbreak.

Which is more important – consultants working on restructuring or health services which were over-stretched and under-resourced before Covid-19 hit?

If there is ever a good time to radically restructure a health system it’s not in the middle of a pandemic when the focus and the funds are so desperately needed on the front line of health services and the people who provide them.


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