Word of the day

10/06/2022

Niffle-naffling – the art of looking busy while actually not doing very much at all; dilly-dallying or generally futzing about as a way of ignoring the important stuff.


Sowell says

10/06/2022


Rural round-up

10/06/2022

Dairy prices are rising again but the movement of Fonterra share prices not so cheery for farmers, prompts buy-back plan – Point of Order:

New Zealand’s  dairy   farmers, who  will be  receiving  a  record  payout from  most of  the processing  companies  they have  supplied in the 2021-22 season,  will be  relieved that the  average price rose  again at the latest Fonterra auction, snapping five consecutive falls.

While  demand  from the  China  market  remained relatively weak, other regions stepped in to take up the slack. The GDT price index rose 1.5% to 1359 (the first increase since the March 1 auction when the index hit a record 1593}, a  level  well  above  recent  seasons.

Covid-19 lockdowns in China have disrupted supply chains and weighed on dairy markets, with North Asian buyers recording their fourth-smallest volume of whole milk powder at the latest auction.

NZX dairy insights manager Stuart Davison said South-east Asia took the largest volume of both milk powders, purchasing well over half the total whole milk powder sold, which was the biggest proportion of all, while also purchasing the largest volume of skim milk powder. . .

NZL raising capital to buy two Southland farms -:

New Zealand Rural Land Company (NZL) is tapping shareholders for $20.4 million to fund the acquisition of two dairy farms in Southland.

The company is raising the capital through a rights offer, meaning eligible shareholders would have the right to purchase 1 new share for every 5 shares they own.

The proceeds would help fund NZL’s acquisition of the Argyle Downs Farm (546ha) and Greenhill Farm (366ha) in Southland.

They would have new tenants with initial terms of 11 years and 10 years respectively and would include consumer price index-linked rent reviews. . . 

 

Feds relieved by common sense rural water recommendations :

Federated Farmers sees positives in the report released this week by the Rural Supplies Technical Working Group on water services, in particular rejection of inflexible ‘one size fits all’ approaches to rural supplies.

“Many of the findings raised by the group look sound,” president Andrew Hoggard said.

“The report appears to be a tiny sliver of common sense in amongst a pile of water policy decision-making we are struggling to explain to our members.”

The technical working group chaired by Clutha Mayor Bryan Cadogan has recommended all council-owned mixed-use rural supplies should transfer to the new water services entities because they will have the people, resources and expertise to operate these schemes into the future. . . 

Brothers hunt our biggest trees – Rose O’Connor:

Identical twin brothers, Phil and Kevin Barker, love trees. Especially big ones – they’ve made it their mission to find New Zealand’s biggest native trees.

New Zealand may be a relatively young country, but there are huge trees still standing in our native forests that once had moa browsing at their base, and giant pouākai (Haast’s eagle) resting in their crown. Since childhood, twin brothers Phil and Kevin Barker have been going into the bush on a quest to find New Zealand’s biggest rimu, matai and kahikatea and to celebrate their ancient grandeur.

Kevin is a science teacher in Auckland, and Philip spent 30 years as a police officer. These days, he runs a motel in Hokitika. Their shared passion for native trees, which began in childhood, still burns undimmed in both of them. “Some of the biggest trees are well over a thousand years old,” Phil told Frank Film with obvious awe. “It’s so great to see them, and there’s just such a majesty to them.”

After hours of whacking through the dense bush and finding a forest giant, the pair will commence the serious business of measurement and comparison. They use three measures – the girth, the height, and the spread of the crown at the summit of the tree. “That’s what makes a champion tree. A combination of those three things,” says Kevin. . . 

 

NZHIA ihemp Discovery & Investment tour 2022 :

The New Zealand Hemp Industries Association, the industry organisation dedicated to the promotion and economic growth of industrial hemp in NZ, has been awarded AGMARDT funds to undertake a network building and capability development project.

The objective is to develop collaborative regional networks to allow scalable expansion of this emerging industry across a variety of sectors by offering information and expertise that will inspire “light bulb” moments.

To achieve this network, of connected community-based individuals and businesses, the NZHIA are conducting a nationwide roadshow “The NZHIA iHemp Discovery & Investment Tour 2022”.

The Tour will promote the iHemp industry to key stakeholders and end users in the farming, food fibre and health sectors, including Māori/Iwi based groups, entrepreneurs, investors, and the R&D communities, throughout Aotearoa New Zealand, to encourage their interest and participation in the iHemp industry. . . 

Increased excise means higher prices for wineries and consumers:

Excise on wine is set for its biggest increase in 30 years, following the government’s decision to lift excise by 6.9% from 1 July says Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand Winegrowers.

“Like every business, wineries are already facing big cost increases, so there is no way the excise increase can be absorbed by them. This excise increase will need to be passed on to consumers.”

The increased excise tax will most strongly impact the 300 members of New Zealand Winegrowers who only produce wine for New Zealanders to drink. . . 


Three Waters as bad as feared

10/06/2022

The Taxpayers’ Union’s Three Waters roadshow is atttracting big crowds.

It was standing room only in Alexandra , about 400 gathered in Gore  and the Invercargill crowd was bigger still.

Consultation was a farce, changes do nothing to improve the Bill which is as bad as was feared:

Labour has confirmed the worst fears of local communities by tabling a Bill to ram through its Three Waters Agenda, National’s Local Government spokesman Simon Watts says.

“Local government is in open revolt, and the public overwhelmingly opposes these reforms. Labour is unleashing hell on local government, putting their ideology before the wishes of people and outcomes.

“The Water Services Entities Bill, tabled in Parliament today, lays out the final plans for the theft of local assets and the establishment of a complex and unaccountable bureaucracy.

“The Government has consistently ignored alternatives proposed like establishing council controlled organisations or contracting, and have pursued their four mega-entities model.

“Under this model communities will lose their voices, cross subsidise their neighbours and get worse outcomes.

“This is just the Labour Party centralising decision-making and rewarding its stakeholders at the expense of ratepayers.

“National has opposed these reforms consistently, and if elected in 2023, we will repeal and replace this broken model.”

Peter Williams discusses the issues with Sean Plunket on The Platform:


Need to unteach race

10/06/2022

Dame Anne Salmond says it’s time to unteach race.

It’s an interesting read, but if you don’t have time to follow the link, she concludes:

. . . At present, the Government is involved in initiatives that, at least in part, seem to return to the old race-based dichotomies. Rather than ‘co-governance,’ these might be described as ‘parallel governance’ arrangements, which have not been subjected to scrutiny by the Waitangi Tribunal or other independent authorities.

These initiatives include governance structures that give literal effect to the ‘Lands’ case formulation of a ‘partnership between races,’ splitting ‘Maori’ from ‘the Crown,’ and ‘Maori’ from ‘Pākehā’ on a 50/50 basis, and a discussion of constitutional issues that excludes ‘non-Māori’ New Zealanders. Yet the idea of ‘race’, with its sharp-edged silos and its destructive colonial history, has no place in New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements for the 21st Century.

In a democracy, as on the marae, matters of collective interest should be decided by robust and respectful debate. The Government should stop trying to curate the conversation and force predetermined outcomes on constitutional matters, because this is backfiring. Exchanges based on racial framings provoke racist reactions; and questions that need airing are being swamped in a tsunami of racist abuse, foreclosing a proper (‘tika’) discussion.

A lot of the racist abuse is directed at people who are trying to ask questions and debate issues and are met with attempts to silence them by labelling them racist.


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