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Sheep milk demand soars.

Precision tech helps farmer get it right. PAGE 31

State of the art accommodation opens at BoP kiwifruit orchard. PAGE 7




Payout lifts


SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

THE FORECAST milk payout for this season has gone up by 40c and Fonterra farmers can thank Chinese consumers. The co-operative last week announced a new range of $6.30 to $7.30/kgMS with a new midpoint of $6.80/kgMS. The revised forecast comes just a month after Fonterra announced its annual results. BNZ senior economist Doug Steel told Rural News that he’s not surprised by Fonterra’s announcement, as “underlying tones” in the dairy markets have been improving in recent weeks. In the latest Global Dairy Trade (GDT) auction, the price of flagship whole milk powder price topped US$3,000/metric tonne. The New Zea-

land dollar has also stabilised. Steel says a stable NZ dollar and strong demand for WMP normally provides upward pressure on the payout. However, he says the wide range of Fonterra’s forecast payout means “anything could still happen”. “There’s a wide range of possible outcomes, we are seeing so much

Crisis looms Growers are warning of looming “significant price rises” for fruits and vegetables thanks to the Government’s refusal to allow overseas workers into the country for harvesting and packhouse duties. Pukekohe’s Hira Bhana and Co Ltd say their business grows a lot of spring crops and needs overseas labour to supplement permanent workers like Taniela Vaioleti, (pictured) who was helping harvest lettuce on one of their farms last week. Growers fear that unharvested crops will lead to shortages and price hikes. Full story page 6.

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uncertainty lingering around...anything could still happen, but for now we are seeing better prices.” Steel says New Zealand’s close attachment to China, especially in terms of selling them dairy products, is paying dividends. “They were first in, first out of Covid and the strong demand for

WMP there gives us hope going forward.” Fonterra chief executive Miles Hurrell says the stronger 2020-21 milk price forecast is largely being driven by improved demand in China. He says at a $6.80 milk price, more than $10 billion would flow into regional New Zealand.


NEW ZEALAND’S sheep and beef farms are already close to being carbon neutral and Beef+Lamb NZ believes this strengthens calls for the formal recognition of on-farm sequestration. A study led by Dr Bradley Case at Auckland University of Technology (AUT) estimates the woody vegetation on New Zealand sheep and beef farms is offsetting between 63 and 118% of their on-farm agricultural emissions. B+LNZ chief insight officer Jeremy Baker says the study was initiated as a result of a report last year, which showed that there were about 1.4 million hectares of woody vegetation on sheep and beef farms. He says they wanted to understand how much of that was still sequestering carbon and at what level. “The problem with the ETS scheme is that it is based on planting pines and is very much for the short term and gives a quick hit for carbon sequestration,” he says. “Whereas natives take a lot longer to sequester because they are slower growing but they are there for a longer period and they are also biologically and ecologically more secure.” Report author Bradley Case says there is a strong case for farmers to get credit for the sequestration happening on their farms. – See more page 5


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Parker refuses to bend



PETER BURKE peterb@ruralnews.co.nz

NEWS��������������������������������������1-19 AGRIBUSINESS��������������� 21-22 MARKETS������������������������� 24-25 HOUND, EDNA���������������������� 26 CONTACTS����������������������������� 26 OPINION��������������������������� 26-29 MANAGEMENT�������������� 30-33 ANIMAL HEALTH������������34-37 MACHINERY AND PRODUCTS���������������������� 38-42 RURAL TRADER������������� 42-43

HEAD OFFICE Top Floor, 29 Northcroft Street, Takapuna, Auckland 0622 Phone: 09-307 0399 Fax: 09-307 0122 POSTAL ADDRESS PO Box 331100, Takapuna, Auckland 0740 Published by: Rural News Group Printed by: Inkwise NZ Ltd CONTACTS Editorial: editor@ruralnews.co.nz Advertising material: davef@ruralnews.co.nz Rural News online: www.ruralnews.co.nz Subscriptions: subsrndn@ruralnews.co.nz ABC audited circulation 79,553 as at 31.03.2019

SOUTHLAND FEDERATED Farmers vice president Bernadette Hunt says she finds it “interesting” that Environment Minister David Parker continues to downplay the feedback on the Government’s freshwater regulations. Hunt says Parker accused a local retailer in Southland, who spoke out against the regulations, of “catastrophising” the situation. But she says, in Southland, opposition to the new laws is not just coming from farmers but from the whole business community, who can see the economic disaster that is coming their ways with Parker’s new laws. “For Parker to say that any opposition is ‘catastrophising’ the situation, shows that he was not connected very well to what goes on in Southland,” Hunt told Rural News. “Retailers and businesspeople in Southland have time and time again seen what happens to the local economy when there is a dairy downturn. They know how it affects them and they take steps whenever they see one coming to protect themselves against it. “This is just not a dairy downturn. This is every aspect of farming plus a huge hit on ratepayers as well that has yet to come.” Hunt says nobody is questioning the need to improve water quality. However, she says this needs to be done over a sensible period of time so that the costs of changes don’t decimate the local economy in the process. Her comments follow farmer and community protests in Gore and Invercargill against the new freshwater laws. In Gore, 100 tractors paraded through the streets of the town to a rally at the local A&P showgrounds where farmers were joined by the local mayor and other businesspeople to hear about the implications of the laws. Hunt says local people came out with placards supporting the farmers. She says mayor Tracy Hicks told the

Hundreds of farmers, business people and others from the wider Southland community gathered in Gore and Invercargill earlier this month to express concerns about the impacts of the new freshwater regulations.

MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS BERNADETTE HUNT says after the main speakers the rally passed three resolutions that are to be passed on to government. These were: • The best solutions to Southland’s challenges will be developed in Southland • Cultivating and planting will happen when conditions are appropriate • Southland must balance a healthy economy and health freshwater Hunt says there were two prongs to the protest. The first was to raise the profile of the problem of the regulations

and to inform people about what these will mean for them. She says the other issue was a focus on mental health in the region. “We had Laura Douglas from the Fairlight Foundation speak about this issue,” Hunt says. “She spoke about her story of resilience through change and uncertainty, and gave farmers and all those there, some positive messages to take home.” Hunt says the mental health issues are not just confined to farmers, but to the whole community who are affected by pressure and uncertainty of the new regulations.

ing the convoy of tractors rather than being frustrated by it. The rally made a huge statement and there was not even a hint of any ‘redneck’ behaviour. I was proud of the way farmers conducted themselves,” Hunt says. In Invercargill the next day, the

rally that farmers were justified in their protest. Hunt says the regulations are not only a cost to farmers but to the whole community and Gore people recognise this. “It almost had the feel of Christmas parade with all those in town support-

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turnout was larger with 500 people and 150 tractors crowded into the Queens Park area to hear a variety of speakers voice their concerns about the new regulations. Hunt says there was mix of farmers and high profile local businesspeople including the local chamber of commerce taking part. Hunt says there was great camaraderie among all those at the protest. “We set up a stage on a truck and there was panel discussion, which included a banker, a farmer, a real estate agent and a retailer. They gave their views on how these freshwater regulations will impact the broader economy of Southland – so we didn’t go into any of the specifics about the rules. “It was much higher level and about the impact of the regulations on the various sectors in the community. After that, three representatives of catchment groups in Southland showcased some of the great things that farmers and community groups have already done to improve freshwater quality.”



Another shareholder revolt in the offing SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

A GROUP of Fonterra shareholders are having another go at next month’s annual meeting to force a revamp of the troubled Shareholders Council. Three resolutions have been filed by Lumsden farmer Tony Paterson: restricting the council to perform its constitutional duties, reducing the council’s annual budget by $1m, and introducing

a new 1.5c/kgMS farmer levy to fund the council. To pass, the resolutions need 50.1% support from voting shareholders. Last year, Paterson moved a resolution to start an independent review of the council, but the motion received only 44% support. Paterson told Rural News that this time he’s confident of getting over the 50.1% threshold at the annual meeting in Masterton on

“Overwhelmingly, farmer feedback is that the Shareholders Council hasn’t performed. It is ludicrous that the review steering committee’s response to this is to suggest giving the council even greater responsibility.” November 5. “I have been in talks with a number of shareholders throughout

the country and am feeling very confident.” He has also secured the backing of a group

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of Waikato farmers, who also moved a similar motion last year and garnered 26% support. The Fonterra Shareholders Council is a 25-member elected body, tasked with keeping a tab on Fonterra’s financial performance. Following heavy financial losses in 2018 and 2019, Fonterra shareholders have vented their frustration with the council for “sleeping at the wheel”. Last year, the council announced a review of its functions; an interim report was released in June and the final report due this week. The council is opposing Paterson’s resolutions. Council chairman James Barron told Rural News that the Paterson resolution was attempting to pre-empt the steering

group’s final report. Barron says the final report will consider views by all Fonterra farmers. He says the steering group has signaled possible changes to council’s roles and functions. Barron says the council also opposes a levy-based funding model that will require it to hold reserves to cover poor seasons. “The ccouncil has no ability or desire to retain farmers’ funds in this manner,” he says. But Paterson believes shareholders are “deeply disappointed” with the outcome of the review so far. “It is a lost opportunity to return our representative body to the effective, respected organisation it has been in the past.



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Lumsden farmer Tony Paterson is having another go at next month’s Fonterra annual meeting to revamp the troubled Shareholders Council.

“Overwhelmingly, farmer feedback is that the Shareholders Council hasn’t performed. “It is ludicrous that the review steering committee’s response to this is to suggest giving the council even greater responsibility.” Paterson says there has been a lot of “noise” about the council being a cornerstone shareholder and holding the board to account. But he says Fonterra’s constitution doesn’t state that. “Over time, the council has anointed itself with those titles and expanded its scope, to the detriment of its overall performance.” Paterson’s resolution proposes to slash $1m from the council’s budget: reducing number of committees and meetings and passing councilor development programmes, conferences and other shareholder engagement costs onto Fonterra’s management. Waikato farmer Trevor Simpson says his group fully supports Paterson’s resolutions. His group submitted similar motions on the council at last year’s meeting. “In hindsight we may have split the votes last year. Tony has done a better job putting together the resolutions this year and we fully back him.” Failures admitted – p 9

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New research shows that New Zealand sheep and beef farms are already offsetting the majority of their agricultural emissions.

Sheep and beef farms carbon neutral NEW RESEARCH shows that New Zealand sheep and beef farms are already offsetting the majority of their agricultural emissions. The study led by Bradley Case, a senior lecturer from Auckland University of Technology applied ecology department, estimates that the woody vegetation on the country’s sheep and beef farms offsets between 63 and 118% of their on-farm agricultural emissions. The research was funded by Beef + Lamb New Zealand and peer reviewed by chief scientist at Landcare Research, Fiona Carswell, and senior ecologist at the University of Canterbury, Adam Forbes. If the mid-point in the report’s range is used, on average the woody vegetation on NZ sheep and beef farms is absorbing


tion on sheep and beef farms does not qualify for inclusion in the ETS because it does not meet the definition of a forest. If farmers are to face a price for agricultural emissions, it’s only fair they get credit for their sequestration,” he adds. “The focus to date on livestock’s climate change contribution has been on emissions, rather than on sequestration. But with any product it makes sense to consider the whole business – in this case, taking a whole of farm approach.” McIvor also believes this research will also reassure consumers that New Zealand beef and lamb is among the most sustainable in the world. “It proves that our farmers are making a significant contribution to addressing on-farm agricultural emissions.” Case says this research not only builds an under-

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about 90% of these emissions, meaning they are close to being carbon neutral. Case said, given the outcome, there was strong case for giving farmers credit for the carbon already being stored on their farms Beef + Lamb New Zealand chief executive Sam McIvor says greenhouse gas emissions from New Zealand sheep and beef production have reduced by 30% since 1990. “This research shows that, of the remaining emissions, the vast majority are being offset by the trees on our farms and New Zealand sheep and beef farmers are well on the way to being carbon neutral by 2050.” McIvor says the study reinforces the importance of farmers getting formal recognition for the sequestration happening on their farms. “Currently, most vegeta-



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Vege crops at risk of rotting unpicked and rotting in the fields unless the Government approves urgent visas for overseas workers. The growers are

SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

FRUIT AND vegetable growers are warning their produce will be left

also telling consumers to brace for significant price increases for vegetables, strawberries, stone fruit, cherries and watermelons.

