Consistent performer helps others – Hugh Stringleman:
The Cookson family are at the true heart of Northland’s beef finishing industry beside State Highway 1 at Kawakawa and consistently producing carcaseweight yield and financial results well above the provincial average. Their pursuit of knowledge from hosting trials and research projects energises the Cooksons and draws hundreds of farmers to their field days. Hugh Stringleman went along.
Former New Zealand Spearfishing champion and international representative Geff Cookson has an impressive record in the water and on the land.
He has hit target after target and inspired many fishers and farmers over a lifetime of sports activities and on the Kawakawa hill country home farm he took over from his father in 1970.. .
Farm sales quiet but resilient – Alan Williams:
The rural real estate market remained resilient through the quiet June trading period, especially for drystock farms even though prices were lower overall.
Despite a positive pricing outlook for most sectors, the Mycoplasma bovis virus is a worry in dairy and beef farming zones and early spring is likely to be a test for the Government and industry animal eradication programme, Real Estate Institute rural spokesman Brian Peacocke said.
Sales turnover was lower for the three months to the end of June compared to the three months to the end of May, with 32 fewer sales. . .
1080 drop to kill rabbits – Tom Kitchin:
A Manuherikia Valley farmer is making a last-ditch effort to rid his land of rabbits by dropping 1080 for the first time in three decades.
Ophir farmer Sam Leask, who owns the Booth Rd farm, said it was the first time a 1080 drop had been done on his land in about 30 years.
“The rabbits have just got away … I’ve never seen rabbits like this in my life. It’s just got out to the stage that there’s so many rabbits we have to go back to the old methods. We hate to have to drop 1080 but we have no other choice.”
He had used pindone pellets, and completed shooting day and night but wanted something more effective . .
Mutual aid helps us survive winter – Bryan Gibson:
A mate of mine posted a picture on Instagram last night of the first three calves born on her dairy farm. For her, and for countless other dairy farmers around New Zealand, it has begun.
Calving is an intense period for dairy farmers. There are long hours, late night outings, sleep deprivation and bad weather to contend with. Of course, most farming families also have children to attend to, households to run and cows to milk again.
There were new lambs in the fields on my drive to work this morning too, a reminder this time of year is equally as stressful for sheep and beef farmers who are nurturing this abundance of new life. . .
Grape harvest up; season warmest in decades – Tom Kitchin:
The weather for this year’s Central Otago wine vintage was the warmest since 1956 and tonnage was up, on trend with the rest of the country.
A statement from New Zealand Winegrowers said New Zealand benefited from ”a warm summer” and 419,000 tonnes of grapes were harvested in the country’s vintage this year.
This was up 6% on the 2017 tonnage, but still lower than first anticipated, due to an early start to the season. . .
Kenya is on the brink of embracing biotechnology in agriculture. On the brink. Now I’m ready to say something new. We’ve been on the brink for too long.”
These words, offered by Gilbert arap Bor, a Kenyan smallholder farmer and lecturer at the Catholic University of East Africa- Eldoret, illustrate the frustration shared by many farmers -smallholder and large across Kenya and much of the African and Asian continents. With the safety of GE crops confirmed and supported by scientists, approved by every regulatory agency around the world, based on thousands of reports and 21 years of data, why does the war regarding the safety of these often life-changing crops continue to rage?
Have no doubt: The impacts of this ‘war’ are real, and they challenge farmers in the developing and developed countries around the world. . .