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Integrity community media


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May 2018 Edition

Strong community focus at Morikau Station

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Farm foundation provides ideal career start Page 8–9


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May 2018


Students take part in agri-food careers day

Integrity community media

A fun event, held to connect students with career opportunities in the agri-food sector, saw almost 300 students from Hawera Intermediate take part.

The Taranaki Farming Lifestyles is published with pride by Integrity Community Media, a privately owned NZ company. Phone: 0800 466 793 Email: General Manager: Deb Wright | | 021 639 696 Editorial: Ann Morgan, Denise Gunn Advertising: Teresa Steed, Monique McKenzie, Tania Wilson Accounts: Distribution: Laurie Willetts Website:


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Tori Turner from the Taranaki Veterinary Centre gets students excited about veterinary science

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The forest industry has invested millions making our forests safer to work in. Most of our harvesting operators are working inside specialised machines, instead of wielding chainsaws like they all used to. Our serious injury rate in forests has fallen. We put a high priority on learning from our mistakes. No other primary industry makes more of a safety effort than we do.

The event was part of a national project to get students from 100 schools on to sheep and beef farms. Red Meat Profit Partnership (RMPP) funded the event, and it was delivered by New Zealand Young Farmers. “We want to get the industry on the radar of students and teachers, so they’re aware of the opportunities,” said RMPP’s Di Falconer. The entire school took part in eight hands-on modules at the Hawera Showgrounds. “Students learned about the science behind artificial insemination and how drone technology is being used to muster sheep,” said Deb Kingma, from NZ Young Farmers. “In one of the modules, they even got to blind taste test six different types of meat. In this case, we brought the farms to the kids,” she said. Two young Taranaki veterinarians, Tori Turner and Lucy Webster, used jaw bones and preserved cattle body parts to get students excited about careers in veterinary science. They told students

a career as a veterinarian can be an exciting challenge. “It’s like a bit of a puzzle because humans can say where they’re in pain, whereas animals can’t,” said Tori. “So we have to do a full examination to find out what’s going on with an animal, which can be quite difficult at times.” Tori works at the Taranaki Veterinary Centre. He urged students to develop an interest in science if they want to be a vet. “Studying all three sciences — chemistry, biology and physics — will help you get into Massey University where vets train,” he said. Teacher, Larni Martin, said the kids were really engaged. “The artificial insemination module was a hit among students. They all had a laugh and many were quite curious about reproduction.” The module was a favourite for student Juana Potts-Julian. “Today was a lot of fun,” she said. “I’m really keen to get a job in the dairy industry.”


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National merit award for Taranaki dairy farm manager The 2018 Taranaki Dairy Trainee of the Year, Andrew Trolove, won the DairyNZ Practical Skills Award at the recent New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards (NZDIA) held in Invercargill. Andrew grew up on the family farm that he now manages. When he finished secondary school, Andrew worked as a sales representative for an agriculture company and also travelled overseas. He returned to the 210ha farm near Opunake last year. A herd of 610 cows are milked on the property. Entering the Dairy Industry Awards gave Andrew the opportunity to benchmark himself against others in the industry. “Being on a family farm, I wish to prove to myself that I have the ability to succeed on my own merits,” said Andrew. “I’m really proud of making it through my first spring on the farm, which was also the wettest on record, followed by a very challenging dry summer. “The farming weather conditions have been the hardest this region has ever faced.” Andrew also sees the awards as an opportunity to network with not only farmers but other people in the industry. Dan and Gina Duncan from Northland were named the 2018 New Zealand Share Farmers of the Year, Gerard Boerjan from Hawke’s Bay-Wairarapa became the 2018 New Zealand Dairy Manager of the Year, and Simone Smail from Southland-Otago was announced the 2018 New Zealand Dairy Trainee

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Andrew Trolove, pictured here at the 2018 Taranaki Dairy Industry Awards, won a merit award at the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards

of the Year. NZDIA general manager, Chris Keeping, said there had been a few trends amongst the 33 finalists competing for honours in the awards programme this year. “The finalists are acutely aware of the importance of biosecurity, and health and safety with regards to

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May 2018


Strong community focus

at Morikau Station by Denise Gunn Morikau Station won three categories at the recent Horizons Ballance Farm Environment Awards. Each award reflected the combined efforts of the station’s manager Hamish Thompson and his wife Katrina, staff, contractors, board members, shareholders and community.


he station covers 5,567ha in total (2,650ha effective), stretching from Huruharama (also known as Jerusalem) to Ranana (London) in the Whanganui River Valley. “About 5% of the property is undulating to rolling, 24% is rolling to moderately steep country, 67% is considered steep hill country, with the remaining 4% being steep to very steep gorges and hard hill country,” said Hamish. Owned by the Morikaunui Incorporation, Morikau Station is governed by seven board members representing 6,500 shareholders. Many of the shareholders who live near the station carry out casual work on the property taking up pole planting, gorse spraying, tree pruning, shearing and docking.