Vijay Bhana, of Pukekohe family-owned vegetable producer Hira Bhana & Co. Ltd, says the situation is pretty serious. Bhana told Rural News

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Growers are warning consumers to brace for significant price increases for vegetables.

that his company hires around 30 extra workers, mostly from the Pacific Islands, every year for harvesting and pack house duties. With no overseas workers available due to Covid border closures, the company had placed job advertisements on Trade Me and the Ministry of Social Development websites for locals. The response was very poor, he says. Without enough workers, Hira Bhana & Co. faces the risk of vegetables left unpicked and packed for customers. Bhana says this season’s lettuce crop is ready for harvesting. “We don’t use machines; the lettuce is hand cut… we can’t leave the lettuce in the ground for too long as they would over mature and rot. “This will then lead to prices of vegetables increasing because of the losses.” Bhana cannot understand why the Government isn’t allowing overseas workers in. “They are allowing rugby players and film makers. It seems very unfair.” Questions sent to caretaker Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi’s office remained unanswered as Rural

News went to the press. Fourteen major growers and distributors say in a joint statement that they are now “in crisis” and are calling for action. The growers say “time and time again” they have told the Government of their predicament around worker shortages. However, they claim nothing has changed just because more people are out of work. “There is such a shortage of people available for horticultural work that there will still be plenty of work for New Zealanders in the roles they prefer (those that offer flexibility in work hours for example). “However, without having a core experienced staff of overseas workers the crops will not get harvested outside and there will not be work for New Zealanders.” The growers say because of the Government’s “intransigence”, early harvested crops will soon be rotting in the ground and prices will skyrocket due to lack of availability. “Export markets will be lost as our direct competitors, Australia, are currently recruiting overseas workers as they normally would.” @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews


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Seasonal worker facility opened A new state of the art accommodation facility for RSE or temporary overseas workers at a large Maori kiwifruit orchard in the Bay of Plenty was recently opened by the Minister of Maori Development, Nanaia Mahuta. The opening took place during a field day at the Ngai Tukairangi Trust orchard, which is a finalist in this Ahuwhenua Trophy competition for the top Maori horticulturalist of the year. Peter Burke reports…


NANAIA MAHUTA says the new accommodation block is a great example of Maori setting the standard for hosting people who come and work on their land. The complex, which cost just over $1 million, is on Ngai Tukairangi’s 57 hectare kiwifruit orchard at Matapihi – just a few kilometres away from Tauranga city. It consists of five accommodation units plus a modern kitchen, lounge and ablution block. It is located right beside the orchard and has outside

tables and chairs for people to relax in. Ratahi Cross, chair of Ngai Tukairangi, says the complex, which took about seven months to complete, is capable of holding 40 people. However, they have restricted the numbers to 26 to give people more space. He says they didn’t want to crowd people into accommodation and the aim is to give the workers as much space as possible. “The minimum guidelines for such facilities are set by MBIE,

but we have taken this up a notch and gone well beyond the minimum standards,” he told Rural News. “We have also set up a computer in the lounge area and have provided free WIFI so the overseas workers can keep in contact with their families.” Cross says by not filling the accommodation to capacity, it gives them flexibility to meet the needs of workers – such as ensuring that relatives can share the same room.


He says it’s all about adhering to Maori values of communal living. Cross says the cooperation’s overseas workers come from Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands and Tonga. The company also employ local people – with Maori making up the majority of its workforce. Ngai Tukairangi is the largest Maori kiwifruit grower in NZ. As well as the 57 block at Matapihi in the Bay of Plenty, they also own a 60 hectare block of G3 Gold kiwifruit in Hawkes Bay.

Minister of Maori Development Nanaia Mahuta and Ngai Tukairangi Trust chair Ratahi Cross at the official opening of the facility.

HISTORIC NAME THE NEW accommodation block has been named Te Rau Mahara. Cross says this links back to the famous WWII 28th Maori Battalion and to his grand uncle or Papa Turirangi Tekani, who was a member of the battalion. During WWII, Maori raised money to buy a truck, which was sent overseas and used to carry and distribute special delicacies, such as smoked fish to Maori soldiers. Cross says his folks were big financial contributors to the purchase of that truck. “Te Rau was the name of the truck and Mahara means to remember,” he told Rural News. “We decided on this name because it recognises the efforts of the people from overseas we house in the complex who, in turn, produce the wonderful kiwifruit that we supply to the rest of the world.”

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Burning hope for change NIGEL MALTHUS

FEDERATED FARMERS is hoping for changes to Department of Conservation (DoC) high country grazing rules, in the aftermath of two recent big wildfires in the Mackenzie Basin. A fire at Pukaki Downs, in August, burned through 300ha of DoC land. Meanwhile, the big Lake Ohau fire this month took out many homes in the Lake Ohau village and tore through another 5000ha – both farmland and DoC estate. Federated Farmers blames the ferocity of both blazes on the vegetation load of ungrazed DoC land, saying fire risk is being mismanaged and neglected, and needs urgent review. “It’s not even fire season and we have lost almost 50 homes and over 5000ha because of fire,” Federated Farmers high country chair Rob Stokes told Rural News. He says some areas of the DoC estate were inappropriate for livestock, but in less sensitive areas, low numbers of sheep or cattle can keep combustible grass, scrub and immature wilding pine levels down. Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage responded to this call suggesting farmers were opportunistically looking for free grazing. Stokes dismissed this as “a cheap shot.” He says the Feds had been warning about fuel loads on DoC land for years. “We have only been opportunistic in the sense that the near-miss to human lives, not to mention the stock loss and serious property damage from the Ohau fire, was a chance to finally get some traction with the department and the Government on this issue.” Despite the uncertainty around the general election, Stokes expects

Helicopters with monsoon buckets attack the big Lake Ohau fire. NED DAWSON/FENZ

to continue discussions. “We hope it’s sorted out this spring.” DoC director operations, Ben Reddiex, told Rural News that the department and Land Information New Zealand held a positive meeting with Federated Farmers to discuss fire management in the high country. “Reducing the occurrences of fires around high-value sites, residential and commercial structures is a key concern for all parties,” he says. “A range of potential solutions were explored, including active management of physical hazards, and an ongoing public awareness campaign about fire risk across New Zealand.” Reddiex claims DoC, LINZ and Federated Farmers are working collaboratively with Fire and Emergency New Zealand on these matters.

Stokes believes destocking highcountry farms for conservation purposes had not been thoroughly thought through. He says passive grazing, in the past, had significantly reduced fire risk and also enabled landowners and leaseholders to manage pests while preserving open landscapes. The immediate past chairman of the Feds’ High Country group, Simon Williamson, told Rural News the Lake Ohau fire had obviously been “pretty hot” where it went through ungrazed DoC land. “You only have to go up there and have a look to see that the bits that were grazed haven’t been nearly as badly affected as those that haven’t. “We’ve never said that grazing will stop fires, but it’ll help a helluva lot with the issues that go on when there is a fire.

“Anywhere it’s been closed up with all that fuel loading underneath it, it’s burnt really hot and savagely whereas if you graze underneath it and take that fuel out of it, they [fires] do brush through and everything is more likely to survive underneath it.” Williamson’s own property, Glenbrook, is about 20km from the fire but was potentially threatened when it got into the neighbouring Ohau Downs property at the bottom of the lake, he said. “It had jumped the road there and it was coming this way but because it’s all been grazed it didn’t get anywhere.” Mackenzie District Mayor Graham Smith, who farms in South Canterbury outside the Mackenzie Basin, said his son’s Ben Dhu Station was under threat from the fire until a wind change.

Smith acknowledged that DoC had done a lot of good work and recently put a lot of money into managing wildings. But believes grazing could help manage the risk. “I’m not talking about decimating it to dust,” he told Rural News. “I am talking about managing it, light grazing throughout the year or certain times the year so that that foliage is managed.” Smith also floated the idea of controlled burns to manage wildings, having seen how the Pukaki fire appeared to have knocked wildings back. “In these areas only a small bit of fire went over it but all the wildings are dead. So maybe burning some of these areas from time to time needs to play a part in the management of wildings.” Smith has had discussions with Sage and she agreed that the five aligned parties charged with joint management of the Mackenzie Basin, (ECan, LINZ, DoC, Waitaki District and Mackenzie District) would sit down and work out a fire management strategy. “I do declare my interest as a farmer but I think really in the Mackenzie Country we have to take our hats off to those farmers and landholders up there because they in general have done a really good job in actually managing that ground,” Smith says. “Conservation’s one thing and we all understand protecting the environment and we want to protect it in the Mackenzie because we’ve got some outstanding natural landscapes.” Smith says you can’t shut vast areas of country up and then “just walk away”. • Getting back to normal - p10

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Council admits its failures SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

THE FONTERRA Shareholders Council admits that it’s failing to achieve the trust and respect of its farmers. It has told a steering group about challenges and constraints it faces, including being prevented from sharing and discussing information with shareholders due to market disclosure rules. A copy of the council

ters of importance to a cornerstone shareholder in a co-op context.” The council performance committee, which monitors the co-op’s performance, also operates under great restraint. Information provided by board and management cannot be shared with the rest of council, let alone with shareholders. The council says there’s also a reluctance to provide the commit-

terra’s shareholding base is widely dispersed with no substantial shareholders. “This means that, without a representative

In its submission to the steering group, the council points out that its “watchdog and cornerstone shareholder” mantles do not reflect the reality. submission was obtained by Rural News. The steering group, chaired by retired senior public official James Buwalda, is reviewing the council’s functions. A final report is expected this month. In its submission to the steering group, the council points out that its “watchdog and cornerstone shareholder” mantles do not reflect the reality. The council says that as Fonterra’s cornerstone shareholder, its view should be heard when the board and management are considering matters which affect farmers’ supply or ownership interests. “This has happened to varying degrees over time. What is meant by ‘cornerstone shareholder’ needs to be more clearly defined and have a more prescribed framework,” it says. The council isn’t consulted and has no role in the development or approval of, Fonterra’s strategy, business plans and use of shareholder capital. The council says it learns of these decisions when shareholders do. “If council is required to be a cornerstone shareholder it must be empowered to be one, but should only focus on mat-

tee with information considered sensitive under market disclosure rules. “These factors frustrate the reporting function, do not enable the committee to empower other councillors with knowledge to assist their discussions in the farmer base, contribute to unrealistic expectations about council’s ability to call out poor performance early or influence investment decisions, and tie council into shareholder perceptions of complicity with the board.” Some Fonterra shareholders claim the council is a lap dog to the board. The council says there are differences of opinion with the board but they are resolved behind closed doors. It told the steering group that there has historically been a desire to keep differences of opinion between board and council in-house …“that is, behind closed doors, resolved constructively and out of the media”. “This has given rise to a shareholder impression that council is unduly compliant and does not as a matter of course express an alternative view.” The council maintains that it has a role to play. Some shareholders want the council scrapped. The council notes Fon-

body, the collective power of shareholders would be difficult to organise in a way that adequately protects their interests.”

