26 New Ministry for Primary Industries border staff begin training in Auckland today as part of a programme to beef up frontline resources, Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has announced today.
“Close to 125 new quarantine inspectors have joined MPI in the last 18 months and this is another big boost in resources.
“The 26 new staff will graduate around the middle of this year and will be posted around New Zealand.
“While there is increasing use of technology and intelligence to protect our border, we still need people on the frontline.
“Biosecurity is my number one priority as Minister because it is so important in protecting our economy. We know that unwanted pests and diseases can have devastating effects on our farmers and growers. . .
Clover root weevil under attack in Southland – Sally Rae:
An industry-wide effort is under way in Southland to combat the damaging clover root weevil, whose economic damage has been measured in hundreds of millions of dollars nationwide.
Clover root weevil (CRW), identified by distinctive U-shaped notches on clover leaves, was discovered in the Waikato and Auckland in 1996 and has now spread as far as Southland.
A project, involving AgResearch, Beef and Lamb New Zealand, DairyNZ and Environment Southland, which has been releasing parasitised clover root weevils on Southland farms, is being accelerated. . .
Fonterra Chairman John Wilson visited Fonterra’s new $126 million UHT milk processing site at Waitoa on the weekend.The site is in its final stages of testing before commissioning Anchor UHT milk and cream products at the end of this month.
Mr Wilson said he was impressed with how quickly it had taken the site to get to this stage with construction completed in 12 months.
“It was great to get the chance to visit and meet the team who have brought our Waitoa site to life. There is a real sense of pride from the team on the ground. . . .
David Kidd is the fourth Grand Finalist to be named in the 2014 ANZ Young Farmer Contest.
The thirty year old sheep and beef farm manager of Shelley Beach took first place at the Northern Regional Final at the Kaikohe Showgrounds over the weekend, Saturday 15 March.
Thirty years after Mr Kidd’s father, Richard Kidd, became a Grand Finalist David is following in his footsteps. Richard placed third (on count back) in the 1984 Timaru Grand Final representing the Northern Region. “I don’t remember it, but I was at that Grand Final and it was my first Young Farmers experience,” said Mr Kidd. . .
Meet Dr Sunday – Alice Roberts:
A doctor living in rural Queensland says it’s the patients who have kept him in town for the past decade.
Dr Sunday Adebiyi has been a general practitioner in Dysart for 10 years.
He says it’s the friendships you strike up in regional areas that make the job worthwhile.
“I have some very, very good patients and I think about them and they think about me, they are concerned about my welfare and how I’m going,” he says.
“So with such people it would be very difficult to let them down. . .
More than 80 New Zealand and Australian farmers toured South Island farms last week as part of Rabobank’s Business Management Programme alumni tour.
They visited a deer operation, an intensive indoor robotic dairy operation and a mixed cropping and birdseed business, which was currently undertaking a dairy conversion.
They also visited North Otago dairy farmer Rogan Borrie’s four properties near Oamaru.
Borrie, a fifth-generation farmer, completed Rabobank’s Farm Managers Programme in 2007.
He said it was a rewarding experience to share the developments and technology introduced on-farm.
“We showed the tour our new computerised irrigation scheme with pivot and fixed grid sprinklers that we have recently installed in order to reduce labour time and energy and improve water efficiency,” he said . .