Associate Primary Industries Minister Jo Goodhew says the results from a trial using remote control technology in tree felling, which could save lives in forestry harvesting operations, show promising results.
“During the successful trial the operator was able to successfully fell and bunch several trees from a safe distance at the top of a steep slope using a remote control device,” says Mrs Goodhew.
“Much of the forestry work in New Zealand is done on steep land. The use of remote control to operate machinery on steep land will essentially remove forestry workers from hazardous areas and prevent injuries and death—a valuable and critical step forward for the industry.” . . .
Russia wants our cheese but at what cost? – Niko Kloeten and Stacey Kirk:
New Zealand may have escaped Russia’s trade crackdown, but companies need to be careful doing business there, a trade expert says.
New Zealand has been warned that continuing to trade with Russia could damage its international reputation.
Russia today announced a ban on food imports from most Western countries, including the United States, Australia and the 29 member countries of the European Union, in retaliation against trade sanctions over Russia’s actions in Ukraine.
New Zealand was not included in the ban, and Russia has signalled it will increase cheese imports from New Zealand to make up some of the shortfall. . .
Foreign ownership of farms ‘about right’ – Guy – Tim Cronshaw:
Minister of Primary Industries Nathan Guy is comfortable with the level of foreign investment in farmland as opposition grows against big tracts of land being bought by overseas owners.
Guy said New Zealanders should not lose sight they had relied heavily on foreign investment for a long time.
He said foreign ownership of land had become an election issue and the Government was confident of its position.
“We have to keep a reasoned and balanced debate through this issue and of course we will have political parties say they will do one thing on the campaign trail and maybe another when in government,” said Guy at a Christchurch luncheon this week. . .
Local people preserve the environment better than governments – Fred Pearce:
“FOR the Wapichan, our forests are our life.” Nicholas Fredericks, a local leader of these indigenous South American people, peers out from his village into the bush. “Outsiders have a financial view of the land,” he says. “They see our forests as money. We see them as life. We have to protect them for the future of our people.”
The Wapichan, who live in southern Guyana, have just completed a high-resolution map of their traditional lands to justify their claim for legal title. They want 14,000 square kilometres to be protected as a community forest. Guyana’s government has so far ignored their proposal. . .
The importance of ‘nutrient efficiency’ – Bala Tikkisetty:
Winter and early spring are when nutrients – whether introduced as fertiliser or produced by stock – are most at risk of getting lost from farms.
That’s due to seasonal and other factors such as high rainfall, reduced pasture growth, a huge amount of urine being produced, soil compaction and pugging.
To help farmers keep on top of the implications of this for their property’s profitability and impact on the environment, a farm nutrient budget is a valuable indicator of the status of nutrients in a farm system.
It indicates where fertiliser applications are inadequate and leading to a decline in the soil nutrient status. Conversely, it can indicate excessive inputs which result in a nutrient surplus and greater potential for losses of contaminants to waterways and groundwater. . .
A new international standard will guide organisations to measure their ‘water footprint’, and New Zealanders were involved in developing the standard.
ISO 14046 Environmental management – Water footprint – Principles, requirements and guidelines will allow all kinds of organisations, from industry, to government and NGOs, the means to measure their ‘water footprint’, or their potential environmental impact of water use and pollution.
Developed by experts from all over the world, the standard is based on a Life Cycle Assessment and can assist in: . . .
CRV Ambreed herd improvement specialists, Mark and Sue Duffy, have packed up their bags and shifted to Oamaru, where they will be helping to improve farmers’ businesses across the South Island region.
The Duffy’s have a long passion for herd management and breeding and are looking forward to sharing their dairy experience with farmers who want to get the best results for their herd.
“We’ll be working across the region to help farmers achieve a productive, healthy, fertile and efficient herd,” said Mr Duffy. . .