Shareholders Council chair James Barron has admitted in its submission to the review steering group that the council is failing to achieve the trust and respect of its farmers.










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Quota split a major worry SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

NEW ZEALAND meat exporters want the EU and UK to get serious on reaching a deal on postBrexit quotas. The Meat Industry Association (MIA) accuses Brussels and London of forcing the split of existing quotas without New Zealand’s agreement. New Zealand has a sheepmeat quota of 228,389 metric tonnes and beef quota of 1,300MT at a 20% intariff quota rate for EU countries, including the UK. However, the EU and the UK are proposing to split the sheepmeat quota 50:50 between the two markets post-Brexit. The beef quota is to be split 65:35 with the EU getting the bigger quota. Meat Industry Association chief executive Sirma Karapeeva told Rural News that the proposal to split the quotas has been developed by the EU and UK independently without any consultation with others (including NZ). “So, in effect, they are forcing through a unilateral decision…we do not accept this proposal at all.” The UK is no longer a member of the European Union (EU) and rules

Meat Industry Association chief executive Sirma Karapeeva says discussions with the EU and UK has been frustratingly slow.

for the new UK-EU relationship, including trade, starts on January 1. 2021. The NZ Government hopes to have an agreement in place with both London and Brussels by then and discussions are ongoing. Karapeeva notes that progress in discussions with the EU and UK has been frustratingly slow. “We are concerned that the EU and UK is not engaging seriously to find a solution here,” she says. “It is difficult to work up alternative or creative options to the split

when the EU and UK are slow to come to the table to negotiate and show no willingness to engage constructively. “As an industry, we want to be absolutely clear. We are certainly not after windfall gains, but this approach would leave us worse off. That is not what we expect from the UK or the EU, and flies in the face of assurances that they have given us previously.” Karapeeva says it’s an issue with real-world commercial impacts. “We are urging the UK and EU to sit down with

New Zealand and work seriously together to find a solution, bring fresh ideas and a constructive mindset to the table. “From our side, there are genuine commercial impacts. From their side, we would have thought that the impact on consumers should be a key consideration.” The splits will seriously affect NZ’s ability to export to the UK and EU in several different ways. Firstly, they remove the flexibility that is inherent in the existing tariff-rate quotas (TRQs)

to enable NZ to respond to market conditions in the UK and EU27. For sheepmeat, for example, there may well be disruption and price impacts in the market, especially if the UK has not finalised its negotiations with the EU for access for its sheepmeat, says Karapeeva. “But the proposed split quota for NZ product will limit our ability to respond to those market conditions by matching up our supply with actual demand in the markets, as is our current practice as responsible exporters. “The fact that the sheepmeat quota has been underfilled to a greater or lesser extent over recent years just goes to illustrate that we are focused on responding to what our customers and the markets want – whether it comes to volumes or product attributes, such as quality, food safety, sustainable production practices or good animal welfare systems.” In the case of highquality beef, the reduced quantities into each market threaten the viability of the trade. Karapeeva points out that if customers want more than 454MT, NZ exporters simply will not be able to supply them.

A helicopter with a monsoon bucket attacks the big Lake Ohau fire. NED DAWSON/FENZ

GETTING BACK TO NORMAL THE FARMER most affected by the Lake Ohau fire, Grant Murray, confirmed that he lost 170 ewes. Lambing has since started and while some ewes aborted in the first week after the fire, most lambs were now being born alive. He told Rural News the clean-up had barely begun, but having lost a lot of fence and gate posts they were concentrating on getting the property stock proof. Murray and his wife Rachael run Ribbonwood Station and lease the adjacent Shelton Downs, running the combined 7500ha as one. The 2500ha Shelton Downs was worst affected, the fire burning through about 1800ha. “At the moment we’re just running around patching things up as best we can until we work out the best plan forward. We still have some stock proof paddocks but we definitely don’t have as many as we used to.” The fire burned a distance of nearly 12km from the Lake Ohau lakefront to within about a kilometre of the Murray homestead. “It was coming straight for home and we were just lucky with the way the wind shifted and all the helicopters and stuff managed to get on top of it before it got there,” Murray says. “There was a lot of luck involved.” Murray was reluctant to blame the fire on DoC’s management of its land. “There’s always going to be a risk of fire. And it is just how we manage it. Grazing will have an effect but fire will still go through grazed native pasture.” – Nigel Malthus

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NZ meat exports at risk DAVID ANDERSON

NEARLY HALF our country’s meat exports are at risk unless there is urgent action by government to allow migrant workers to stay in New Zealand. That’s the warning from NZ’s meat processing sector organisation the Meat Industry Association (MIA). It claims meat processing and exporting jobs are in jeopardy unless specialist migrants are allowed to remain in the country.

rupted and employees might be let go.” She says under the Government’s one-year stand down policy, which applies to low skilled workers, 80 halal processing people and at least 260 other essential meat workers currently working in New Zealand will be forced to leave. “Halal production is a key aspect of the industry’s approach to meeting consumer requirements globally. These skilled people are absolutely critical to sustain the entire

Meat processing is NZ’s largest manufacturing industry and more than 45% of our total red meat exports are halal certified. “New Zealand’s meat processing and exporting sector faces being forced to limit production and let people go unless the Government recognises the essential role of its skilled migrant workforce,” MIA chief executive Sirma Karapeeva says. She warns that the loss of halal processing people – alongside hundreds of other essential meat workers – could result in reduced production and job losses in the sector. Meat processing is NZ’s largest manufacturing industry and more than 45% of our total red meat exports are halal certified. However, under the current rules, around a third of the country’s 250 essential halal processing workers will have to leave New Zealand next year due to the Government’s one-year standdown policy. “Most of the 42 halal processing plants in New Zealand now operate between 10-12 months per year,” Karapeeva explains. “A shortage of skilled halal processing people could result in production at many plants being limited to six months in the year, which would mean processing of livestock for farmers is severely dis-

industry of 25,000 workers.” Karapeeva says while the industry’s preference is always to employ New Zealanders from local communities, that is not easy in the case of halal slaughtermen – despite more locals looking for jobs in the post Covid environment. “Export demand for halal products means we have a high need for certified practising Muslim processing people and these are highly specialised roles,” Karapeeva explains. “While we recruit as many as we can domestically, it significantly falls short of our need. That means we have no option but to look to migrants to fill some 150 roles each year.” The industry is urging the Government to extend the time that skilled migrant workers are permitted to remain and work in New Zealand. Its request for an exemption to roll over the current AIP for 12 months to keep current halal slaughterers in New Zealand has also been refused. “The current immigration policy settings would have significant adverse consequences for our industry,” Karapeeva adds. “It means we would

not be able to operate at optimum capacity or deliver the full economic and social benefits to the country during the recovery.”

The meat processing and exporting sector collectively generate $12 billion in income per year for the country. It is also responsible for $4.6 bil-

The meat industry is warning that processing and exporting jobs are in jeopardy unless specialist migrants are allowed to remain in the country.

lion in household income and represents approximately a fifth of New Zealand’s productive sector.

“We have tried to engage constructively with officials,” Karapeeva adds.

“However, progress has been slow and the industry is running out of time.”





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Understanding of lower payout PETER BURKE peterb@ruralnews.co.nz

MIRAKA, THE Maori owned dairy company near Taupo, believes its farmer suppliers are relatively happy about a pos-

sible lower payout this season. Chief executive Richard Wyeth says Miraka’s payout range for this season is $5.75 to $6.75, with the midpoint at $6.25, which he acknowl-

edges is down on last season. Wyeth says this price reflects the disruption, nervousness and uncertainty created by Covid19 and what the next 12 months might look like.

“The dollar has come off and then strengthened quite quickly, then come off again. That uncertainty as to where the dollar is going to land and where prices are going to sit has made for a slightly

Miraka chief executive Richard Wyeth acknowledges that this year’s forecast payout range of $5.75 to $6.75 is down on last season.

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more pessimistic view than last year,” he told Rural News. “But overall, the signals we are seeing at the moment are positive.” Wyeth says Miraka’s frozen milk concentrate, which the company launched this year, is a positive sign and a major focus of its refreshed growth strategy. The product is designed for the Asian market. “The frozen milk concentrate is made by taking the concentrates out of the evaporator and freezing it and shipping into the market, where they defrost it and gets used as a milk product,” he explains. “The product is packed in a 20 litre bag and box.” With solid demand for its UHT products, business for Miraka has been good. Wyeth says its milk powder business is solid and there is steady demand for this. He says there is a certain irony in that the outlook is really positive due to the fact that China, where 100% of Miraka’s UHT goes, is one of the only countries in growth. “We have seen the

demand really go through the roof since they have got through Covid and our two key customers have actually asked us for more UHT,” Wyeth adds. “We are currently running at capacity, so we are stretching the plant at the moment. There was certainly a short term blip last season but for this current season the demand is very strong for UHT.” Wyeth says a positive for Miraka during Covid was that the Chinese authorities encouraged their people to drink more milk. He believes it’s interesting that when Covid first hit people were saying ‘don’t focus on China’. “Three months later, the same people are saying ‘aren’t we lucky we have China’.” Wyeth says Miraka has always been prudent and canvassed several markets from a risk management perspective. He says long term, the company is working with its partners in a bid to get more certainty from those partnerships to help de-risk their business.

DOWN ON THE FARM RICHARD WYETH says, down on the farm, things are also looking good with the milk flows up 4% on last year. He says Miraka’s farmers are now starting to see the benefits of the Te Ara Miraka scheme, which incentivises them to focus on good environmental production systems. Farmers who meet all the strict criteria of Te Ara Miraka can earn up to an extra 20 cents per kilogram on their milk for the season, while others who meet some of the criteria also get bonus payments. “As a result of this scheme, our farmers are in a good position to deal with the new regulations,” Wyeth told Rural News. “A lot of them have already got farm environment plans in place and they have got GRIS maps of all their land – so they are long way down the path already to be compliant which is pretty fantastic.” Wyeth says the company’s farmers can now see the real benefits of Te Ara Miraka and how well it has positioned them for the future.

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Lamb price down, but not weak DAVID ANDERSON

WHILE LAMB prices are starting the new season at around 16% below last year’s levels, they are not outright weak, according

to the BNZ. In its latest Rural Wrap newsletter, BNZ senior economist Doug Steel says the current price of $7/kg is sitting close to the 5-year aver-

age for this time of year. “We’d argue this is a very credible performance, given the circumstances,” Steel says. “This expected lower average for the new season –

compared to the season just finished – largely reflects a lower starting point rather than necessarily further weakness from here.” He says while there

BNZ’s 2020/21 season average lamb price forecast of $6.60/kg sits close to the past five-year average.