“In the past three years, we’ve put just under $450,000 each year, back into the local community.” Hamish has spent most of his life hill country farming around the Whanganui and Hunterville districts. “I was born and bred a farmer; spent three-quarters of my life in very remote hill country farm locations,” he said. Katrina takes care of the office work, health and safety, the house, and the couple’s blended family of four daughters and one son. Ballance Farm Environment Awards (BFEA) judges noted the robust health and safety policy, and promotion of staff training. The couple have made huge strides on the property in the two-and-a-half years they have been there. When Hamish took on the station manager

Morikau Station manager Hamish Thompson and his wife Katrina

position, the property was running 21,000 stock units. “It’s now 28,500 and we’re hoping to expand that to 40,000 in the future, by leasing more underdeveloped Maori land.” The 60:40 sheep to cattle ratio has recently altered from 70:30. Hamish said the property contains a range of land management units,

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which enables a multitude of farming enterprises to be carried out. This year the station is running 12,500 ewes and 1,800 hoggets to the ram, as well as 1,700 dry hoggets. Ewes and early lambs are sold to CR Grace Taylor Preston. Contracted lambs are sold to AFFCO. A Charolais/Angus terminal bull is used over 930 breeding cows. For low

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The 60:40 sheep to cattle ratio has recently altered from 70:30

Ewes and early lambs are sold to CR Grace Taylor Preston whilst contracted lambs are sold to AFFCO

birthweight, the 220 R1 Angus/Hereford heifers are mated with a Hereford bull. All weaners are retained to 18 months. The bull unit is carrying 400 bulls for 2018–2019. Hamish said 65% of all stock are finished on Morikau. Since Hamish took over as manager, more than $2.4 million has been spent on development and improvements. This includes $480,000 following the 2015 flood. A large eroding gully has been fenced off, with 600 poplar and willow poles planted each year. Other improvements include: 30km of fencing with subdivision of waterways, riparian planting, yards, weighing facilities, holding paddocks, and water systems. Around 500ha of gorse land has also been sprayed. Manuka areas are being

retired for regeneration and beekeepers have 500 hives on-site. “There’s effectively 100ha of wetland and fenced off gullies now, as well as 2,187ha of bush, that’s retired, some of those bush areas have large numbers of kiwi.” said Hamish. Pests and predators are managed with culling goats through Nga Whenua Rahui, and annual maintenance of bait stations for stoats and rats. This is in addition to Horizons Regional Council’s possum control programme. Morikau Station receives an annual average rainfall of between 1,150mm– 1,450mm. The summers can be very hot and humid, sometimes reaching 40C. “We have very wet winters with snow to our hill country, lower country very

warm, and winter has low sunshine hours with four hours a day, due to fog,” said Hamish. The climate creates animal health challenges, with exposure to high levels of facial eczema and a high worm burden. Dusty tracks have led to viral pneumonia, and the humidity levels cause fly strike. Short-term plans for Morikau include paying back debt and the cost of production. There is also focus on attention to detail with breeding and finishing stock. Community involvement on the station is an important tool to creating local employment and commitment to ongoing training. This was another area that stood out to the BFEA judges.

More environmental fencing of waterways and swamplands, along with riparian planting is also planned. Hamish would like to see the station become more sustainable and paying a better dividend to shareholders. He said long-term plans include being debt-free, but going forward out of cash surplus. “To leave the station in good stead for the future generations to carry on with.” Hamish and Katrina Thompson received the People in Agriculture Award, the Predator Free Farm Award, and the Horizons Regional Council Award for the integration of trees. “I am only a caretaker of the people’s land, what we put in is what we get back.” says Hamish.



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This is part two of Cheryl Eldridge’s story of being passionate about a rare breed of grey sheep and New Zealand wool. With her husband Barry, she has diversified the farming activities on their property Stansborough Station and developed the breed, which is now called ‘Stansborough Grey’.


heryl and her two sons personally sort and class every fleece into three shades of grey as the sheep are shorn. This is done twice annually to keep the quality at its best for textile production. Cheryl has a background in the creative arts, along with daughter Kiri, and designs all the fabrics, accessories and finished product range. “The wool comes in dark, mid and silver grey, and within these preselected tones there is a whole spectrum, which

creates the marvelous, almost metallic sheen,” says Cheryl. “I started working alone, in a shed with one loom, and now have six historic looms and a wide blanket loom, and we are training a couple of apprentices to pass on the knowledge we have. “The yarn is better spun as fine worsted, and then it is combed to enhance the lustre. The demand for the fibre is such, that we cannot supply generally because all our yarn is used in-house.”

Stansborough station is a family business and is run with the help of the Eldridges son, Gavin

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their own strands of history, dating from the early 1890s. “They are amongst the first mechanical looms ever designed and add, rather than detract, from the general impression of intense individual involvement in production. Depending on the complication of each different weave, it can take two days to hand thread and set up each loom before weaving,” says Cheryl. “This intensity of involvement is in all parts of the process between farm and final products that are totally distinctive. Our inspiration for designs come from the environment in which the animals are farmed, tree barks, leaf forms and stunning vistas. Our team have spent years developing the many complicated undulating twill derived and other weaves, and our resulting fabric has a unique handmade and natural feel, quite different to other mass-produced commercial products.” The fabric has beautiful draping qualities, enhanced by the careful — sometimes created by hand — finishing to emphasise the lustre, drape and handling. “We have travelled the world and opened the markets up and we do a lot of high-end quality designs for international clients, but 50 per cent of our business is still national.” Throws, ties, scarves, wraps and cloaks have been fashioned from the gleaming Stansborough fabric. “We have worked a lot with the movie industry: including producing garments and items for the Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, The Chronicles of

