Rural round-up

Farmers, growers face flooded fields, ruined crops after deluge – Sally Murphy :

Pastures are underwater, crops have been destroyed and culverts and valuable feed have been washed away due to heavy rainfall since Friday.

Auckland Federated Farmers president Alan Cole said farms were completely smashed because of the sheer volume of water.

“Some farms have lost all of their culverts, there’s a lot of fencing down and one dairy farm is under water so those cows had to be moved pretty quickly.

“It doesn’t matter how big your infrastructure is; nothing was prepared for that amount of water.” . . 

Auckland floods: Piles of fresh produce litter roadside, new hassle for growers, shoppers – John Weekes :

A fortune in fresh produce has been wiped out in the Auckland floods with piles of onions washed onto the roads and more food price inflation expected.

Fields with pumpkins, garlic, onions and other crops in Pukekohe were still partly flooded on Monday afternoon, nearly three days after the peak of the storm.

The community in the south of Auckland has some of the country’s best horticultural land. But roads and fields were damaged and crops washed into ditches and even residential suburbs.

Some people on Monday were scavenging onions at the side of the road. . . 

Camp reveals rising stars in dairy world – Tim Cronshaw :

A youth camp has helped young animal handlers perfect tricks of the trade. Tim Cronshaw takes a closer look.

Holly Powell is tucking away a few tricks of the trade for a major dairy event after picking them up at a skills camp in Rangiora.

The 19-year-old was among 21 young handlers to attend the World Wide Sires National All Dairy Breeds Youth Camp organised by Holstein Friesian New Zealand at the local A&P showgrounds.

“I’ve been to four camps now and every year you pick up little pieces and tricks to make the animals look as good as possible, just picking up tricks to do the the top line and the belly hair.” . . 

Food exports increase in 2022 :

Total exports saw a growth of $8.7 billion (14 percent) to $72.2 billion in the year ended December 2022 compared with 2021, Stats NZ said today.

Annual imports also rose sharply to $86.7 billion, up $16.1 billion (23 percent).

“Price inflation has been a topic of interest in 2022, and we’re seeing the results of it in these large increases,” international trade manager Alasdair Allen said.

“Many major export commodities eased in volume but saw price increases drive higher values across the year. . . 

Fonterra signs five-year contract with EROAD for 500+ tankers :

Transportation technology services company EROAD Limited (NZX/ASX: ERD) (EROAD) has today announced the acquisition of a significant enterprise customer in New Zealand.

The Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited (Fonterra) has signed a five-year contract to install EROAD fleet management hardware across its fleet of 500+ milk tankers.

Mark Heine, EROAD’s Chief Executive Officer says, “we’re incredibly excited to be partnering with such an iconic and important organisation here in New Zealand. Creating safer, more sustainable roads is at the very heart of what we do at EROAD, and it’s clear that Fonterra is equally committed to these goals.”

From Cape Reinga to Bluff, and almost everywhere in between, Fonterra’s milk collection operation spans the entire country. Through its fleet of 500+ milk collection tankers and 1600+ tanker operators, Fonterra completes an average of one farm collection every 15 seconds and collects around 16.5 billion litres of milk per year. . . 

Ag-drive partners with Agriacadamy to broaden training available to the agricultural sector :

Waikato’s largest agricultural vehicle training provider, Ag Drive, has signed an agreement with Agricademy to deliver its award-winning operator training to even more of the agriculture sector.

Agricademy provides training for new employees in a more affordable and effective way, leaving classrooms behind, to quickly improve staff productivity. Their innovative training model has been developed online and on-farm for the generation that gets its information online on their smartphones and connects on social media.

Agricademy Managing Director Alister Shennan says they’re excited to be working with Ag Drive, which has a great reputation for offering practical, tailored training in the machine and vehicle operation space.

“Agricademy training offers the practical and life skills employees need to do well at work, so it was a natural synergy for us to partner with Ag Drive, who are known for their practical training,” he says. . .

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