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further supported by a gradually appreciating yuan,” Steel explains. “African Swine Fever (ASF) remains an important consideration for lamb demand. Ongoing disruption to pork supplies is supporting demand for alternative meats, including lamb.” Steel says, overall, the outlook for lamb demand has a fair spread of positives and negatives in the mix. “That alone is reason enough to be cautious,” he says. “But even if demand softens a bit that does not necessarily mean prices will fall further, with the supply side generally looking price supportive for the season ahead.” The BNZ is also anticipating that tighter NZ supply will provide some support to prices over the season. “We await the industry’s first estimate for the new season’s national lamb crop, usually available in November, with interest.” Steel says the BNZ’s 2020/21 season average lamb price forecast of $6.60/kg sits close to the past five-year average. “Given the serious challenges that the world currently faces, this would be a respectable outcome.”

are many factors to consider, BNZ remains generally cautious about demand. However, Steel believes the supply side of the equation has the potential to offer some price support. BNZ says Covid-19 continues to dominate things, with European case numbers tracking higher. “This is cause for concern, as some new restrictions are imposed. “While many restaurants are open, the uncertainty alone has been unhelpful for forward orders – including for the lucrative Christmas chilled trade.” Meanwhile, the bank adds that the ongoing the UK-EU trade negotiations are also adding to insecurity. “Uncertainty remains as the end of year Brexit deadline looms,” it says. “The base case is that some sort of deal will be cobbled together before the end of this year but, as with all things Brexit, there are no guarantees. The coming weeks will be crucial.” However, BNZ says more encouraging signs of recovery are coming out of China. “This provides a better backdrop for lamb demand ahead, with Chinese purchasing power

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The little dairy co-op that can Waikato milk processor Tatua posted record revenues of $381 million last financial year. Chair Stephen Allen and chief executive Brendhan Greaney sat down with Sudesh Kissun to discuss the effort behind the results. BEING SMALL and nimble has always been the strength of small Waikato processor Tatua. For almost a decade the cooperative has been the top performing milk processor in the country. When Covid-19 reached NZ shores in early March, Tatua was ready. Chief executive Brendhan Greaney recalls that within 24 hours about 100 workers were set up by their IT team to work from home. “Those who had roles requiring they remain on site worked in discrete groups and operated within social distancing rules,” he says. With many people away from the office, there was space to set up several cafeterias to keeps groups apart. Milk was continuing to come into the plant for processing and customers around the world still required products. “We were fortunate to be able to keep going, as well as to avoid any Covid-19 cases,” Gre-

aney says. Communication was a key factor with farmer shareholders and staff receiving regular updates. One of the first messages to staff was that no one was going to lose their job. Greaney says everyone played their part and there was massive commitment to looking after each other and the business. Chairman Stephen Allen attributes the record financial results to its hardworking staff, both here and abroad. “In the context of the pandemic, it was a huge effort to keep the business running, and on top of that, our people galvanised together and produced a stunning result,” Allen says. Greaney commented that, “we have a team of people at Tatua, including those in our offshore subsidiaries, who have shown exceptional commitment in taking care of each other and the business through one of the most challenging and uncer-

Tatua results ●● ●● ●● ●●


Record Group revenue of $381 million Earnings of $151 million Processed 15.15 million kgMS Group earnings of $151 million equates to $9.96/kgMS Final cash payout of $8.70/kgMS - $1.26/ kgMS or $19.1m before tax retained for investment.

Tatua Co-operative chair Stephen Allen and chief executive Brendhan Greaney.

ANIMALS v PLANTS TATUA CHAIRMAN Stephen Allen says the co-op is closely watching the animal protein versus plant protein debate. However, he says Tatua is concentrating on dairy and has no immediate plans to tap into plant-based protein. He says Tatua will be using the next 12-18 months to “bed down” major projects like its new wastewater plant and a new engineering workshop. He says planning and research is underway for the next phase of growth.

tain times we can recall. Our result is a credit to them.”

Allen says the camaraderie among staff has been great, noting that

during the Covid lockdowns, the management team and sales & marketing staff helped load containers. Allen believes the coop’s strong performance over the years strengthened the business’ resilience. Tatua did not apply for the Government’s Covid-19 wage subsidy. “We have built a very strong balance sheet and we have invested in infrastructure and systems over the past few years”. Tatua has 107 farmer

suppliers, running familyowned farms with a long history of association with the co-operative. Every year after the September board meeting, Allen and his board members contact each farmer supplier to personally relay the annual results. This year, the response was overwhelming. Allen says he’s pleased with the way farmer shareholders conducted themselves during the lockdowns.

He says Tatua farmer suppliers were proud to be part of essential services and continued to operate their farms within restrictions. “The feedback we got from our farmers is that they feel that they have really contributed something to New Zealand. To be told that you are really making a difference to your country is very inspiring and motivating,” he says. “In recent years, many farmers have felt they have been put on the spot and it’s hurting a lot of them.” Allen says the primary industry sector should be commended for its contribution to the national economy during Covid. “It’s remarkable what the primary sector has done for NZ, not just dairy farmers, but orchardists, sheep and beef farmers and the fisheries sector.” @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews

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Farmers happy to see the back of loss-making China Farms investment “We don’t shy away from the fact that establishing farms from scratch in China has been challenging, but our team has successfully developed productive model farms, supplying high quality fresh milk to the local consumer market.”

SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

FONTERRA FARMERS are happy to see the back of the co-operative’s lossmaking China Farms. The co-operative is offloading three farming hubs to Chinese companies for $555 million. Over the past 10 years it has invested over $1 billion in the farms with very little return. The sale of China Farms was part of a review announced 18 months ago, where it halted overseas expansion and moved away from overseas milk pools in favour of growing its New Zealand milk base. Fonterra farmers were unhappy with the co-op’s investments like China Farms, which ran at a loss. Fonterra’s 2020 annual report reported that China Farms’ gross profit was $11 million compared to a $14 million loss the previous year. Federated Farmers dairy section chair Wayne Langford told Rural News that overall the response from farmers has been positive towards the sale of the farms. He noted that the farms have “been a constant burden on the balance sheet and a talking

Fonterra chief executive Miles Hurrell concedes that the co-op’s disastrous investment in its China Farms deal has cost it more than $1 billion over the past decade.

point at most shareholder meetings I have attended in the last 10 years”. “While the farms have struggled to make money and pay themselves off, I think most farmers are aware of that the role they played for the co-op was not just for financial

returns. “The farms opened up many new doors and trading opportunities that need to be factored into the assessment of performance over time.” He says Fonterra is an evolving cooperative and it’s great to see strong

decisions being made. “They will make good investments and poor ones, just as our farmer shareholders do. So it’s great to see that these are being analysed and evaluated with a clear focus towards future direction.” Fonterra chief execu-

tive Miles Hurrell says, in building the farms, Fonterra has demonstrated its commitment to the development of the Chinese dairy industry. “We’ve worked closely with local players, sharing our expertise in farming techniques and animal

husbandry, and contributed to the growth of the industry. “We don’t shy away from the fact that establishing farms from scratch in China has been challenging, but our team has successfully developed productive model farms, supplying high quality fresh milk to the local consumer market. It’s now time to pass the baton to Youran and Sanyuan to continue the development of these farms.” Hurrell says the sale of the farms will allow the co-op to prioritise the areas of its business where it has competitive advantages. “For the last 18 months, we have been reviewing every part of the business to ensure our assets and investments meet the needs of the co-op today. Selling the farms is in line with our decision to focus on

our New Zealand farmers’ milk. “China remains one of Fonterra’s most important strategic markets, receiving around a quarter of our production. Selling the farms will allow us to focus even more on strengthening our Foodservice, Consumer Brands and Ingredients businesses in China. “We will do this by bringing the goodness of New Zealand milk to Chinese customers in innovative ways and continuing to partner with local Chinese companies to do so. Our investment in R&D and application centres in China will support this direction,” says Hurrell. Completion of the sale, which is subject to anti-trust clearance and other regulatory approvals in China, is expected to occur within this financial year.

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In truth, turning plastic waste into fence posts is nothing short of ingenious. It’s a clever idea that Jerome Wenzlick has turned into a thriving business through dogged perseverance. Not only do the plastic posts he now produces outperform their wooden counterparts, they’re helping to solve a big environmental problem. Each post uses around 400 plastic bottles and 1,500 plastic bags that would otherwise end up in a landfill. It’s a really good example of the progressive nature of New Zealand’s farmers. As more and more rural businesses take on challenges like this, FMG is right alongside them to help manage the risks and move forward. When you do things differently, it’s great to know someone like FMG has got your back. To hear the full story of FuturePost’s journey, go to fmg.co.nz/futurepost

We’re here for the good of the country. FMG1032RNFP_F



Meat quota rates remain vital land exported 9,940 tonnes of beef to the US during August 2020, the highest volume for the month since 2016. This represented an 85% increase on the same period in 2019. This was worth $80 million, the highest August value for beef exports to the US since 2015. This increased demand from the US offset a reduction in beef exports to China. “Overall, beef exports were largely unchanged compared to last August,” Karapeeva says. “Volumes


A JUMP in the value and volume of New Zealand’s sheepmeat exports to Europe and the UK shows why preserving WTO tariff rate quotas is so important, claims the Meat Industry Association (MIA). Its analysis shows that NZ’s sheepmeat exports rose 12% by volume and 5% by value in August – compared to a year ago, Chief executive Sirma Karapeeva says the growth in sheepmeat exports to the UK and Europe highlights why the European Union (EU) and UK must not be allowed to split New Zealand’s World Trade Organisation (WTO) country-specific tariff rate quotas following Brexit. “Trade patterns are continuously changing. The red meat sector’s ability to maintain steady overall export volumes and value during these difficult times underlines the importance of flexibility and responding to constantly evolving market dynamics,” she explains. “It also illustrates the difficulty of predicting future trends based on historical trade data. We remain deeply con-

NZ’s sheepmeat exports rose 12% by volume and 5% by value in August.

cerned about the proposal for the EU and UK to split the WTO tariff rate quotas, which would reduce that flexibility and disadvantage New Zealand.” Karapeeva adds that a fall in sheepmeat exports

to China (-13% by value) was offset by the significant increase in demand from the UK and Europe – despite the uncertainty of the fast-approaching Brexit. MIA figures show that a total of 2,044 tonnes of

sheepmeat was exported to the UK in August 2020, a 43% increase on August 2019. Exports to the Netherlands rose by 80% and to Germany by 30%. France and Belgium also saw increases. Meanwhile, New Zea-

increased by 1% and value reduced by 3%.” She adds that this result is very positive given the challenging global environment. “Beef exports to China still remain higher than most previous August months. The drop reflects the exceptionally high Chinese demand for protein this time last year – due to African Swine Fever. “Brazil has also increased its beef exports to China as it benefits from the drop in value of the Brazilian real against

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THREE INTO TWO! FARMLANDS SHAREHOLDERS in the North Island have three candidates vying for two seats at this year’s director election. No election is required in the South Island, as chairman Rob Hewett, who retired by rotation, was re-elected unopposed.

Only North Island shareholders are eligible to vote in this year’s election. Voting opened October 15 and runs until November 11 and can be completed either online or via post. Current director Warren Parker is seeking re-election and is joined

on the ballot by fellow shareholder candidates Peter Ellis and Fenton Wilson. Both Parker and Nikki DaviesColley retired by rotation this year, with Parker seeking re-election and Davies-Colley deciding to stand down.

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the US dollar.” NZ beef volumes exported to Canada, Taiwan, Korea, Australia and Saudi Arabia also lifted year-on-year. This included a 209% increase to Canada, with 1,993 tonnes and 73% increase to Taiwan at 1,507 tonnes. The value of all of NZ’s red meat and coproducts exported during August held steady compared to the same period last year – at $516.7 million. China still remains our largest red meat market – with total exports of $151.7 million.