Narnia, Spartacus, Pete’s Dragon, The Water Horse and Kidnapped. It has been an honour to present New Zealand creations to the world. I believe wool has been underrated as a natural product — we could be using the lower grade wool across the country to make healthy and sustainable insulation for every home and slippers for children in schools and the elderly. “The value of it being breathable and environmentally friendly, safe, fire resistant and healthy is important to many people. We are looking after the planet long-term by using natural fibres — people want things that will last in their homes for years to come and have something to snuggle up and you get natural comfort from wool — unlike man made fibres. You can use so many different types of wool — it just needs good imagination — our grey wool can be mixed with other fibres, including Alpaca and bamboo, and we want to use hemp in the future. “Wool absorbs energy and when used in carpet, you don’t get the gases that carpet glues used in synthetic gives off. Cheryl has worked furnished super yachts, boutique lodges and designer homes in New Zealand and overseas. Their designer blanket range has been gifted to VIPs worldwide, and has the backing of Campaign for Wool — led by Prince Charles. The Stansborough label is now recognised on the world stage for its innovative and highly prized, sustainable, textile creations. “We had no idea the results would be seen on cinema screens around the world.


May 2018

Alpacas are also a feature on the station where their fleece is mixed with wool to create a variety of yarns

“The Lord of the Rings movies was our ultimate challenge, but now exporting to growing high-end markets is our biggest achievement. We are pleased we found that flock of grey sheep, now registered as a wool breed in their own

right, ‘Stansborough Greys’, when the downturn happened in farming in 1991 “The many years of selective breeding and hard work has certainly paid off and it is wonderful to take New Zealand to the world.”

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PROVIDES IDEAL CAREER START Growing up on a Manawatu dairy farm gave Stacey Deacon a solid foundation for working in the dairy industry. This year Stacey won the FMG Most Promising Entrant in the dairy manager section at the Taranaki Dairy Industry Awards. ⊲ by Denise Gunn


tacey’s parents were sharemilkers before converting their Manawatu run-off into a dairy farm 10 years ago. The skills and knowledge she picked up paid off when at the age of 14, and while studying at secondary school, Stacey began relief milking in several sheds. This work eventually led to a full-time farm assistant position for a couple of seasons. Three years ago, Stacey moved to her current 2IC position on John and Janine Moore’s 154ha-effective farm near Stratford. A full-time worker is also employed on the farm. With the encouragement and support of her employers, Stacey started training for AI. For the past two years she has

also worked as an AI technician for Livestock Improvement Corporation (LIC). Stacey found AI training to be a big learning curve, working out time management between farms and the importance of good communication skills. At the peak of this season, a herd of 370 Friesian/crossbred cows were milked on the Moore’s farm. An estimated production figure of 160,000kgMS is set to May 31. The farm operates on a DairyNZ Production System Two, using 150 tonnes of PKE blend for in-shed feeding. PKE is the only supplement purchased. “Normally 50 tonnes of silage and hay is made on-farm,” said Stacey.


Stacey won the FMG Most Promising Entrant in the dairy manager section at this year’s Taranaki Dairy Industry Awards

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A herd of 370 Friesian/crossbred cows were milked on the Moore’s farm at the peak of this season “With the extreme weather this season, we’ve only been able to make baleage and hay.” The past season’s drought has been a challenge too. “We have been milking 16 hours since December 20 to help maintain cow condition and production.” Stacey said due to the farm’s location on Ngaere swamp, winter and spring can get quite wet. “Paddocks are monitored carefully to try and avoid too much pasture and soil damage, along with animal health.”

The 22-year-old’s love of animals and enjoyment of the outdoors developed at a young age. She decided working in the dairy industry was an ideal career choice to combine both passions. Studies through Primary ITO, Taratahi Agricultural Training College, and LIC have furthered her knowledge. “I’m proud of every achievement from gaining all my qualifications, AI and the industry awards,” she said. Although Stacey has a busy work and farm schedule, she makes time to


Stacey would like to be 50:50 sharemilking within 10 years regularly attend the Lions Den Gym and Fitness Centre in Stratford. “I do weight training to improve my strength, I also love travelling overseas and visiting friends and family.” she said. Stacey is a member of the Central Taranaki Young Farmers too. It was through the encouragement of a couple of fellow members that she decided to enter the Taranaki Dairy Industry Awards. “I wanted to challenge myself and see where I stand within the industry going forward in the future,” she said.

In 2016 Stacey entered the Taranaki Dairy Industry Awards for the first time, reaching the top five in the Trainee of the Year category. With the view of looking towards a manager position in a few years, Stacey is continuing studying through Primary ITO. She plans to start a production management course, followed by a diploma in agribusiness. “I would like this to lead on to contract milking and then 50:50 sharemilking within 10 years.”

