Smirr – a fine, misty rain or drizzle; mist like precipitation.
New Zealand’s dairy industry, which is proving again it is the backbone of the country’s export industries, has been given fresh encouragement with the big co-op Fonterra signalling a record milk price for the season that has just opened.
It comes as the payout for the just-finished season stands as the highest since the co-op was formed in 2001.
So although farmers have made decisions for this season on the number of cows they are milking, they have the incentive to go hard on production levels, despite the pressure from higher costs and worries over climate changes measures, including projected charges on emissions.
Fonterra’s buoyant forecast contrasts with a recent report by agribusiness banking specialist Rabobank which said that despite global milk production looking set to decrease for the fourth consecutive quarter in Q2 2022, weakening global demand is expected to create a scenario that will see moderate price declines in dairy commodities during the second half of the year. . .
Damien O’Connor scored twice – he issued one statement as Minister of Trade and another as Minister of Agriculture – while rookie Emergency Relief Minister Kieran McNulty broke his duck, announcing flood relief for the West Coast.
Covid-19 Response Minister Ayesha Verrall put more runs on the board, too, with a statement about Government work to combat new and more dangerous variants of COVID-19.
In his trade job, O’Connor declared he was pleased with the quick progress of the United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill that was introduced to the House yesterday.
It would enable New Zealand to implement its obligations under the FTA and was necessary to bring the FTA into force, he explained. . .
The kiwifruit sector is predicting lower profits this year, as yields drop and shipping costs continue to climb.
Kiwifruit marketer Zespri has sent out an update to growers which shows a decent drop in profit is expected this year.
Last year Zespri made a record $361.5 million, but this year that is expected to drop to between $227m and $247m.
Company spokesperson Carol Ward said it had been a difficult season. . .
The Chairperson of the Primary Production Committee is now calling for public submissions on the Forests (Legal Harvest Assurance) Amendment Bill.
The bill would amend the Forests Act 1949 to establish a legal harvest system. This system aims to provide assurance that timber supplied and traded has been harvested legally. The legal harvest system would:
· require that log traders, primary processors, importers, and exporters who operate above specified thresholds to be registered
· require harvest information to be supplied to others when trading, and for records of that information to be kept . .
Groundspread NZ (NZGFA) was established in 1956 to promote and protect the interests of both individuals and companies involved in the groundspread fertiliser industry. The Association is made up of 110 voluntary members from throughout New Zealand, with each member committed to promoting best practice fertiliser placement. Precision placement of fertiliser requires skilled operators, sound spreading equipment and appropriate fertilisers.
Groundspreaders are typically the first step in ensuring on-farm productivity, by spreading nutrients accurately and evenly, using the latest technology, finely calibrated vehicles, and highly trained operators, groundspreaders help farmers and growers get the best out of their nutrient spend. The skill involved in groundspreading means that food production in New Zealand gets the best start possible.
The new name and website better share the story of how the Association’s members contribute to on-farm performance. The new name and website are initiatives driven by the Association’s new and ambitious strategic plan, committed to ensuring best practice in the groundspread industry. Farmers and growers can now visit www.groundspreadnz.com to find a spreader in their area, learn more about how the Association supports members to operate at the high level that they do, and learn more about the Spreadmark scheme.
Spreadmark, established by Groundspread NZ (NZGFA) in 1994, was born from a commitment by the Association’s members to improve spreader performance and outcomes for their clients and the environment. Proper placement of fertiliser is of considerable agronomic benefit to farmers and growers and helps protect the environment from the undesirable side effects of poor fertiliser spreading practices. . .
Greenfern Industries Limited (GFI:NZX) is pleased to announce it has attained its globally-recognised GACP (Good Agriculture and Collection Practice) certification for its cultivation facility based in Normanby, Taranaki.
“This is a milestone that the team has been working towards for some time since commencing cultivation and research and development in our pilot stage one facility,” said Greenfern’s managing director Dan Casey.
GACP guidelines were developed to create a single supranational framework to ensure appropriate and consistent quality in the cultivation and production of medicinal plant and herbal substances. They were developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2003 with the aim of improving the quality of medicinal plants being used in herbal medicines in the commercial market.
Greenfern’s certification was undertaken by Control Union Medicinal Cannabis Standards (CUMCS). Control Union Israel was one of the partners which formulated the Israeli Cannabis Standard, which is a global standard. Since then, they have been involved with the development of the Medical Cannabis Standard GAP. . .