Sheep milk demand soars SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

SHEEP MILK company Maui Milk is looking for new farmer suppliers as demand soars. The company has taken on four new independent suppliers in Waikato this season to complement milk from its own farms. Maui Milk general manager operations Peter Gatley says the company needs a lot more milk to satisfy demand from sheep infant formula customers. One of the new conversions is a greenfield site development on a sheep farm; others involve fitting out existing herringbone sheds on dairy farms. Gatley says the dairy farm conversion model, located within an hour’s drive of the powder plant at Innovation Park, is expected to be the backbone of industry growth. He points out that there are 3800 dairy farms in the Waikato, with most able to incorporate sheep milking. “Even the smaller ones have sufficient scale for sheep milking. They have a lot of milking infrastructure suitable for dairy and sheep – topography, fertility, small paddocks, races, water and effluent system,” he told Rural News. “You can milk your cows in autumn and have the ewes underway in spring.” Gatley said there are

many reasons for farmers to consider the change. Payout is based on total milk solids and equates to about $3/litre. “At 15 to 20 ewes per ha, and 200 to 300 litres per ewe, even the lower end of the scale exceeds milk income from cow dairy,” he claims. “Farmers like the stability of pricing on rolling threeyear contracts.” Not surprisingly, environmental challenges feature strongly in thinking. Overseer calculations generally show sheep milking to have a considerably lighter footprint than cow dairy. Gatley says some farmers see parallels with goat milking in terms of both financial and environmental issues, but sheep milking enables them to capitalise on their experience in pastoral farming, without the need to tie up capital in barns and machinery. Shares are not required either, but supply rights will be assigned to protect the interests of early adopters. Gatley says succession planning is a big factor in some of the conversions, with the new generation happy to innovate and drive rapid productivity improvement while supplying an ultra-premium product category. He says interest is also being expressed by those seeking a foot in the door via equity partnerships or sharemilking agreements. Tom Woutersen, Maui

CEO Leah Davey and Business Manager Tom Woutersen pleased to see milk flowing on a new Waikato conversion.

Milk manager responsible for new supply, says there are some very capable young farmers looking to sheep dairy as a possible route to farm ownership.

“We also know there are a lot of farm owners nearing retirement age. Some want to retain an interest in the farm but recognise it’s time for

someone else to take over the day to day management. “We’re happy to match those with the makings of a good team”.

New Maui chief executive Leah Davey joined the company from a multi-national ingredients supplier to the infant formula industry. She recalls

she immediately saw the opportunity. “The international market is huge and growing, but all of the big players are looking for a point of difference,” she says. “A2 and the goat product have shown the way but now we have something that ticks every box for the demanding highend consumer. In its natural form sheep milk contains about 50% more nutrient than cow or goat milk. “Like goat milk it is easy to digest, but it has better flavour, and it’s free-range and pasture fed. “All lambs are reared, and many are reared on their mothers. Consumers love this concept and it has a lot of appeal to farmers too.”

RURAL NEWS KEEPS IT KIWI! READERS MAY have noticed the pages of Rural News have been whiter and brighter of late – the product of higher grade paper and sharper printing quality. Rural News Group has teamed up with another 100% Kiwiowned business, Inkwise, shifting our publications Rural News, Dairy News, Hort News and NZ Winegrower to their presses in Rolleston. In a Covid world, the call to “keep it Kiwi”, where possible, is stronger than ever. Our move to Inkwise achieves this. It also has the added benefit of giving readers

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Concerns mount over USChina trade spat SUDESH KISSUN sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz

NEW ZEALAND trade officials are watching the escalating trade war between the US and China with mounting concern and anxiety. Deputy Secretary Trade and Economic at MFAT Vangelis Vitalis says the deepening trade war is creating “a general sense of uncertainty”. “We have two major global economies not getting on, that’s always bad news for small and medium sized economies that look for larger ones to lead the way or at least not stand in the way of progress in developing the international rules

based system,” he says. Vitalis made this comment during a global trade update webinar organised by Beef+Lamb NZ two weeks ago. He says the trade war is creating more uncertainty and more risks out there for businesses. There are some direct risks to NZ. He notes that the free trade agreement with China has been part of NZ’s growth story and helped us weather the global financial crisis. He says key for NZ going forward will be how the phase one deal between the US and China is implemented. “Are they going to buy more beef or sheepmeat from the US and what it

Vangelis Vitalis says the deepening trade war is creating “a general sense of uncertainty”.

means for displacing our own products? “What preferential access they have into each other’s markets... those are the risks out

there.” Vitalis urged exporters to report any pattern of behaviour that caused market issues to MFAT. “That’s the key focus


for us over the next 12 to 18 months, to help exporters overcome barriers.” Three years ago, US President Donald Trump

launched the trade war to pressure Beijing to implement significant changes to aspects of its economic system that he claimed facilitated unfair

Chinese trade practices, including forced technology transfer, limited market access, intellectual property theft, and subsidies to state-owned enterprises. Trump argued that unilateral tariffs would shrink the US trade deficit with China and cause companies to bring manufacturing jobs back to the US. Between July 2018 and August 2019, the US announced plans to impose tariffs on more than US$550 billion of Chinese products, and China retaliated with tariffs on more than US$185 billion of US goods. @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews



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farmers to connect Content supplied by Rabobank - Growing New Zealand Together with worldwide , a Better

World economies on the improve ECONOMIC ACTIVITY continues to improve month-on-month, though outside of China it remains well short of preCovid levels. There is mounting evidence of how important government support schemes have been to consumers. The OECD estimates that in May, 50 million jobs across the OECD were supported by job retention schemes: 10 times as many as through the global financial crisis. NZ’s food and beverage remains a good place to be through this crisis. Infection rates and economic activity are doing better in its key markets than elsewhere. It has kept its supply chains open while some countries have stumbled. And it primarily sells staple items to consumers who have been well-supported

by governments. But there are still downside risks on the road ahead.


THE THIRD month of the new season has seen another leap in milk flows – but the latest spring blast could dampen record growth

Global Dairy Prices

expectations for October production. New Zealand milk production for the 2020/21 season boosted 4.7% higher than the previous August on a milksolids basis. Total milk flows are ahead of last season by 4.5% on a milksol-

ids basis. At this stage, Rabobank is anticipating milk volumes to grow up to 2% YOY for the full 2020/21 season. Milk production growth across the major export engines began in Q2 2020 and is forecast to continue expanding into 2021: a feat not matched since 2018. With the forecast milk production growth over the next 12 months, and consumption that will take time to recover, Rabobank expects the global market fundamentals to remain weak into Q2 2021.


RABORESEARCH EXPECTS farmgate prices to hold at current levels, while seasonal supplies remain tight, but will potentially start to come under downward pressure from the end of

Watching over your brassica crop so you don’t have to


North Island Bull Price

October as supplies start lifting. South Island farmgate prices continued to strengthen through September on the back of limited supplies. The greater balance between processor demand and cattle supplies in the North Island saw prices there remain largely steady over the last month.

As at the end of September, the North Island bull price was NZ$5.60/ kg cwt, up 1% MOM, with the South Island bull price sitting at NZ$5.15/kg cwt, up 3% MOM. Average export returns held firm for the month of August, at NZ$ 8.04/kg (up 1% MOM). However, returns are now starting to fall behind the levels

achieved last year when strong demand from China as a result of African Swine Fever drove export prices to record levels over the second half of 2019. Solid US demand for manufacturing beef, combined with softening Chinese export prices, continues to see NZ exporters direct an increasing proportion of

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Content supplied by Rabobank - Growing a Better New Zealand Together beef into the US market. Export volumes to US for the month of August were up 96% YOY, while export volumes to China for August were down 30% YOY.


RABORESEARCH EXPECTS procurement pressure to continue underpinning farmgate prices into October. However, prices will follow traditional sea-

sonal patterns once new season lamb supplies increase, with prices likely to start softening towards the end of the month. There was minimal price movement through September, although procurement competition in some parts of the country did see small farmgate price lifts in certain regions. As of the end of September, the price in

South Island Lamb Price

the North Island averaged NZ$7.20/kg cwt (-1% MOM), while South Island lamb averaged NZ$7.10/kg cwt (+1% MOM). Farmgate prices in both islands start the 2020/21 season down 16% on last season’s opening prices as uncharacteristically flat pricing through the winter months has seen farmgate prices falling well-below the levels experienced last year. There were some encouraging signs for export returns in August, with average lamb export values for the month increasing MOM (+8%) for the first time since February.

Horticulture With the European apple harvest underway, crop quality is generally reported as good, with expectations of volumes across the board similar to 2019 – which will be pleasing news for New Zealand exporters. Early estimates have

Share of New Zealand Fruit and Nut NZD fob export receipts, year end June 2020

absence of a large European crop will be positive news for New Zealand’s exporters.

Exchange rate

the European apple harvest aligned to 2019, with supply from some key countries such as Poland and Italy forecast to be up, with France forecast down. New Zealand fresh apple exports overall have performed ahead of 2019, including to Europe, but with a slight softening in price as the season has progressed. New Zealand’s apple exports to Europe this year have been up in both volume and value but with a slight softening in the average local market prices per kg.

This has largely been offset by a depreciated NZ$ against the euro. With an eye to 2021, the

After a sustained rally lasting five months, the NZ$ finally fell against the US$ in September on rising concerns over the direction of the virus and US and EU economies. It was worth USc 65.9 on September 30, down USc 1.5 for the month. Domestically, the Reserve Bank of NZ announced on September 23 that it

would hold the OCR at 0.25 percent but continue with its Large Scale Asset Purchase Programme up to $100 billion to further lower household and business borrowing rates. Despite its recent fall, the NZ$ remains only marginally below pre-crisis levels. We expect the NZ$ to fall to USc 64 by the end of March 2021 as we see investors adjust downwards their expectations for global growth, and risk appetite continues to wane as geopolitics deteriorate.

NZ currency against the US dollar

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Time to go! WHILE THIS is being written prior to election day, it is pretty obvious the Labour Party is going to be returned to government in one form or another. As Jacinda Ardern considers her new ministry, she needs to make a new and positive start with the country’s farming sector by replacing David Parker as Environment Minister. Parker is stubbornly refusing to take on board the genuine, sensible, science-backed feedback about some aspects of his new freshwater regulations. He has glibly and arrogantly dismissed the concerns raised at recent rallies in Southland as ‘catastrophising’ the issue. He refuses to admit parts of the legislation are fundamentally flawed and claims these errors can be fixed by ‘tweaking’ the law. That is a nonsense – bad laws should never be passed in the first place. It was Parker’s job to get it right in the first place. Retrospective tweaking is simply making policy on the hoof. There wouldn’t have been a bad law and all this kerfuffle if the Government had listened to the feedback a year ago. Parker’s inflexibility and dogmatic approach doesn’t fit with the ‘be kind’ call from Ardern. Yet where has she been in this debate? A toast to an absent friend may be appropriate. Parker owes farmers and the whole of the rural community a big apology for what has happened. He is stressing out farmers and people in rural communities. How long will it take before somebody cracks under the stress and some terrible consequences unfold? That is a real possibility. Meanwhile, Parker has displayed his pettiness by seeking to marginalise Federated Farmers throughout this whole debate. That is wrong and spiteful. Feds represent the farming sector – much as the unions represent workers. The future of the NZ economy post Covid, which has been said time-and-time again by Ardern and other government ministers, will rely on our primary sector. Southland Feds’ Bernadette Hunt has excelled as a farming leader – the voice of reason – using sound argument and making Parker accountable – as well as getting wider community support. It’s a pity that the farming leaders at DairyNZ, Beef+Lamb NZ and Hort NZ have not been more vocal and publicly supportive of Feds. Can the new government afford to have an ongoing feud with farmers who are the backbone of our economy? It’s time for change and for someone who understands rural communities and issues – and is willing to work alongside them – to take over the environment portfolio.