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May 2018


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Understanding osteoarthritis by John Arts

Part 2 Last week we saw that damage to specialised cartilage cells called chondrocytes was the first step in the development of osteoarthritis (OA). Research suggests that chondrocytes can be damaged by physical damage from accidents or gradually probably from insufficient dietary antioxidants. Cartilage is a tough matrix that includes living chondrocytes. The matrix of cartilage is a combination of proteins (mostly collagen), glycosaminoglycan (GAG) and water. The most abundant GAG is chondroitin sulphate. In my opinion, adding correct amounts of high-grade chondroitin is the single most important part of OA therapy. Cartilage is 80% water, which is why it acts as a shock absorber. GAG such as chondroitin readily attracts water. This is an important reason to stay well hydrated — a real problem with our ageing population. Cartilage then has two main components. What you see is the tough cartilage matrix. What you don’t see is the tiny chondrocytes tucked away in tiny cocoons called lacunae. When working properly, chondrocytes act like repair kits for cartilage. They actively

secrete new cartilage matrix when damaged or worn. My nutritional therapy for OA is firstly based on protecting chondrocytes by adding antioxidants. These include curcumin from turmeric but others such as trace minerals like selenium and grape seed extract. We then add compounds that help stimulate chondrocytes to make cartilage especially chondroitin but also glucosamine. I have one client who had a damaged shoulder and hip. Both caused him real problems. We increased antioxidants and added my joint complex, and he reports he is largely pain-free. I like to initially add 1500mg of both chondroitin and glucosamine with about 400mg of 95% curcumin extract (from turmeric). This is usually sufficient to start the healing process and often bring significant relief. John Arts (B.Soc.Sci, Dip Tch, Adv. Dip.Nut.Med) is a nutritional medicine practitioner and founder of Abundant Health Ltd. For questions or advice contact John on 0800 423559 or email Join his full weekly newsletter at

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Fonterra’s Brightwater dairy factory is set to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 25 per cent following an industry first move that will significantly reduce the site’s reliance on coal. Thanks to funding support from the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority, conversion is about to get underway on Brightwater’s existing coal boiler, adding capacity to burn wood biomass to generate steam. The move will cut emissions from the factory by around 2,400 tonnes a year — roughly the same as taking 530 cars off the road. Fonterra chief operating officer global operations, Robert Spurway, says the move to a co-fired boiler decreases reliance on fossil fuels and is a significant step towards achieving Fonterra’s emission reduction targets. “Last year we joined forces with the Ministry for the Environment to develop a roadmap to a low emissions future, which included a commitment to undertake a demonstration of co-firing wood biomass with coal at one of our sites,” he said. “Now, with the support of EECA, we are putting our co-firing strategy into action. Brightwater’s transition to a lower emission energy source is a tangible step toward achieving our target of reducing our Global Operations emissions by 30 per cent by 2030, and our longer-term goal of net zero emissions by 2050.” EECA business group manager market engagement, Greg Visser, says the

Robert Spurway, Fonterra chief operating officer global operations

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May 2018


Who are you going to call?

Considering the contractors The farm environment can be a hazardous one, and health and safety considerations extend to all personnel involved in agricultural and pastoral activities. This obviously includes contractors and subcontractors who play a major role on farms. Farm owners’ and managers’ responsibilities extend to the health and safety of everyone who

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works on the farm — full-time, parttime, casual employees, contractors and their employees, subcontractors and consultants. Worksafe NZ has laid down guidelines for both principal and contractor. Contractors and subcontractors have the same duty of care to their employees as any other employer. Contractors need to know what the principal’s (farmer’s) health and safety procedures are so they can assess their employees’ safety on-site. Farm owners and managers must work with contractors to make sure they share a common understanding of the hazards that workers face and how the site will be made safe.


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“Such things as forecast drought and the lower forecast milk price could see some farmers under huge pressure,” says Rural Contractors NZ president, Steve Levet. “However, there are things on-farm that have to be done — no matter what — such as supplementary feed and crop harvesting. Contractors are professionals and are especially set-up to help out when these jobs need to be done on-farm.” Rural Contractors is the only national association and the leading advocate for rural contractors in the country, and while accrediting members to provide assurance to farmers of the qualifications and reliability of its members, the organisation also monitors central and local government policies, plans and proposals on behalf of its membership. It also maintains close relations with a wide number of organisations, government departments and other national bodies. This assures best practice when the contractor, staff and machinery move onto the farm. RCNZ represent the interests of contractors engaged

in a wide range of activities such as land development, drainage, fencing, cultivation and planting, harvesting of crops, highway vegetation, parks, reserves and landscaping, chemical application, sheep dipping and direct drilling. RCNZ monitors central and local government policies, plans and proposals on behalf of their membership. They also maintain close relations — and lobby on behalf of their members — with a wide number of organisations, government departments and other national bodies. Affiliated contractors can be found on the RCNZ website.