Black Heels and Tractor Wheels Podcasts are a Rural Women NZ initiative in which they share stories from a range of women around New Zealand.
Today, we speak to Raewyn van Vugt who operates a dairy farming business with her husband Rob in Otago
Raewyn grew up on the West Coast of the South Island, as a coal miners’ daughter in a small town called Reefton. In 1991 she moved to Inch Clutha with her husband Rob, where their farming enterprise started.
Raewyn has been heavily involved in her community, being a member and Treasurer of Plunket, Playcentre, PTA, and involved with the local discussion group, Large Herds Otago Committee and a Networker for Fonterra. She is also a member of the Inch Clutha RW and is currently the Regional Leader for Region 1.
Raewyn gives some tips for any aspiring farm owners, details her experiences going from a single mum to operating a successful farming enterprise with her husband, and helpful ways to get involved in your rural community.
Ooohh look over there.
That’s what Labour and others on the left are doing in trying to make Roe vs Wade an issue in New Zealand.
They’re worried about the polls and desperate for something they can use to attack National. Struggling to find traction on anything here they’re doing their best to use something that has no relevance in New Zealand.
In doing so they’ve been helped by the media who have, as they do too often, painted abortion as a black and white issue with no attempt to cover the many shades of grey.
Coverage of abortion is almost always divided into the two extremes, depicting it as either a woman’s choice or anti-women.
Those extremes might reflect the views of some people.
Some believe abortion is never, ever right. Some believe it is never, ever wrong.
But in between are a range of views.
It is possible to believe that life begins at conception but that abortion is right in a case like this to save the mother when the baby can’t survive.
It is possible to believe that life begins at conception and accept that while abortion isn’t right for those who believe that, there are cases where it could be right for others.
It is possible to believe that life begins at conception and accept it as an option in some circumstances including when the pregnancy is the result of incest or rape; it is being carried by a child; carrying the baby endangers the life or health of the mother, be it mental or physical; or when the mother for myriad reasons couldn’t cope with a child.
It is possible to believe that life begins at conception and accept that the consequences of illegal abortions, when that’s all there are, require and legitimise safe and legal ones.
Then there’s the shades of grey on the other side.
It is possible to believe that abortion is a woman’s right and accept there’s intellectual inconsistency when what’s aborted is regarded as merely a bunch of cells but what’s lost in a miscarriage is a baby with all the grief that goes with such a loss.
It is possible to believe that abortion is a woman’s right in early pregnancy but not in later stages, especially once the baby could survive outside the womb.
It is possible to believe that abortion is a woman’s right but that the child, and the father have rights too.
These nuances are rarely, if ever, covered in media stories on the issue and I have seen none in the extensive coverage that’s come in the wake of the US court’s decision.
Instead a lot of the focus has been on National and attempts to make abortion an issue which might have a profound impact on support, or otherwise for the party, and on next year’s election even though the USA decision has no relevance here.
Belatedly some focus turned on Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta who tweeted a comment condemning the Roe vs Wade decision even though she voted against the 2020 legislation liberalising abortion law.
. . . Politicians in New Zealand were also quick to condemn the move including Nanaia Mahuta who called it “draconian”.
“The US Supreme Courts overturning of Roe v. Wade Is draconian and does not support the right of women to choice. How can this happen? (sic)” Mahuta tweeted on Saturday. . .
Mahuta voted in favour of the first abortion reform reading in 2019 but against the second and third. She also voted in favour of legislation to introduce safe zones for women accessing abortion facilities in 2022.
A spokesperson for Mahuta said she was travelling and wouldn’t be able to answer why she voted against the second and third readings. . .
But regardless of which of our MPs voted which way, the USA legislation is an issue for that country and its people, not us and ours.
There might be a few single-issue voters who are agitated about abortion but when both major parties have said they have no intention of revisiting the legislation it won’t be of concern for most.
What will be top of mind, and are of far more imortance, are the issues from which Labour is trying to distract us – the cost of living, housing shortage, increase in crime, a health system in crisis . . .
There’s more than enough to foment domestic indignation without importing it over what’s happening in the USA. It will change nothing here no matter how hard some are trying to make it an issue for us and in doing so are painting it as black and white with no shades of grey.