Rural round-up

05/02/2019

They’re doing the impossible – Ross Nolly:

A Taranaki family has its eye set firmly on farm ownership. Ross Nolly reports.

When Glen and Trish Rankin entered the Dairy Industry Awards one of the things they looked forward to was the feedback from judges.

However, when it came, it was unexpected and set them aback, especially when they were told farm ownership might not be achievable.

“Feedback from the second time we entered was that we were pulling in different directions and that they couldn’t ever see us owning a farm. It felt blunt at the time but was spot on,” Trish says.

“They suggested we pool our skills and focus on driving our farm business. We’d just had baby number four, we were frantically busy but still not getting ahead. We decided to search for a 50-50 job.” . . 

Extra grazing slows start to meat season :

Good grass growth has dominated the season for central South Island meat processors.

Anzco Foods Canterbury processing general manager Darryl Tones said wet weather before Christmas caused a slower than usual start to the season but meant farmers had quite a lot of feed and the stock was in good condition.

The plant was running at ”full seasonal capacity for beef and lamb with day and night shifts operating for both”, Mr Tones said. . .

Planet-saving diet has pitfalls – Richard Rennie:

Richard Rennie examines a report that suggests the world eat far more grains, nuts and beans with less of everything else.

A report from medical journal The Lancet calls for significant shifts in the types of foods people eat.

It is a shift in diet that has the planet as much as human health firmly in mind but has been challenged on grounds New Zealand is already well down the path to providing the planet with a sustainable diet. . . 

 

Pania Te-Paiho Marsh teaches Kiwi women how to hunt – Kirsty Lawrence:

Every time Pania Te-Paiho Marsh takes a group of women out hunting she sees their confidence grow. 

What started as an innocent Facebook offer has grown into a list filled with more than 1000 women who want the experience of going bush. 

Te-Paiho Marsh started Wahine Toa Hunting in August and said the idea came about as she wanted people to live a better lifestyle. 

“I wanted to help women become more self-sufficient, to walk what I talk.”  . . 

Ozone in the vineyard – Tessa Nicholson:

The word ozone conjures up images of big holes in the atmosphere, stronger UV light, the risk of severe sunburn and CFC’s — at least in this part of the world.

However if you are a vineyard owner, then maybe you want to think again about this particular compound, as it could be a saving grace out there among the vines.

Ozone or O3, is an unstable bluish gas, that has long been recognised as a sterilising agent in wineries and dairy units. . . 

Drought and a creeping emptiness in NSW – Perry Duffin:

Smaller farming communities across NSW are shrinking in the face of economic and social headwinds but those who remain fear the current drought is accelerating the decline.

Between 2006 and 2011 the Riverina-Murray population increased by 18,000 people overall, according to the census.

But a closer look at migration data reveals smaller towns lost thousands to regional centres such as Wagga Wagga and Albury. . . 

 


Rural round-up

03/10/2016

Red meat earnings potential missed – Andrea Fox:

It’s time red meat and fibre farmers woke up to the potential to lift their earnings that is right under their noses instead of blaming meat companies and markets and the dairy industry.

That’s the crux of the message to farmers at workshops highlighting missed earning opportunities due to lack of business planning and constant measurement of production performance.

Presented by ANZ, the country’s biggest rural lending bank as part of its red meat industry extension commitment, and agribusiness consultant Will Wilson, the ongoing workshops hammer the message that the most opportunities for beef and sheep farmers exist in their paddocks, not beyond the farmgate.

Beehive thefts annoy bee keepers – Kirsty Lawrence:

Beekeepers are wondering what more they can do to protect their hives as the prosecution rate for theft remains low.

In the past year, 375 beehives have been reported stolen between Palmerston North and Whanganui, a distance of about 75 kilometres.

In Northland, about $500,000 worth of hives were stolen earlier this year.

A 50-year-old salesman from rural Palmerston North has been charged with stealing eight beehives in Manawatu recently. . .

What about the rabbits? – Kate Guthrie:

If we knock back ferrets and feral cats will rabbit numbers soar? It is a concern that’s frequently raised, particularly in farming areas where rabbit control is already an issue. As rabbits are the main prey of ferrets and feral cats, it seems intuitively logical that rabbits will thrive without their predators. But there is a lot more going on with respect to what really controls rabbit numbers – as research into rabbit population dynamics reveals.

In response to the farming community’s concerns, Landcare Research scientists Grant Norbury and Chris Jones reviewed the current research literature on rabbits. . . .

A welcome for the shearers – Anne Hughes:

Running the shearing shed can be physically and mentally demanding. The lead-up to shearing requires good planning to bring sheep to the yards, allocate grazing after shearing and maximise returns from your wool clip.

This usually means lots of mustering and long days in the yards, especially when shearing is combined with weaning and drenching.

 

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No farmer, no food.


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