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May 2018

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Those important jobs

by Ann Morgan

When it comes to owning rural property, the responsibilities and maintenance can seem endless, and when ensuring things are done correctly, it is best to enlist the help of qualified professionals when the job at hand is out of your experience. With winter fast approaching and the weather becoming more unhelpful, now is a good time to check the state of your trees and check your waterways are clear. Hiring an experienced contractor means you have access to all of their knowledge — not just for land-clearing issues, but often tree maintenance and removal, drain and waterway clearing as well as other miscellaneous tasks at hand, which can often be dealt with by the one person. Have the contractor come in and check your large trees for safety, particularly if you are relatively new to the rural lifestyle. Removing or trimming them before the wet weather hits can save a lot of damage and stress. Falling trees can endanger your life as well as your livestock, break fences or buildings and block waterways meaning the job

becomes much more major and costly. Bringing in a contractor to help with silage, lucerne or haymaking requirements can save time and money on equipment. They can help from the cutting to the wrapping and stacking, freeing you up to take care of your everyday jobs. Clearing drains is easy when someone has the right machinery and experience to keep your water flowing throughout your land. A blocked creek can cause intense flooding and animal loss not to mention the risk of damage to equipment and buildings. Keeping waterways clear from debris such as fallen trees or sludge build up helps maintain more than just the water channel, it helps avoid many a negative experience. Installing new power poles and the like is also a job a contractor can help with as well as preparing an underpass

or creating a new crossing for stock and vehicles. Asking those in your local area for recommendations of

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May 2018


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Working with balance by Ann Morgan

Health and safety is something we are all aware of and keeping our health at an optimum level is important to everyone in our lives including staff, contractors, neighbours, friends and family. Taking care of ourselves and those around us should be our number one priority and ensuring we take time out needs to be a regular thing, and there are a variety of things people are doing off-farm during the various cycles of the



year, which in turn helps keep our minds that much clearer. DairyNZ research shows there are key contributors to a person’s overall wellness and it will be a different experience that will work for each person.



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Some people enjoy catching up with other farmers and see how they are doing things differently and have a healthy discussion over farm systems to keep on top of their game — whilst others attend events. Fishing is often referred to as a calming activity and is on many a calendar at least once a month, even if it is just for a few hours. The costs are minimal, and you can go alone, with friends or family. The same goes for surfing — a few hours out amongst the waves is often referred to as exhilarating

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and calming. Hunting, playing sports or going for a bike ride with the family are also recommended activities. Some families eat dinner around the table most nights without technology present and they each share one good thing and one bad thing they experienced that day. This provides an opportunity to know what each person is up to. Have a budget and plan set in advance, so you know your financial position and if necessary, discuss succession plans and the future of the farm, so your family know where things are headed. During calving or lambing, some people stop and spend a few minutes each day watching the babies play whilst others walk on the farm as often as possible. If you are out for the day, have good sustenance with you in the form of fruit and nuts, sandwiches and healthy food and don’t forget the water or health tonic to stay hydrated. No matter how busy things get, stay connected to your friends and family and have time for a laugh with mates. Having good friends and support ensures the not so good times are easier to handle. If you or someone you know needs help, your local doctor is a good place to start and don’t forget the Rural Support Trust is there for everyone and is run by local people who are well-networked and trained — phone 0800 787 254.

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May 2018

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Look after your plumbing All farms and rural properties at one time or another have waterworks issues, maintenance or upgrading of equipment necessities and engaging a master plumber is your best guarantee of quality workmanship. Dairy systems, water pumps, drain laying, septic systems, irrigation, water tank installation and household plumbing all need expert knowledge. No matter how skilled one is at maintenance in the home, and contrary to what some people think, plumbers do far more than just sink and toilet repairs — they work to ensure your home is protected from water and plumbing related accidents, like pipes bursting in winter or flooding. With their expert knowledge of plumbing systems, they can run a plumbing inspection on your home, cowshed or other situation and come with the tools needed to fix the issue then and there. If you have a leak or plumbing fault, instead of messing around with your own pipes and systems, a professional will know exactly where to start looking and how to fix it. If a leak is a full-blown flooding or burst pipe, they will also know how to change the entire pipeline, and know the safety procedures to undertake. Hiring a professional means that the job is done efficiently, without wasted

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time and money. Master Plumbers is a national membership organisation that represents excellence in the plumbing, gasfitting and drain-laying trades. It started back in 1901 when a dedicated group of plumbers got together to ensure the very highest standards in New Zealand’s plumbing industry. Today there are 17 associations and branches up and down the country, and the organisation are committed to nurturing future generations of skilled tradespeople through the Master Plumbers-owned Masterlink group apprentice training scheme. The ongoing Quality Assurance review process considers everything from a member business’s health and safety systems to its terms and conditions of trade and employment contracts. Master Plumbers also provide members with a wide range of resources


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May 2018


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Transporting stock safely When it comes to transporting stock, there are a number of things to remember, which will make the process as easy as possible for all involved. When hiring a carrier, ensure they know the regulations and that they keep their truck and any relevant equipment clean and free from disease, so infections are not spread from property to property. Where necessary make sure all stock being transported are NAIT registered, and all relevant paperwork is available. Dealing with waste and keeping effluent off the roads is one of the major responsibilities from the farmer, the stockbroker, the transport company, those at the destination and local and regional councils. Ensure that the effluent tanks are empty before setting off. It is important to keep stock off green feed for at least four hours before they are loaded onto the truck. The law takes animal welfare very seriously and has strict rules relating to animal transport and suffering. The person in charge must examine the selected stock prior to transport, to ensure that all animals are fit and healthy for transportation. All animals must be able to stand and bear weight on all four limbs and

be fit enough to withstand the journey without suffering unreasonable or unnecessary pain or distress unless a current veterinary certificate as to the fitness of the animal for transport is completed. Any animal likely to give birth during transport must not be selected. All infected Mycoplasma bovis properties under a Restricted Place Notice require permits to move animals between properties and to slaughter. The permits require the truck to be cleaned and disinfected at the end of each movement. Controls set in place include a comprehensive cleaning and disinfection protocol which has been provided to the driver by the Ministry for Primary Industries. This protocol ensures that vehicles pose a negligible biosecurity risk. All vehicles are being cleaned and disinfected on leaving the properties. Vehicles carrying animals to the meat processing premises — are disinfecting on exit, going directly to the meat processor (not to other farms) and then being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected


