Orchard staff may head west – Jared Morgan:
The lure of a transtasman bubble and a reinvigorated hospitality sector may lead backpackers away from Central Otago orchards and vineyards, industry leaders warn.
For a sector already faced with critical labour shortages, the consequences of that could be dire if the long-awaited travel bubble opens as scheduled on Monday.
With hopes of recognised seasonal employer workers from the Pacific being allowed into New Zealand in time to complete the 2020-21 season evaporating, the loss of backpackers before the season was complete would strike another blow.
Seasonal Solutions chief executive Helen Axby said the loss of backpackers to the warmer climes of Australia was a real possibility. . .
Agrichemicals are a lifesaver – Jacqueline Rowarth:
Many experts regard agrichemicals as a lifesaver and they have the facts to back it up. However, this doesn’t stop people’s concern over their use, Dr Jacqueline Rowarth writes.
Chemicals used in agriculture are termed “agrichemicals”. They are also called “agrochemicals” which sounds worse.
But while a few people rant about their existence, many experts regard them as just as much of a lifesaver as, for instance, the development of antibiotics and vaccines.
A series of articles published by geneticliteracyproject.org (a website with the strapline “science not ideology”) presents facts clearly. . .
Making the most of a move south – Rebecca Ryan:
Life is a balancing act for Celia Van Kampen. The Oamaru vet tells Rebecca Ryan how she successfully fits her busy sporting schedule in around her work.
What’s your background? Where are you from?
I grew up in the Hawke’s Bay as one of four kids. I went to school at Taikura Rudolf Steiner School, then studied veterinary science at Massey University in Palmerston North, graduating in 2018, then I moved straight from studying down here. I have been working at the Veterinary Centre Oamaru for just over a year and a half. I started in January 2019.
Had you always wanted to be a vet?
I was quite young when I decided that becoming a vet was a good idea. I can’t remember exactly what my reasons were then, but as I got closer to finishing school I liked that being a vet you got to work with lots of different species, the challenge of trying to work out what was wrong and fix it. Now, I really enjoy the variation of getting outside and work with farmers, but also small animals case work-ups and surgery. . .
Rabobank is kicking off the 2021 Pitch programme for FoodBytes!, the bank’s global food and agriculture innovation platform, which drives connections and collaboration between startups, corporate leaders,investors and farmers to implement solutions to food system challenges.
From now until Sunday 16 May, Kiwi agtech, food tech and consumer food and beverage startups are invited to apply for selection to present at the global virtual pitch competition in November.
FoodBytes! Pitch is an annual multi-week programme helping food and agriculture startups from throughout the world validate and grow their businesses, and their impact, through global industry exposure, tailored mentorship sessions, connection with corporates and investors, pitch refinement, industry awareness and recognition. . .
Entries are open for the 2021 Fieldays Innovation Awards, that have been refined to clearly represent the innovation lifecycle, resulting in three award categories: Prototype, Early Stage, and Growth & Scale.
Fieldays Innovations Event Manager, Gail Hendricks, says “ its no surprise that innovation has become a top priority for businesses, especially for primary industries in terms of providing sustainable and productive solutions that drive economic progress.
The Fieldays Innovation Awards entries will be on display in the new and enhanced Fieldays Innovation Hub, where entrants can test their innovation and connect with potential customers, industry professionals, investors, and corporate decision makers. In the Innovation Hub, Fieldays visitors will be able to tangibly experience the phases of innovation lifecycle represented by the three award categories.
Sheep assemble into mysterious ‘flock circles’ in Rottingdeam – Harry Bullmore:
WE’VE all heard of crop circles, and the many theories behind them.
Aliens and pranksters are among the explanations given for the intricate patterns which appear in fields and leave farmers scratching their heads.
However, in Sussex, there appears to be a new natural phenomenon – flock circles.
University lecturer Chris Hogg was cycling through the South Downs, behind Rottingdean, when he saw hundreds of sheep arranged into a series of concentric circles on a hillside. . .