HEAD OFFICE POSTAL ADDRESS: PO Box 331100, Takapuna, Auckland 0740 PUBLISHER: Brian Hight ......................................... Ph 09 307 0399 GENERAL MANAGER: Adam Fricker ....................................... Ph 021-842 226 CONSULTING EDITOR: David Anderson .................................. Ph 09 307 0399 davida@ruralnews.co.nz

“I’ll open the press when you tell me who you supported to win, McClosky!”

Want to share your opinion or gossip with the Hound? Send your emails to: hound@ruralnews.co.nz

THE HOUND Bollocks

Good questions

YOUR OLD mate reckons that while Fonterra has done a reasonable job over the past year or so of turning around the ship and getting the co-op back on track, it’s still a little too fond of treating farmers like mushrooms – i.e. keeping them in the dark and feeding them manure! The latest example came after the dairy co-op announced it had finally quit the billion dollar-plus disaster that was its China Farms investment. Even blind Freddy can see that if you spend well north of $1 billion – as Fonterra did on its China Farms ‘investment’ – and sell it for $555 million, then it has been a pants-down, abject failure. However, the arrogance at Gumboot Castle (Fonterra HQ) is so great that chief executive Miles Hurrell tried to spin this absolute cluster as a “financial loss” but “strategic win”. Really? If that’s the case, then the Hound has a bridge in Auckland (slightly damaged) that he can sell Fonterra.

THE HOUND reckons the discovery that a key Ministry for the Environment (MfE) official, who is leading that organisation’s submissions on regional council plan changes in regard to freshwater, is a card carrying vegan should raise alarm bells in the MfE hierarchy, as should the role he plays interacting with the agricultural sector. One only has to do a quick Google search of ‘Rowan Taylor and veganism’ to see how much of a fundamentalist he actually is. This obvious conflict of interest was outlined by North Otago farmer Jane Smith – detailed in this fine publication – and raises legitimate concerns about just how the farming sector can get an unbiased, impartial and balanced attitude from MfE when Taylor is involved. Was MfE aware of Taylor’s personal views in regard to animal farming? If so, what steps has it taken to ensure any real or perceived bias has been mitigated?

PRODUCTION: Dave Ferguson ...................... Ph 027 272 5372 davef@ruralnews.co.nz Becky Williams .......................Ph 021 100 4381 beckyw@ruralnews.co.nz REPORTERS: Sudesh Kissun ........................ Ph 021 963 177 sudeshk@ruralnews.co.nz Peter Burke ........................... Ph 021 224 2184 peterb@ruralnews.co.nz MACHINERY EDITOR: Mark Daniel ............................. Ph 021 906 723 markd@ruralnews.co.nz

Nice retort!

Ironic YOUR CANINE crusader had to have a laugh at the gall of Bitch&Complain (Fish&Game) when promoting the recent opening of the trout and salmon fishing season. In one of its media puff pieces – including lovely pictures – the organisation publicised a number of fishers using Lake Opuha in South Canterbury on opening day. It’s funny how Bitch&Complain spends more of its time bagging farmers and irrigators than it does actually promoting fishing. Which is doubly ironic, when one considers that fishing would not be taking place at Lake Opuha unless a bunch of forward thinking local farmers and irrigators created this water body, which now not only provides valuable water for irrigation, but also excellent recreational fishing and boating opportunities. Perhaps the fish heads should think about that next time they have another crack at the farming sector!

THIS OLD mutt hears that Fed Farmers president Andrew Hoggard has finally got an apology of sorts from Agriculture Minister (well he still was at the time of writing) Damien O’Connor for him and his “good mate” David Parker for accusing the Feds of leaking confidential details of the freshwater regulations last year. Better late than never. Meanwhile, earlier this month, Hoggard fronted a meeting in Ashburton where some 1,000 farmers and 200 townies turned up to hear about the impact the new freshwater rules will have on farming. Apparently, the Feds president was at one stage accused of “lacking the balls” in tackling devastating and negative effects of the new rules. The Hound had to laugh at Hoggard’s later quip that he may have to bring his children along to future meetings to prove his ability in this department.

AUCKLAND SALES REPRESENTATIVE: Stephen Pollard .......................... Ph 021 963 166 stephenp@ruralnews.co.nz

WELLINGTON SALES REPRESENTATIVE: Ron Mackay ................................. Ph 021 453 914 ronm@ruralnews.co.nz

WAIKATO SALES REPRESENTATIVE: Ted Darley .................................. Ph 021 832 505 ted@ruralnews.co.nz

SOUTH ISLAND SALES REPRESENTATIVE: Kaye Sutherland ....................... Ph 021 221 1994 kayes@ruralnews.co.nz

ABC audited circulation 79,553 as at 31/03/2019

DIGITAL STRATEGIST: Jessica Wilson ......................Ph 027 535 2534

Rural News is published by Rural News Group Ltd. All editorial copy and photographs are subject to copyright and may not be reproduced without prior written permission of the publisher. Opinions or comments expressed within this publication are not necessarily those of staff, management or directors of Rural News Group Ltd.



How we react governs how we act FROM MY quotes file, here is one that I have rather sadly seen lived out up close and personal, too many times to recall. “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% of how I react to it.” I accept there could be some leeway to debate the 10% and 90% thing, maybe 20% and 80%. But the fact still remains there is certainly much truth packed into these few words. For starters, all of us make mistakes. We all “suffer” from the condition I call humanness.

That’s the 10%, remember! The real biggie, the 90% is still with you – regardless of who keeps the seats warm in the Beehive! With the people we have journeyed with over


Colin Miller

can just be the result of our own foolishness. To illustrate, when you continually spend more than you earn, for sure “the fat will hit the fan” at some point. Wisdom will try to instruct you to curb

One person can get quite bitter, while another comes through the same experience better. Human beings make mistakes and plenty of them; we all do. To illustrate, I have what many would consider to be an impeccable driving record. As I have three licenses, I have clocked up some serious miles over more than five decades. My good record is certainly not because I have never made any errors of judgement, or any rather mindless mistakes – far from it! To date, my errors of judgement and common mindless mistakes have not been too costly, for me or for any other road users. Of course, how we react or respond to our mistakes is crucial. They are great learning opportunities for some folk, but yet another opportunity for many to simply blame someone else. Added to this, life can throw up some nasty stuff in your face from time to time. The unplanned, the unexpected, the nightmare stuff we never thought would hit us. Relationship betrayal and breakdown, financial loss and hopelessness, or perhaps a totally unexpected medical diagnosis. And the list goes on… and on. The storms of life, with the occasional tsunami thrown in. Yes, stuff happens to humans! Wisdom will help us avoid some dramas. It’s true, sometimes things

the shopping. But if you refuse to heed wisdom’s voice, you will reap what you sow. Back to our quote: It really is quite something to see this lived out in people’s lives. Being pastors for more than three decades, we got to walk with people through some pretty ugly and just plain horrible stuff! One person can get quite bitter, while another comes through the same experience better. Not bitter, but better! Another can forgive and move forward very healthily, while someone else gets consumed and eaten-up by hatred. You can see the very different reactions and responses with family members too, even with twins. They have pretty much experienced the same stuff but responded very differently. A healthy result verses an unhealthy one. Now, obviously I am writing this before Saturday 17, to meet my deadline. If the polls happen to be correct, then my guess is many in the rural sector will see the elections outcome as yet another punch in the guts. Hopefully, I am wrong, and will be very happy to be so, if the farming sector gets a good outcome. Back to our quote again, stuff happens.

many years, plus with my own dramas personally, I have seen the real positive difference an active faith makes. Also, true friends are worth more than their weight in gold in times like I’ve men-

tioned above. And yes, the Lord surely has been a friend

like no other. Take care and God bless.

• To Colin Miller email: farmerschaplain@ ruralnews.co.nz


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Back the sector that backs NZ New Zealand’s sheep and beef farming sector has shown it is critical to our country’s Covid-19 recovery, according to Beef+Lamb NZ chief executive Sam McIvor. He says the industry wants to work with the newly elected government to ensure policy settings support the sector’s prosperity and contribution to the wider economy. THE BIGGEST issue currently facing our industry is environmental policy. Farmers are passionate about being good stewards of their land and want to do the right thing. However, the scale and pace of new government

regulations is impacting the financial viability of farming, affecting farmers’ confidence in their industry and having adverse effects on mental health. In the next government term, we need to see improvements in the

essential freshwater regulations to make the rules workable for farmers so they can get on with achieving the desired water health outcomes. Meanwhile, the government must get fossil fuel emitters to reduce their emissions

New Zealand’s sheep and beef farming sector is critical to our country’s Covid-19 recovery. CREDIT PAUL SUTHERLAND PHOTOGRAPHY




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rather than just planting their pollution on our farms. Limits must be set on the amount of offsetting allowed in the ETS before it’s too late and further swathes of productive sheep and beef farmland are converted to forestry for carbon farming. The RMA isn’t the right tool to fix this problem, but we can work with the government on what is. We acknowledge action needs to be taken on the environment, but there are farmer and industry-led ways to achieve positive outcomes without unwieldy rule changes – improvements in winter grazing practices over the past two years are a case in point.

We also need some breathing space for our sector and a halt on new environmental policies from the new government. We need to give farmers time to focus on implementing what has already been legislated in the last couple of years. B+LNZ is working on a new farm planning process focused on the environment that will help farmers meet their regulatory requirements for water, climate change and biodiversity. These will also add value to their farm businesses and help meet customer needs. We want this farm planning process to be accepted as the certified farm plan for essential freshwater.

New Zealand sheep and beef farmers lead the world – we farm more naturally in our free-range systems and use fewer resources than our overseas, often highly industrialised, competitors. We need the government and officials to acknowledge this in the way they develop policy and not rely on overseas studies, and we need them to support us in telling our stories. If we don’t address these and other important issues facing our sector, our ability to generate export income and support tens of thousands of New Zealand jobs will be jeopardised. @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews

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An ode to the ‘beloved’ sheep yards

One of 14 year-old Rosa Macaulay’s favourite places is her poppa’s sheep yards.

When 14-year-old Lincoln High School student Rosa Macaulay was asked to write story about her favourite room, instead of choosing her bedroom like most 14-year-old girls, she chose her grandfather’s sheep yards. POPPA’S SHEEP yards: my ‘room’ of sorts. Rain hail or shine, this is where it all comes together. Dust clouds the atmosphere during the warm summer months. Mud, frost and debris cling to every roughened surface greeting the wholesome chill of South Canterbury’s harshest winters. Outside the covered yards, the rest of the farm-scape can be seen

into a land tied together with new-found freshness and beauty. Our beloved sheepyards become a sanctuary, where new life is born and nursed through its first steps of the lamb life. Come summer, the once young and frightful have grown into themselves, spending their joyous days bounding over the land as they gain their independence. The

sheep-yards await these harsh days when the animals long to take

shelter from the elements that drive them in. Soon the cycle will

repeat itself, but our beloved sheep-yards will always be the timeless

constant, the beating heart of our efforts to tie everything together, year

after year. @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews

A good start goes a long way.

