One billion . . . wilding pines – Rachael Kelly:
Is this simply the dumbest waste of Government money to be spent in New Zealand?
The Government has committed $100m dollars to tackle wilding pines infestations during the next four years but under the One Billion Trees Fund, it’s also paying for the invasive species to be planted in the first place.
In Southland, a trust that has worked hard to eradicate wilding pines has written to Government ministers asking why they allow, under the fund, the planting of wilding species.
The Mid Dome Wilding Pine Trust has spent more than $10m clearing wilding contorta pines from northern Southland since 2007. . .
The Government’s carbon credit policy is “idealistic” and missing “the big picture” says Mike Cranstone.
“Allowing an overseas fund manager to use our productive land to grow carbon credits – that’s like cutting off a finger of our productive hand,” the Whanganui Federated Farmers president and hill country farmer told The Country’s Jamie Mackay.
Cranstone was also not a fan of giving up profitable sheep and beef land to forestry.
“Let’s have the government set the incentives and the policy to actually encourage farmers to think about their marginal land and plant that”. . .
The government is underestimating the size of the labour shortage rural contractors are facing, according to National’s ag spokesperson David Bennett.
“Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor says he expects rural contractors generally require 350 foreign workers to get through the season. But contractors dispute this, saying many more will likely be needed to fill the labour shortage,’ claims Bennett.
“He also admitted the Government’s Covid-19 training programme is only training 40 people across the country to fill these highly-skilled roles.
“The Minister implied that if someone is capable of driving a van then they are qualified to drive a tractor. This is a simplistic view that doesn’t take into account the complexities of rural contracting and the high-value crops that are at stake. . .
Farms rich family heritage recognised – Molly Houseman:
A Taieri farm, owned by the same family for 150 years, has been given a New Zealand Century farm award.
Despite the cancellation of the usual awards dinner due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Janefield farm and its rich family history did not go unnoticed.
The 220ha farm is owned by father and son Ian and Simon Bathgate.
To be considered for the award, an application including photographs and documents supporting the farm’s history had to be submitted. . .
Selling makes no sense when you’re living the dream – Hugh Collins:
The drive between Arrowtown and Queenstown contains arguably some of the most sought-after high-country land in the South Island.
With no shortage of wealthy developers moving into the area in the past decade, many would be adamant the region’s rich farming days are numbered.
But for Malaghans Rd farmer Chris Dagg, it would be a cold day in hell if he ever chose to sell his 404ha sheep and beef farm beneath Coronet Peak.
“I’ve had countless people say ‘why don’t you just sell and go sit on a beach?,” Mr Dagg said when asked about selling. . .
Two pig farmers have succeeded in feeding one million bees after participating in a project that saw them turn over half their land to wildflowers.
Four years ago brothers Mark and Paul Hayward decided to farm 33ha – the equivalent of 83 football pitches – in the most wildlife positive way.
This involves planting nectar-rich blooms around the pig site at Dingley Dell Pork, Suffolk with the aim of embracing a sustainable way of farming. . .