Drought relief: Teen encourages farmers to ‘bare all’ – Anusha Bradley:
A Facebook page for Hawke’s Bay farmers struggling with severe drought is being credited with saving lives.
The lack of rain, lack of feed and trouble selling, or sending stock to the meat works because of Covid-19 restrictions is putting untold pressures on farmers.
But one young farmer’s efforts are providing a little relief to those in need.
Poppy Renton, 19, set up the Hawke’s Bay Drought page on Facebook, which has attracted more than 2000 members within a week of going live. .
The rolling hills on the Dasent family’s farm in rural Hawke’s Bay are a sea of brown as far as the eye can stretch.
Their family has farmed here in Maraekakaho for 113 years and while they’ve experienced droughts before, it’s never been like this.
“We’ve only had 13mls of rain over the whole of April,” says Rhea Dasent, who is the fourth generation of Dasents to farm the land. . .
New Zealand horticulture exports reached a record breaking $6.2 billion in the year ending June 2019 – an increase of $720 million from the previous year, and more than 10% of New Zealand’s total merchandise export income.
According to latest edition of Fresh Facts, published annually by Plant & Food Research and Horticulture New Zealand, the total New Zealand horticulture industry was valued at $9.5 billion in 2019. A significant $3.4 billion of this was fresh fruit exports, which grew by $54 million since 2018. Kiwifruit continues to be New Zealand’s largest fresh fruit export, valued at $2.3 billion in 2019. A whopping 545,800 tonnes of kiwifruit exports were sent overseas, two thirds of this to Asian countries. Apples were the second largest fresh fruit export, earning $829 million. New Zealand-bred varieties such as Jazz™, Envy™ and Pacific™ brand apples are popular with overseas consumers and made up a quarter of apple exports. . .
The Tractor and Farm Machinery Association (TAMA) is calling on the Government to take urgent measures to help its sector in the face of plummeting sales.
TAMA President John Tulloch has written to the Minister of Agriculture Damien O’Connor requesting action to encourage farmers and contractors to invest in farm productivity this year.
Specifically, TAMA wants the Government to review its low value asset write-off limit to bring it up to at least same level as Australia. The New Zealand Government has temporarily increased the threshold to $5,000 because of COVID-19 however the new Australian limit is $150,000. . .
A passion for farming has led to Anna & Ben Gillespie being named Regional Supreme Winners at the Otago Ballance Farm Environment Awards, run by the New Zealand Farm Environment Trust.
The awards champion sustainable farming and growing through a programme which sees one Regional Supreme Winner selected from each of the 11 regions involved. All Regional Supreme Winners are in the running for the Gordon Stephenson Trophy, with the winner of this national award to be announced at a later date.
Taking a strategic approach that plays to their strengths has paid off for this Omakau couple as they diversify and grow their beef and dairy grazing business. Highly conscious of the farm’s environmental impact, they’re anticipating future regulatory changes by taking action now. . .
A boutique waterfront Northland grazing farm with extensive private headland beach access to the Kaipara Harbour has been placed on the market for sale.
The 92.7-hectare farm at Whakapirau some 13-kilometres south-west of Maungaturoto has been previously used for grazing a herd of approximately 200 heifers and rising cattle – leased out at a rate of between $220 – $250 per hectare annually.
The freehold property consists of some 15 rolling paddocks surrounded by small hills. The paddocks are segregated by a mix of post and batten and electric wire fencing. Farm building infrastructure on the harbourside property consists of a two-bedroom block home which has beach access via a formed track. . .