A beautiful combination of Poppa and Dad’s ribbons line the walls, holding the strength and detail within these weather-beaten walls. landscape growing into itself also, the lush of spring’s openness fading, replacing itself with a glassed shade of brownness tanned by the harsh sun and constant slow blowing of the wind. As the heat of the summer gathers itself, so does the pressure within the beloved sheep-yards, the milestone of weaning brings stress but new confidence to the lambs as they find themselves. Come autumn, some will have gone, some will remain ruling the land they grew up on. This timeless season sweeps the landscape effortlessly, tainting it a warm shade of beautiful colours and light. The sky a darker hue of colour signalling the arrival of harsher weather soon. Our beloved sheepyards will stay as they are, ever evolving and shaping the environment around them as they always have. Come winter, a new darker shade takes hold of the landscape, bringing with it more extreme weather, occasionally dusting the farm in white. The dampness and wet is long awaited though, even if the mud and ruggedness of the stubborn landscape is the catch. Our beloved

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from miles away. The gentle roll of the hills, the shelter belts and imposing deer fencing framing them; remaining from the farm’s previous inhabitants. Down the bank further is the woolshed, the beating heart of the operations – a rustic but homely place of pride and memories embedded deep in the past. A beautiful combination of Poppa and Dad’s ribbons line the walls, holding the strength and detail within these weather-beaten walls. Many sounds create a chorus within these wooden walls. Sounds of the normal to us: dogs barking, muffled shouts of elation and disappointment coming from Dad and Poppa, the rustle and bustle of the sheep. Often a riot of choice words forms, lost on the fleeting minds of the livestock as they stumble through the yards out into the peace of the openness outside. Come spring, the pleasure and pain of lambing will overwhelm us. The grass blushed a rich shade of green signalling the warmth of what is to come. The landscape evolving from winter’s sighing bleakness



Sustainable approach helps boosts productivity An East Coast farm is enjoying a dramatic increase in productivity, despite retiring 10% of the land – proving that farming sustainably doesn’t have to come at an economic cost. SINCE 2015 when they started managing Puketitiri sheep and beef farm Taramoa – located midway between Taupo and Hastings – Dan and Billie Herries have continued the previous managers’ devotion to enhancing its biodiversity. Their hard work was recognised with a suite of awards in the 2020 East Coast Ballance Farm Environment Awards. More than 20,000 native plants have been planted, all waterways have been fenced and a comprehensive predator trapping network now covers the whole property. “We often think that if we do all this stuff we’ll lose productivity. However, the combination of these things all add up, meaning our financial performance has increased dramatically,” Dan Herries says. For example, fencing

off waterways not only creates a riparian corridor for native species, it also reduces stock losses from drowning. And creating robust shelter belts of native plants has the bonus of boosting young animal survival rates. “It’s pretty daunting at first and we’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way – we’ve learnt by doing,” he adds. “But it’s been worth it. It’s amazing now and gives us a great sense of satisfaction. You can’t let it overwhelm you and it’s important to take breaks from it.” Herries says a good approach is to pick the highest priority area to retire and just do that one. “We didn’t do a whole farm plan to start with – we just did it year-byyear. It’s not so daunting now that we’ve broken it down.” Key drivers for the

Herries are Taramoa’s location – between the Kaweka Forest Park and Ball’s Clearing Scenic Reserve – and the fact they have kiwi on their property, along with other rare native species. The couple felt obligated to create a riparian corridor to connect the two reserves – enabling animals to safely travel back and forth and also creating a crucial part of their trapping network. “It’s a pretty big motivator to keep trapping when you’re out on the farm with the kids at dusk and you hear the kiwi calls.” The family traps feral cats, rats and mustelids, and the hard work is paying off. From 80 mustelid traps, just one stoat was caught in the past month. “Stoats are the biggest threat because they kill a lot of birds, including kiwi chicks, and cause a lot of disturbance. Birds

Taramoa farm managers Billie and Dan Herries are proof that farming sustainably doesn’t have to come at an economic cost. PHOTO COURTESY NZ FARM ENVIRONMENT TRUST.

won’t even nest when they’re around.” Herries says he has learned a lot about farming from podcasts – par-

ticularly those created by Beef+Lamb NZ. “We need our hands when we’re working and don’t want to be stuck

too long in the office. With podcasts you can listen to them when feeding out in the tractor and pick up little tips as you

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go,” he adds. “I’ve been absolutely blown away at the resources available.” @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews



Precision tech helps farmer get it right Mid-Canterbury arable and dairy farmer Craige Mackenzie’s philosophy is right input, right quantity, right place, right time — which makes sense for his business and for the land, waterways and climate. Conditions often aren’t in his favour, but precision technology is helping to even the odds. GETTING TO grips with highly variable weather and soil quality is a constant challenge on Craige Mackenzie’s cropping and dairy farm, near Methven, in Mid-Canterbury. However, precision technology is proving a powerful ally. After mapping his soils and crunching the numbers, Mackenzie discovered that potential yields varied significantly across his farm. He realised that he was overdoing the inputs in places, which wasn’t good for the bottom line or the environment. The numbers

revealed he was losing money in some areas. It became clear to Mackenzie that optimising outputs across the farm would mean growing different crops in different places and applying different amounts of fertiliser and water at different times— on both the cropping and dairying sides of the operation. “Getting that base right was important,” he says. Then Mackenzie started looking at variability through the growing season as well – and

that’s where precision technology has really come into its own. Using data from soil maps, spatial soil sampling, yield analyses and nitrogen scanners, Mackenzie can calculate exactly how much fertiliser is needed in different areas of the farm. He uses rainfall data, soil moisture probes and evapotranspiration sensors to work out where water is needed and where it isn’t. He also consults highresolution weather forecasts to see if nature is likely to deliver that water in the right dose

Craige Mackenzie’s farming philosophy is right input, right quantity, right place and right time.

at the right time – or if irrigation is needed. GPS-driven variable-rate irrigators, sprayers and fertiliser applicators are then put to work, delivering precise doses exactly where they’re needed. The results speak for themselves.

In 2015, Mackenzie’s cropping programme used 95 tonnes of urea. However, in 2019 it only used 77 tonnes. Some of this reduction resulted from a different mix of crops. But a lot was due to his use of technology and

spatially targeted application with variable-rate fertiliser spreaders. In addition, in 2020, Mackenzie has exclusively used N Protect, which is coated with a urease inhibitor to reduce any possible volatilisation to the atmosphere. All nitro-

gen is applied in front of either a rainfall event or an irrigator to increase efficiency. Water use is also down by half during some seasons, when compared with similar seasons in the past. Mackenzie admits that the high-tech approach might not work everywhere. However, he believes his careful investments made in precision technology have all paid off within 12-24 months. “Sustainability needs to be built into our businesses, not bolted on.” Sourced from the AgMatters website, which is funded by the Ministry for Primary Industries and managed by the New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre (NZAGRC). @rural_news facebook.com/ruralnews

Glenview Romneys Bred for high performance and ‘cast iron’ constitution

We deliberately challenge our Romneys by farming them on unfertilised native hill country in order to provide the maximum selection pressure and expose ‘soft’ sheep.


Over the last 5 years ewes (including 2ths) have scanned between 190% and 216% despite droughts.

GROWTH RATE Over the same period weaning weights (adj. 100 days) have exceeded 36kg from a lambing % consistently above 150%. & SURVIVAL COMMENTS: • All sheep DNA and SIL recorded. • No crops are grown and no supplements are fed. • Ram hoggets have been eye muscle scanned since 1996. • All ewe hoggets are mated. • Breeding programme places a heavy emphasis on worm resilience – lambs drenched only once prior to autumn. • Scored for dags and feet shape. DNA rated for footrot and cold tolerance. • We take an uncompromising approach – sheep must constantly measure up.

We aim to breed superior Romneys that produce the most from the least input.

Glenview Romneys & South Suffolks GEOFF & BARB CROKER Longbush, RD 4, Masterton email: bob_barb@slingshot.co.nz www.glenviewromneys.co.nz Phone 06-372 7820



Strategic planning a key focus f RED MEAT Profit Partnership (RMPP) Action Group member Charlie Riddell says while there have been good lessons from the subject matter experts, he has learned just as much from other members of the group. Charlie and wife Trudy farm sheep and beef on

1350 ha at Ti-Tree Point, east of Dannevirke, and are members of an action group focused on business and strategic planning. “A lot of us are at the same stage in our farming careers, so there are a lot of similarities,” he says. “Trudy and I have

completed our succession planning during our time with the group. That came up a lot in the expert presentations and some of the other members shared their experiences of succession, so that all definitely helped.” The group was launched in June 2018

and is facilitated by Simon Marshall, a production vet with Vet Services Dannevirke. “As a business, the practice saw it as an opportunity for farmer clients and held meetings to see what interest there was around different topics,” Marshall

explains. There are seven farm businesses, all farming couples, in the Business and Strategic Planning Action Group. All are sheep and beef farmers from central Hawke’s Bay and Tararua who all wanted to get an overarching view of their farm

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businesses and how they were doing. They also wanted to have goals for what their businesses are trying to achieve. A major focus was to ensure every one of the member businesses had developed a strategic business plan and this has now been achieved. “For the first meeting we did a swot analysis for each farm business and got them to write down their goals,” Marshall adds. “We did short term, medium term and longterm goals – and that really got us to the point that we knew this was the right topic for everyone.” For the second meeting, the group brought in Matt Hood, senior rural manager for Rabobank in Masterton. “Matt focused a lot on understanding the resource you have in your land and your people, because once you know exactly what you have got, you can better work to get the most out of it,” Marshall says. “He talked about finding your ‘true

north’ – your internal compass, based on your deeply held beliefs, values and principles – and how, even if you go off path, you can look to that to always guide you.” For the third meeting, the group undertook a field trip to Havelock North, led by rural facilitator David Todd, including meeting with Mission Estate Winery chief executive Peter Holley. It also included a visit to the BEL Group dairy farming operation where their GM Cameron Gillatt talked about use of strategic business plans in their group and how they use them to guide their onfarm programmes. “That really opened our group members’ eyes to the fact that where businesses are using plans, they can be adapted to suit most scenarios,” Marshall adds. “It gave a working knowledge of strategic plans and gave them confidence they could use a plan on their farms. Seeing evidence of a plan in action



for action group member KEEPING CONNECTED SIMON MARSHALL says while Covid-19 has impacted on the group, connectivity and discussion between group members has continued. “That is a huge part of the action group benefits,” he says. “The subject matter experts are very important but the peer-to-peer learning is massive too.” Marshall concedes that while it is hard to quantify yet what on-farm changes might have come out of the group. However, he believes this will follow in time, for instance, through their environmental focus. “They are influencing one another, that is for sure, and they have started to question their policy and how that lines up with their strategic plan, and really look at what they want to achieve. Everyone drew up their goals, for some it is more profit, for others it’s to be able to spend more time with family or improve their staff management.” Meanwhile, Riddell says one of the major lessons that he and Trudy have taken from the group is to look at diversifying the skills they learned in their farming business. “For me, a major takeout has been not to hold yourselves back, don’t limit yourselves. There is a lot of potential to diversify into other areas outside of agriculture.”

