Full credit to the Aussies for another Australia Day lamb promotion with lambassador Sam Kekovich and Lee Lin Chin:
Although it has offended some vegans.
Sunday February 15 is to be National Lamb Day, with this year marking the 133rd anniversary of one of the most significant milestones in New Zealand’s sheep meat industry.
On this day in 1882, William Davidson and Thomas Brydone achieved the remarkable, by launching the first shipment of frozen sheep meat from Port Chalmers in Otago on the Dunedin, bound for London.
The industry hope Kiwis here and around the world will recognise this incredible feat and celebrate it by enjoying lamb for dinner on February 15.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand CEO, Rod Slater says this day also gives New Zealanders an opportunity to recognise the hard work of our farmers and as a nation, a reason to be proud.
“So let us here in New Zealand celebrate with some delicious New Zealand lamb,” says Mr Slater.
“Not only are we celebrating the pioneers of the past 133 years, but also the direction our current agricultural industry is heading. We’re 100% behind all those in the industry.”
This first voyage was an important step in establishing our sheep and beef industry which now contributes $8.5 billion a year to the New Zealand economy.
The 5,000 sheep carcasses arrived in London 98 days later, in excellent condition (although not without incident, with all the challenges of refrigeration in those days) highlighting the size of the accomplishment. Prior to this, New Zealand mainly sold wool overseas as no one believed it possible to have a thriving meat export business.
The sheep on that first shipment were killed at Totara Estate a few kilometres south of Oamaru.
The Historic Places Trust (now called Heritage New Zealand) refurbished the buildings. It’s well worth a visit to learn about this important part of our history and get a sense of what life on the estate was like 133 years ago.
You can read more at NZ History Online.
If you’re wondering how to celebrate the day, here’s some inspiration from Australia’s lambassador, Sam Kekovich, :
SAM Kekovich is about to hit our TV screens again with his annual Australia Day Address to the Nation, his 10th year in a row as “Lambassador”.
In the past he has launched a music video, set out on “dip-lamb-attic” missions to encourage the rest of the world “to be more Australian” and sparked a trans-Tasman furore over his remarks about New Zealand’s former prime minister.
This year he breaks with entertainment convention and is working with both animals and children when he is seen thrusting a lamb chop into the hands of a child or “Generation Lamb” in an irreverent ad which also features a swipe at the remaining original Wiggle and a giant baby crushing a vegan barbecue. . .
A decade down the track Kekovich still takes the campaign with a grain of salt – and maybe a touch of pepper and some tomato sauce.
“I’ve always been fighting the good fight for lamb, there is no doubt about that,” said the former Australian Rules footballer on Thursday. . .
It’s Australia Day and Meat and Livestock Australia is continuing the campaign to encourage Aussies to eat more lamb.
Sadly Lambassador Sam Kekovich has been hit on the head.
He’s now suffering from Lambnesia:
If you’re concerned that you might be suffering from Lambnesia, you can take this test.
It determines whether or not you’re unAustralian – might it be a test we Kiwis prefer to fail?
It’s Australia Day.
Our cobbers and mates (is there a difference between the two?) across the Tasman are celebrating and don’t they do it well?
They have an Australia Day address – this year’s by Associate Professor Charles Teo Am, a first generation Australian.
You can listen to him delivering it and read a transcript at the link above. If you don’t have time for that, at least ponder this which applies just as much to New Zealanders:
. . . I would like to see this Australia Day as a turning point. I want my fellow Australians, those who were born here and those who have immigrated here, to pause and think of the lives that have been sacrificed for what we take for granted today. I want everyone who finds themselves angry and intolerant to think first about the misfortunes of those who are less fortunate…such as those with cancer. I want anyone who has come from another country to embrace the Australian way of life, it has served us well. I want all Australians to see how immigrants have contributed to our nation and to appreciate that a rich and prosperous country such as ours has a moral and global responsibility to share our resources. . .
They have the Australian of the Year :
The Australian of the Year 2012, Geoffrey Rush, has now celebrated 40 years as an Australian actor, achieving the rare international distinction of the ‘Triple Crown’ – an Oscar, a Tony and an Emmy. . .
The Senior Australian of the Year 2012, Laurie Baymarrwangga, is an extraordinary elder from the island of Murrungga in East Arnhem Land, Northern Territory. . .
The Young Australian of the Year 2012 is 22 year old engineering advocate Marita Cheng of Brunswick East whose leadership is changing the occupational landscape for women by encouraging girls to pursue engineering studies and careers. . .
Australia’s Local Hero 2012 is foster mother and carer Lynne Sawyers of Darbys Falls. Lynne has shared her home, her family and her love with more than 200 children. For 15 years, she has been on call to care for lost, abused and bewildered children in heartbreaking circumstances. . .
They have family and community celebrations and they have lamb with lambassador Sam Kekovich:
They seem to have a unity we have yet to achieve over celebrating a national day. But they also have a contrary view: see Australia Day/Invasion Day: Unity/Disunity at Larvatus Prodeo.
Sometimes I wish we were a bit more like the Aussies.
They could teach us how to celebrate our national day (that’s if we had one we could agree on) and how to promote our lamb at the same time:
You’ll find more in a similar vein from Sam Kekovich here.
The Aussies have got it: the only rescue package we need is wrapped in butchers’ paper . . .
Although vegetarians may prefer this from Busted Blonde.