Flying high on the seeds of success – Sally Rae:
Topflite is a quiet North Otago success story, growing from humble beginnings amid the district’s farmland to one of New Zealand’s leading pet food brands. Business editor Sally Rae talks to general manager Greg Webster about joining the family business and the opportunities Covid-19 has afforded it.
When Greg Webster was growing up on a farm in rural North Otago, he vividly recalls his father, Jock, telling him never to be a farmer.
It was the 1980s — an era that was “so tough” for farmers who were battling crippling drought and huge interest rates.
“They were under the pump. Some of that probably rubbed off,” Mr Webster recalled this week. . .
Freeze-dried meat for natural treats – Ashley Smyth :
Oamaru pet food brand Topflite has unleashed its latest project, Hound.
Topflite Hound is a line of minimally processed, freeze-dried meat treats for dogs. The treats were made from grass-fed, low-stress beef and cage-free chicken and were as natural as possible, which aligned with the brand, marketing manager Carolyn Webster said.
The product seemed a “logical next step” for the company, who already specialised in small animal pet food.
General manager Greg Webster had done some research into the market years ago and saw the opportunities in dog treats, so it had been on his radar for a long time. . .
Livestock researchers around the world can now remotely detect ryegrass staggers in sheep using on-animal sensors.
This follows research findings from an international team – including researchers from Lincoln University and CQ University in Central Queensland.
Results from the study means that, in the future, farmers will be able to act quickly and move sheep to new pastures when they begin to display the signs of (grass) staggers – potentially improving their bottom line by $100 per hectare.
Grass stagger is caused by the consumption of plants such as phalaris and ryegrass – common in both Australia and New Zealand – that are infected with toxic strains of endophyte. It can be fatal if animals have experienced prolonged exposure to toxic pasture. . .
Permission to discharge milk among regional council’s new consents – Brendon McMahon:
Westland Milk Products has been granted a renewed consent by the West Coast Regional Council to discharge milk waste to land from its Hokitika factory.
Council consents and compliance manager Colin Helem said the application, to discharge milk and milk by-products to land where it may enter water, was to renew the previous consent which was due to expire.
The non-notified consent allows the company to discharge on to areas at Ngāi Tahu Forestry’s Mahinapua, Kaniere, Waimea and Nemona forest blocks.
This was one of 15 non-notified consents issued by the regional council during March. . .
“The industry’s first licence renewal and expansion will enable Helius to produce New Zealand grown and made medicinal cannabis products – something Kiwi patients have been waiting for since the inception of the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme. It’s an exciting milestone,” says Carmen Doran, chief executive of Helius Therapeutics.
Helius was New Zealand’s first medicinal cannabis business to achieve a GMP Licence for Manufacturing Medicines in July 2021, covering the first products to market.
The Ministry of Health has now renewed and expanded Helius’ licence allowing the Auckland-based company to make active ingredients onsite from raw cannabis material.
Every New Zealand GP can now prescribe medicinal cannabis for any health condition, with Kiwi-manufactured products using imported active ingredients available for the past six months. . .
GOR Woollen Mill set to be one of the largest in Australia under expansion plans – Rochelle Kirkham :
An alpaca farm and woollen mill’s move to Ballarat will add a highly-regarded ‘paddock to product’ business to central Victoria and create a new tourism drawcard.
Great Ocean Road Woollen Mill, now known as GOR Woollen Mill, is in the process of relocating its alpacas to Burrumbeet and setting up new machinery in Delacombe, near Ballarat.
The move from the business’s previous home in Ecklin South near Timboon was driven by a need to be on a bigger site to keep up with demand for their alpaca fibre and be located closer to their customer base.
Owners Nick and Isabel Renters have had a big week starting to unpack seven crates of new wool processing machinery from Italy at their Delacombe factory. . .