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at the plant on completing the job. New Zealand Livestock Transport Assurance has been set up at the instigation of some of New Zealand’s major processing companies: AFFCO New Zealand, South Pacific Meats Ltd, Canterbury Meat Packers, Riverlands Meats, Ovation New Zealand and Silver Fern Farms. The NZLTA programme’s purpose is to ensure that all livestock being transported to processing plants are treated humanely and with proper regard for their welfare, meeting the requirements of the New Zealand Code of Animal Welfare. All trucking operators

transporting stock to these company’s plants must be a member of the NZLTA. Their drivers must be trained by an NZLTA-approved trainer and registered with the NZLTA. To ensure that operators and drivers continue to meet the NZLTA’s standards — audits of drivers, vehicles and animals will be carried out at processor sites by the processing company and AsureQuality staff. When engaging a stock transporter, ensure they are up-to-date and aware of the relevant processes required for moving your animals.

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May 2018

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A passion for engineering Adam Kingston, of Kingston Engineering Ltd, started in 2007 working for a small and successful family-owned company specialising in the design and construction of dairy sheds, in the Manawatu region. “It was here that I developed my passion for engineering,” he says. “I remember working on a project restoring an old milking shed and transforming something that was rundown and dysfunctional into a modern, smooth-running system. “The look on the farmer’s face and the satisfaction of a job well done was when I realised that I wanted to help other farmers in the same way. In 2017, Kingston Engineering was born.” It was a time for new beginnings, and Adam, his family and business relocated to Taranaki. Based in Stratford and covering the wider Taranaki region, with services including: • Agricultural repairs and fabrication • Mobile engineering services • General fabrication, and • Dairy shed repairs and alterations “Kingston Engineering focusses on quality workmanship, efficiency and dedication, to provide the best possible

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outcome for our customers,” says Adam. “Contact me today to have a no obligation chat and see how I can help you with your farming needs — no job is too small.” Call Adam Kingston 027 205 5966 or email

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May 2018


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Fire season ready

by Ann Morgan

Creating an atmosphere of warmth and comfort during the colder months with a roaring fire is something that has been enjoyed by many Kiwi families for generations.



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Making sure you enjoy a toasty, warm, dry home when the frosts and rain kick in means taking care of few jobs in advance. If you have a fireplace, collecting or purchasing wood is one job that needs to be taken care of early enough to ensure dry burning fuel, or you can source a modern appliance such as a heat pump. Either way the entire process, from logs to embers, or clicking the switch is often covered by local specialists. Living in a rural area, there is always the option of taking down old, unwanted or dangerous trees but the cost of tools to accomplish the task may mean hiring an arborist or contractor is more beneficial, not just for cost saving but also safety. If you decide to do it yourself, ensure you have a good chainsaw, and the size, power, sharpness of the chain and weight are all correct for the job at hand. Talk to the experts at your local dealership as they often advise homeowners, farmers, and forestry professionals on the best products available. Don’t forget the safety gear,

including glasses, ear protection, chaps, gloves and safety helmet as well. It is possible to turn leftover waste into valuable mulch and chip for garden beds and using a portable chipper with a petrol engine, should be all you need for the farm or lifestyle block. These generally chomp through brush and twigs with ease, again, ensure you know the safety regulations as you don’t want to lose a finger. A variety of mechanical and electrical splitters are also available to quarter wood, which then needs to be stacked in a dry place to help you get the most warmth out of your fuel.

Remember the fireplace itself, needs to be swept and checked by a qualified chimney sweep, a member of the NZ Home Heating Association or a licensed plumber. Failure to do so could void your insurance, so an annual check is always best. The old-fashioned portable gas heaters are no longer considered a safe system to use for many reasons. For options on electric heating systems, see your local heating specialists for advice. These are effective and keep houses and offices warm, dry and at an even temperature all winter long.

