On-farm GHG reductions come at a huge cost – Hugh Stringleman:
The cost of reducing methane and nitrous oxide emissions on the Northland Agricultural Research Farm (NARF) in the 2022 season was 40% of operating profit compared with typical dairy farming in the Kaipara district.
The results of the first season of the four-year Future Farming Systems trial at Dargaville were released at the annual Northland Dairy Development Trust (NDDT) field day.
NARF’s farm and cows have been split into three equalised farmlets, with separate vats, to compare a typical Northland system with one that has 74% of land in tall fescue/cocksfoot-based pastures, and with a third designed to meet greenhouse gas emissions targets (see panel).
Financial analysis of the first season, using a $9.30/kg milk price, showed the “Current” farm was the most profitable with $5040/ha operating profit, followed closely by the Alternative Pastures farm with $4876/ha. . .
Calling for fairer methane reporting and targets – Jim van der Poel & Andrew Morrison:
DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb NZ are calling on the Government to give farmers a fair deal by using the latest and best science when setting methane targets.
While New Zealand farmers overall are reducing emissions, agriculture is currently being blamed for a far bigger share of New Zealand’s warming than it actually causes.
It’s important all sectors play their part, including agriculture, transport, energy, towns and cities.
The method the Government uses to calculate emissions data, GWP100, is accurate for carbon dioxide but hugely overstates the warming impact of methane. . .
Genetic rules mean NZ”s missing opportunities – Treasury – Business Desk:
New Zealand is missing opportunities because of its regulatory barriers to genetic modification, Treasury secretary Caralee McLiesh says.
“The flipside of unlocking innovation through regulatory reform is regulation that constrains new technologies and ways of working,” she told the NZ Association of Economists annual conference at Victoria University of Wellington.
“While other advanced economies have embraced these techniques, our current regulatory barriers mean that we are missing opportunities – for example, to improve drought and disease resistance in plants, reduce greenhouse gas emissions from grazing animals and reduce fertiliser-use issues by improving disease resistance,” she said.
GM organisms and technologies are regulated under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 (HSNO). . .
A new history of New Zealand’s sheep and beef sector released this week outlines the achievements of the red meat industry over the past 25 years and its contribution to the national economy.
Meeting Change: the NZ Red Meat Story 1997-2022, written by Ali Spencer and Mick Calder, was commissioned by the New Zealand Meat Board (NZMB) to mark its centenary year.
It is the third in a series of histories of the sector, following Golden Jubileee edited by Dai Hayward (1972) and Meat Acts written by Janet Tyson and Mick Calder (1999).
The book was officially launched at an event last night at Te Papa in Wellington, attended by current and former Meat Board members and staff, and other key players in the sheep and beef sector. . .
A new partnership between Federated Farmers of NZ and the New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association (NZTBA) underlines the commitment of both organisations to helping their members be front-runners in caring for their animals and land.
“Farmers who join the Federation have long recognised we’re stronger together,” Feds CEO Terry Copeland says. “With thoroughbred breeders also joining the fold, we have a bigger pool of resources and greater strength to our voice in our advocacy to politicians, decision-makers and government departments.”
As landowners, there will already be NZTBA members who belong to Federated Farmers and the partnership agreement between the two organisations will strengthen and develop those ties.
“We have a lot in common,” Terry said. “Whether you’re a breeder of champion horses, a dairy or sheep farmer, you’re vitally interested in the welfare of your animals and being a good steward of your land. We’re all interested in ensuring government policies that affect our industries are sensible, practical and affordable.” . .
New Zealand’s primary sector needs to get on the digital bus now or risk losing international market access
Trust Alliance New Zealand (TANZ) will showcase a new digital tool at the Primary Industries New Zealand conference on 6/7 July in Auckland, which is aimed at helping food and fibre exporters keep up with ever increasing international compliance standards.
The ‘digital compliance product passport’ is an international standard, data sharing technology where everyone across the sector is able to securely contribute, control, collate and protect their crucial farm data.
TANZ Executive Director Klaeri Schelhowe says “At the moment there is no easy mechanism for farmers and food producers to easily and directly input their farm’s data in a trustworthy way. The existing data exchange models are inefficient and a waste time which is why we have acted now to create a smarter way of collecting and sharing this important data.” . .