On how farmers overcome diversity – Sally Rae:
Resilience is defined as the ability to withstand adversity and bounce back from difficult life events. Those in the rural sector, in particular, can face adversity from multiple sources and additional challenges to other sectors of society.
For high country farmer Jack Cocks, adversity came in the form of a life-threatening brain injury in March 2013.
Then 36 years old, the father-of-two got a massive headache; he recalls the pain as being unimaginable. He did not know what the cause was but he knew the outcome could potentially kill him.
His wife Kate phoned 111 and he was flown from their home at Mt Nicholas Station, on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, to Dunedin Hospital in the middle of the night. . .
Kaitiakitanga – the force propelling the Miraka marvel – Gerald Piddock:
A small company is taking a holistic approach in its business – and it’s paying off on the global stage.
A small central North Island milk company is proving it can do big things. Based in Mokai, north of Taupō, Miraka is showing it’s possible to operate with kaitiakitanga (meaning guardianship and protection or sustainability) and te ao Māori values, and punch above its weight on the global stage. Kaitiakitanga was not a strategy, it was embedded in Miraka values and everything it did, chief executive Karl Gradon says. It is one of Miraka’s key values. It means more than just being sustainable, he told farmers and industry leaders at the Primary Industries of New Zealand Summit in Auckland.
“That’s not the translation, it is much more holistic than sustainability and we are proving we can do this on a global scale.”
The $300 million dairy company based in Mokai just north of Taupō is a key player in the Māori economy, being one of its largest exporters. It collects milk from 100 local farms within a 120km radius of the factory, which gives it a farm-fresh advantage and results in superior quality products. . .
Firearms licence fears often unwarranted – Kathryn Wright:
One of the saddest — and most misinformed — reasons that has emerged in my research on young rural men and why they don’t seek help for mental heath issues, is a fear of losing their firearms licence, writes KATHRYN WRIGHT, rural counsellor.
Firearms are a serious topic and attitudes around them can be emotional and polarising.
Urban people tend to equate firearms with crime, whereas for rural people, they are an essential tool on the farm and beyond. Essential for quickly and humanely putting down sick stock, and for pest control.
The flip side of firearm use is that of recreational hunting, which several roles — killing wild animals to feed the family and then there is the social/emotional connection. . .
New Zealand’s food exporters, on whom this country depends for the bulk of its export earnings, may have to contend with fresh opposition from a new quarter. This is the school of “greenies” who preach the need for a revolution in creating food through precision fermentation: growing food in labs from microbes and water.
Leading this school in the United Kingdom is a formidable authority, George Monbiot, who argues that before long
“… most of our food will come neither from animals nor plants but from unicellular life”.
Monbiot and others like him argue it is “indisputable” that the farming revolution of the the 1950’s , with its widespread use of herbicides, pesticides and fungicides has waged war on nature. . .
Price rises across dairy commodities drove an annual increase in the value of exports for dairy products, Stats NZ said today.
In the year ended July 2022, the total export value of milk powder, butter, and cheese increased $2.8 billion (17 percent) to $18.8 billion, compared with the year ended July 2021.
“Dairy products had a strong finish to the export season with a continuation of high prices, especially in the second half of the season,” international trade statistics manager Alasdair Allen said.
The annual increase was heavily driven by exports of milk powder, up $1.1 billion to $10 billion and milk fats, including butter, up $1.1 billion to $3.8 billion from the year ended July 2021. . .
This week at an awards dinner held in Auckland the New Zealand Institute of Forestry (NZIF) announced the winners of its three most prestigious awards. The 2022 recipients are acknowledged for their diverse range of skills and experience. From hard graft and commitment at grass roots level, to high level policy planning and execution, and academic leadership.
Forestry continues to be a significant contributor to the New Zealand economy. NZIF President, James Treadwell says “the industry is working hard to benefit New Zealand, and we are particularly proud of the high calibre of this year’s award contenders.”
The Prince of Wales Sustainability Cup is awarded to Jake Palmer. This award recognises the achievements of a young New Zealand forest professional who lives and breathes the principles of sustainable forest management. In addition to the sound science based land stewardship, the awardee must demonstrate a commitment to raising the profile, of the wise use and conservation of forests and their ecosystems. Treadwell commented “This award was instigated by Prince Charles in 2017. It’s especially poignant timing this year following the death of Queen Elizabeth II. The mantel will pass to a new Prince of Wales, Prince William, to continue to champion environmentally positive forestry practices.” . .