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May 2018

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QUICK INDEX CONTRACTORS CG Fleming Ltd ............................................................................06 761 8117 GB Contracting ......................................................................... 0274 526 717 Holes “R” Us Drilling ............................................................... 0800 76 98 98 JFM Contracting...........................................................................06 752 4558 Kingston Engineering Ltd ........................................................ 027 205 5955 BUILDING & PROPERTY MAINTENANCE A J Greaves Power (Linepower) .............................................. 0800 546 376 CBD Carpet Mill ........................................................................ 0800 255 855 Craig Corrigan Electrical Ltd ................................................... 027 207 7775 D.R (Jack) Gray Ltd ...06 757 8012 New Plymouth/06 278 0129 Hawera EnD Electrical ..................................................027 441 0032/06 765 0330 Eltham Building Supplies ...........................................................06 764 8616 Flying Trowelz ..............................................................................06 755 2204 Guthrie Bowron Stratford ..................................................06 765 7488 Greaves Electrical..................................................................... 0800 311 111 Gloma Carpet Cleaners ..................................................06 278 5831 Guthrie Bowron New Plymouth .................................................06 757 5699 H.E.L Electrical Services .............................................................06 756 7529 Houghtons Plumbing Heating & Gas........................................06 278 8883 Ingrams Bin & Skip Hire ............................................................06 278 4786 Johnny Neil Building Ltd .............................................................06 272 6564 Laser Electrical Hawera ..................................................06 278 3098 Newton Gordge Joinery ..............................................................06 751 5065 Newlan Refrigeration ..................................................................06 755 4851 Pzazz Building..............................................................................06 758 3180 PGD Services ...............................................................................06 753 5588 Revive Building Recyclers ..........................................................021 727 433 Tool Hire Taranaki .......................................................................06 757 8665 TMT Building Limited ............................................................... 027 308 3894 Value Building Supplies ..................................................06 759 1076 DAIRY & EFFLUENT Chris Perrett Electrical Solutions ........................................... 027 515 5442 FlexiTanks.....................................................................................07 829 5940 Sinclair Electrical & Refrigeration Stratford ............................06 764 8084 Taranaki Refrigeration ................................................................06 759 0092 FASHION, HEALTH & BEAUTY Egmont Repair & Manufacture .................................................06 765 6383 Vivian Street Osteopaths............................................................06 758 7078 FORESTRY P.D. Fleming Logging Ltd ......................................................... 027 630 9922 ALL VECHICLES/ FARM MACHINERY Air Taranaki Car Storage ................................06 754 7503/027 210 5315 Central Taranaki Automotive .....................................................06 765 7170 Fieldmaster ............................................................................... 0800 500 275 Mufflers NZ Ltd............................................................................06 754 4166 PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Computer Support ................................................................... 027 441 1461 FARMING & SUPPLIES FBT - Freight & Bulk Transport 0800 ......... 0800 432 866/027 705 4224 Peter Sole Transport .......................................06 754 8454/027 443 1809 Supa Concrete Products Ltd ................................................... 027 484 4784



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May 2018



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Securing exports partnership The signing of a partnership between New Zealand Customs and dairy exporter Synlait Milk Limited that will see the company joining the Customs Secure Exports Scheme has been welcomed.

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Customs Minister, Meka Whaitiri, visited the Synlait head office in Dunsandel, near Christchurch where she presented the certificate of partnership signed by Customs and Synlait. “New Zealand’s SES scheme gives members greater certainty at international borders and ensures minimal delay, and this partnership is an endorsement of the exporter’s standards of security on its chain of supply,” she said. “Synlait is one of the country’s most successful dairy businesses with a range of value-added products, including infant formula and milk powders. I am pleased they have joined this partnership, and I am confident they will find real benefits in the scheme.”




Meka Whaitiri, Customs Minister with Rob Stowell general manager of Synlait Supply chain

Exporters approved for the SES have risk management plans that assure other countries that their goods are packed and transported securely. Customs currently has SES agreements with the United States, China, Australia, Japan and Korea. The SES is voluntary.

“One of the government’s key priorities is to strengthen international trade and support New Zealand exporters like Synlait. “We want to work with importers and exporters to find opportunities to make maximise the benefits for our trading partners.”

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Mycoplasma bovis update The tracking of cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis shows that more farms than previously expected are likely to be affected by the disease. “While we always expected to find more properties, officials tell me that the numbers will likely exceed their earlier modelling. That modelling work is continuing, and we will have a clearer picture in the next couple of weeks,’ says Biosecurity Minister, Damien O’Connor. “MPI is continuing an intense programme of work with farming sector groups about the next best steps in the response — including containment and phased eradication.” Testing to date shows all infected properties are connected in some way. The tracing of Mycoplasma bovis is made harder by the poor use of the national animal tracing system. “We could have tracked this more quickly if the system had been used properly. The previous Government’s inaction, lack of enforcement and promotion of NAIT has created major issues for hunting down Mycoplasma bovis. We will make changes to the NAIT system. “A cull of 22,000 cows is currently underway, with nearly half, 11,000 animals, destroyed. That cull is

necessary to reduce the diseases spread through the national herd. I know farmers whose properties are under control restrictions face a difficult time. “I am working hard to ensure the Government and sector make the best possible decision with the best possible information regarding Mycoplasma bovis. I expect that decision will come in the next few weeks.” Farmers should ensure any compensation claims they make related to Mycoplasma bovis are accurate, as it makes the process quicker. MPI and DairyNZ have boosted the number of people working directly with farmers to assist in that process. “As of the beginning for May, 38 farms were active infected places, and another 40 were under Restricted Place Notice — considered highly likely to become infected. “Nearly 1,700 properties are of interest because of risk events such as animal movements, the supply of milk for animal feed or because they are adjacent to infected properties,” says Mr O’Connor.

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May 2018



Classic rock solo by Andy Bryenton

Of the entire new Holden Commodore range — a noteworthy first departure from the days of Australian design and production, but one with its own sense of style — there’s one vehicle, which stands out as still forcefully Kiwi. Or, to be generous, a bit Aussie too. That car is the Holden Commodore Tourer, a four-wheel drive, V6 turbo powered station wagon which bucks all kinds of trends. Firstly, it’s a station wagon in a world gone mad for SUVs. Sports utilities from the tiny to the gargantuan roam the roads in packs these days



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— Nissan’s catalogue, for example, features two sports cars but a whole family of crossovers and full-fledged S-Us. We have been told for some time now that the station wagon is headed for the scrap heap of history, and that the big four-door sedan is following so close behind you’d think it was being towed. Not so, says Holden, boldly putting forward a brand new car in 2018, which manages to evoke those summer holidays in the back of the Berlina while being utterly light years ahead of those old wagons of yesteryear. The new Commodore may be just as German in its underpinnings as an Audi Avant or a big Merc, but it just feels right for our local roads. The price is right too when compared to other large ‘estates’ from Europe, all of which top $100k in local dollars. And while the option for a roaring V8 behind the lion badge is gone, the able and willing turbocharged V6 you’ll find in Holden’s tourer more than gets the job done. Most of those ancestral dad-owned Holden, Ford and


Chrysler station wagons were straight six affairs anyhow — and lacked the fuel economy, real-world power or nine-speed automatic gearbox of this modern iteration. That’s the other thing you’ll notice about the Tourer — badged with the evocative name of Calais on these shores. There are a whole lot of bells and whistles included, which those old station wagons we remember lacked. Not just seats made of a kinder material than scorching hot summer vinyl —

remember that? No, there’s also a heads-up display, ventilated seats, an invisible army of safety programs and features, and even a hands-free tailgate for loading and unloading all that camping gear. The Tourer, then, neatly answers the question ‘do I really want a new Commodore?’ by asking another one ‘Do you really need an SUV?’ If safety, space and a smooth ride are your thing — along with a certain sense of Kiwi family tradition — this is an understatedly cool ride.


For over 25 years IVECO has built an international reputation for building the toughest 4x4 trucks in the world and now we are proving ourselves on some of the toughest terrains in New Zealand. The IVECO Trakker 4x4 is a rugged off-road truck built for demanding conditions and the perfect vehicle for spreading and off road cartage. The New Daily 4x4 is a light commercial truck purpose-built to handle the muddy tracks, steep slopes and slippery roads our NZ farms have to offer. If you are looking for a 4x4 truck that works as hard as you do, why not climb into one of the best brands in the world. Phone 0800 FOR IVECO (0800 367 48326).


Your partner for sustainable transport


May 2018



Conquest of the unknown by Andy Bryenton

We live in a nation where adventure tourism is king — people from all over the planet have New Zealand on their bucket list for our dramatic scenery and wild open spaces. With few wild animals to menace the outdoors trekker and a dizzying choice of terrains, from tundra to mountains to rainforests, it’s easy to see why we’re a top pick for the adventurous. And hard to see why many Kiwis haven’t explored their own backyard. A great way to remedy this situation is the classic combo of a road trip and two wheels. Adventure motorcycling has come a long way in recent years, and the price of getting on board a machine capable of bashing through the old Paris to Dakar or beating the Baja is more reasonable than ever. At the same time, technology has beefed up the bare-bones image of the old endurance motorcycle, so that now it’s easier than ever to travel in comfort. Leave your hiking shoes behind and get on board the latest Suzuki V-Strom — the formidable 1000x ABS. For novices, there’s always the 650cc model, but the big one-litre four-stroke is truly top of the tree when it comes to adventurous riding. With beefy power delivered by that thumping big v-twin mill — set low down in the frame for better weight distribution — and a sixspeed box delivering power via some

serious rubber, the latest V-Strom lives up to its lineage with grip and torque aplenty. Both front and rear suspensions are fully adjustable, and this is where the techno-magic begins — that ABS in the name stands for one of the most advanced anti-lock and braking systems fitted to an adventure bike. Squeeze the front brake, and the rear brake comes on progressively for

a safer stop. Anti-lock technology has been taken to a new extreme, coming online not just when the bike is straight up and down, but also when it’s leaned into the corners. This inspires confidence, as does the intuitive riding position, the easy to read and understand control layout and the sheer low-down power of the V-Strom. Those who have previously not ventured off the tarmac of the open highway will take to the gravel and mud with ease, while those weaned on farm bikes and quads will find this a perfect hand in glove fit — just far more fun. There’s very little which beats being outside and part of the environment, and adventure riders know this feeling well. Introduce yourself to the latest V-Strom at your local Suzuki dealership and get the most out of New Zealand’s natural ‘adventure playground’.

Wear a helmet. A helmet is a must while riding a quad bike around the farm.

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May 2018


Retailer of Rural Piping and Farm Supplies



Mystery Creek Fielday Specials 13-16 June – New SIte F36A ALL PRICES INCLUDE GST

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Taranaki Farming Lifestyles, May 2018  

9,541 copies DELIVERED FREE to rural delivery address in Taranaki

Taranaki Farming Lifestyles, May 2018  

9,541 copies DELIVERED FREE to rural delivery address in Taranaki