Dannevirke farmer Charlie Riddell says one of the major lessons that he has taken from the group is to look at diversifying the skills he’s learned in his farming business.

gives more confidence about using one yourself.” Riddell says that hearing about strategic planning from people both in and outside of agriculture

was beneficial. “It was very good to hear different ideas from people outside of the industry, but which you could still apply to your farm business,” he says.

The next session was the RMPP-developed Taking Ownership of Your Financials workshop, which was led by local ANZ banker Dan Billing.

“A lot of the members have goals of increasing profit, so they found that very helpful in terms of understanding what their numbers are,” Marshall says. “It helped them to

understand why they are achieving, or not achieving, that goal.” Masterton agribusiness consultant Sam Jury also provided a session focused on ensuring all

the members had completed strategic business plans. “Sam brought along a template but also helped them to understand there is no right or wrong way – you can use the template and adapt it to incorporate your ideas. Up to that point, I think they all wanted to be told how to write the plan, but that session gave them the confidence to complete it themselves, their way,” Marshall adds. He says now that the group members all have their strategic plans in place they can look at the

Why do we claim we’re the most sustainable dairy producers in the world? Because we are A litre of our milk shipped to Ireland would still have a lower emissions profile than milk produced over there. Yep, we’ve taken on the challenge of sustainability, and we’re winning. Why? Because we’re dairy farmers, and we rise to a challenge. And it’s in these moments we shine.


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specific areas members want to focus on to help them with their plans. “For instance, they want to look at environmental issues. So, we did a field trip to a farm in the Stoney Creek catchment and met with Alistair Cole of NZ Landcare Trust and Alice Bradley, Environment Projects Manager at Beef + Lamb New Zealand,” Marshall says. “That really got the members thinking about front footing work around environmental regulations and got movement going there.”



BVD control in beef herds AMANDA KILBY

BVD IS a common but devastating viral infection of cattle. Recent economic modelling by Massey University estimates BVD outbreaks in naïve beef herds cost more than $200 per cow*. BVD’s most costly impacts are on pregnant cattle and their unborn calves. If pregnant cows are infected with BVD prior to 35 days of gestation, the pregnancy is usually lost. This can decimate next season’s calf crop. Between 35 and 125 days of gestation, BVD infection most often causes the calf to become persistently infected with the virus (“PI”). PIs shed BVD in their saliva, faeces and reproductive secretions for their entire lives and are the main source of BVD transmission to naïve cows or herds. If a pregnant cow is infected with BVD beyond 125 days of gestation, sometimes her calf is born normal. However, it may also suffer birth defects – such as stunting, eye abnormalities, and immune suppression, which could limit its future productivity. Because the costliest impacts of BVD are on pregnant cattle and their

unborn calves, protecting heifers and cows from infection during mating and gestation is critical. You can do this through vigilant biosecurity, or by vaccinating prior to mating with a BVD vaccine demonstrated to provide foetal protection. Biosecurity means preventing pregnant cattle from having contact with any animals of an unknown BVD status (potential PIs). To ensure good BVD biosecurity, all animals within your herd should be blood or ear-

If pregnant cows are infected with BVD prior to 35 days of gestation, the pregnancy is usually lost. This can decimate next season’s calf crop.

notch tested to see if they are PIs. If they are, they should be culled. Animals from outside the herd – which may have contact with your pregnant cattle – should also be BVD virus

tested negative. Barriers, such as boundary fences with outriggers, should be used to separate your pregnant cattle from untested animals. If you share yards or equipment with cattle of an

unknown BVD status, cleaning and disinfecting between mobs – or spelling facilities for 7 days – will minimise the risk of BVD transmission. If, like on most farms in New Zealand, strict biosecurity isn’t always possible – then vaccinating cows and heifers prior to mating each year with a vaccine (with a label claim for foetal protection) will help prevent transmission of BVD virus through the placenta to the calf. This means that even if the

dam is exposed to BVD during pregnancy, her pregnancy should be protected. All BVD vaccines available in New Zealand are killed vaccines, requiring two doses in the first year and annual boosters thereafter to continue to protect the vaccinated animal. However, each BVD vaccine has demonstrated different durations of protection for the vaccinated cow’s unborn calf. For example, New Zealand’s leading BVD vaccine – Bovilis BVD – prevents the virus from infecting the vaccinated cow’s unborn calf for at least 6 months following the initial sensitiser and booster and at least 12 months following a third dose. This is the longest demonstrated duration of foetal protection available in the country. You can achieve yearround protection for your herd’s pregnancies by giving replacement heifers two shots of Bovilis BVD in their first year of life (as R1s) and all other cows and heifers an annual booster each year. This type of vaccination program is likely to be the most cost-effective way to control BVD for many New Zealand

beef herds*. Vaccinating with Bovilis BVD to maintain 12 months of foetal protection will help break the cycle of transmission, by covering the herd’s entire risk period for PI formation. It will also continue to protect pregnancies from the late gestation effects of BVD. Furthermore, it allows for flexibility of annual booster timing. If you need to give your annual herd booster pre-calving rather than pre-mating, the subsequent mating’s pregnancies will still be protected from BVD. There’s never a good time for a pregnant animal to get BVD. Protecting pregnant cattle throughout gestation, with biosecurity and/or vaccination, is the only way to break the cycle of BVD transmission in the long-term. It will also minimise the cost of BVD infection. You should discuss your BVD vaccination options with your vet. • Amanda Kilby is a technical veterinarian at MSD Animal Health (*Reference: Han, JH. et al. (2020). Modelling the economics of bovine viral diarrhoea virus control in pastoral dairy and beef cattle herds. Massey University PhD Thesis.)

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If an unborn calf is infected with BVD prior to 120 days gestation, it could be born persistently infected (Pl). That means it will spread the virus to other cattle for the rest of its life. So fetal protection is vital to breaking the cycle of BVD transmission. Vaccines in New Zealand provide varying durations of fetal protection, meaning unborn calves could become PIs if BVD exposure happens at the wrong time. Bovilis BVD is the only vaccine that has demonstrated 12 months fetal protection after the 3rd dose – the longest coverage available. Booster cows and heifers with Bovilis BVD and this season’s pregnancies will be protected no matter when they are conceived. So why risk it? Ask your vet for Bovilis BVD by name and get 12 months peace of mind.

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Plan for internal parasite management AS THIS season’s lamb crop hits the ground, farmers are being urged to make an internal parasite management plan for the coming season. Dannevirke-based vet and Wormwise national spokesperson Simon

Marshall, says if farmers are considering drenching ewes at docking, they should carry out out Faecal Egg Counts (FECs) on a sample of ewes first. The results of the FECs, in combination

with body condition scores and pasture cover assessments, will help determine whether ewes need a drench at that time. But lambs are the focus in spring and farmers should be working with their vet or animal

With new lambs on the ground farmers are being urged to make an internal parasite management plan for the coming season.

health provider now to put together a drench plan for this season. This means deciding what drench to use and if using drench leftover from last season, whether it is still within the expiry date and has been stored

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correctly. Drench guns should be checked and correctly calibrated. At every drenching, a sample of animals should always be weighed to ensure stock are being given the correct dose. Marshall says the decision about which drench family or families to use should be based on a FEC reduction test carried out in conjunction with a vet, in summer or autumn. This test shows which drench families are effective and highlights any drench resistance issues. “Plan to do one this coming season and talk to your vet about getting a test done. It needs to be planned well in advance.” Marshall says some farmers carry out a preweaning lamb drench as a matter of course, while others give lambs their first drench at weaning. This depends on the weaning dates, but many farmers are weaning earlier, so should discuss their options with their vet or advisor. After weaning, it is important farmers stick to the 28-30-day drenching routine and look at using refugia. This means planning how they are

going to achieve it, ensuring everyone on the farm team knows how it works and how it is being implemented. FECs taken seven to 10 days after the first or second lamb drench – from lambs known to have been drenched correctly – will show the efficacy of the drench being used. A parasite cycle is around 21 days, so a test at 25 days will indicate a worm problem. “If you don’t need to drench when lambs are on these crops, then carry out FECs to monitor the lambs’ worm status and inform drench decisions.” He adds that the most effective parasite management strategy is either finishing lambs quickly or selling lambs as stores. “Lambs are the best multipliers of parasites so when the lambs are off the farm, they are not multiplying parasites and they are out of the system.” Going into autumn, FECs carried out well before mating will indicate whether two-tooth and mixed-age ewes need a drench before the ram goes out. Source Beef+Lamb NZ


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New drenches aim to give cattle a ‘Turbo’ boost NEW ZEALAND owned and operated company Alleva Animal Health is claiming a series of world-firsts with four new drench formulas that come together in a drench programme for cattle. The programme is split out into three key stages of growth and it says each product contains a world-first formula that targets parasites that are particularly prevalent during that stage. Along with parasite coverage, the company says it has invested heavily in ensuring this programme also meets other requirements for farmers – including using active ingredients that are high potency and provide a wide margin of safety when treating cattle. The range includes four products, including Turbo Initial – an oral drench specifically designed for weaned calves. Alleva says it provides worm parasite coverage, as well as helping to protect against coccidiosis and the combination bridges the gap between calves coming off coccidiostat treated meal onto pasture where their natural coccidiosis immunity has not yet developed.

Alleva’s Turbo injection is offered as an alternate treatment for cattle that are too large for an oral drench.

“To be able to provide farmers with one product that meets their needs in terms of worm control as well as coccidiosis coverage for young stock is massive” says Alleva Animal Health general

manager Blair Loveridge. “The initial feedback from vets has been really positive and it’s great timing with dairy calf weaning just around the corner.” The second prod-

uct in the range is also an oral drench named Turbo Advance. This targets cattle in that second stage of growth, where coccidiosis immunity has developed and they are still a safe size to drench

orally. The company claims this world-first combination provides farmers with internal parasite control and trace elements within that high potency, wide margin of

safety formula. It can also be used on cattle under 120kg, which is often not an option with many other drench combinations, allowing for variations in growth rates within mobs.

“We’ve listened to the market and worked with vets to iron out as many pain points of cattle drench options in New Zealand as we can,” Loveridge adds. “The result is really exciting and a huge leap forward in terms of efficacy and safety in cattle drenches.” Meanwhile, Turbo Pour-on and Injection are alternate treatments for the third stage of growth, suitable for cattle that are too large for an oral drench. Turbo Pour-on uses the DMI-Sorb rain resistant technology created by Alleva to meet New Zealand’s weather conditions, along with yet another world-first formula extending safety margins and potency levels compared to other combinations. It says that Turbo Injection offers the same benefits for parasite control, along with protection against sucking lice. “We know farmers have enough to do without worrying about the perfect drench programme,” Loveridge says. “The Turbo range gives farmers a programme to work through with their vet and target those parasites at specific stages of growth.”

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12 months fetal protection helps break the BVD cycle.



Fendt’s Ideal combine harvester series all use the Helix threshing unit and separation system.

Fendt enters NZ harvest market MARK DANIEL markd@ruralnews.co.nz

FARM MACHINERY brand Fendt has expanded into the harvester market in Australia and New Zealand, with is Ideal combine harvester. Built at AGCO’s European Harvesting Centre of Excellence in Breganze, Italy, the 4-model range dubbed Ideal 7, 8, 9 and 10. The machines are offered from 451 to 790 HP, the entry model utilising an AGCO Power engine, while the three larger units feature high-output MAN power plants. Ideal uses the Helix threshing unit and separation system. This utilises single (Ideal 7) and twin longitudinal rotors (8, 9 and 10) of 4.84m long and 600mm diam-

eter. To handle the crop gently, yet ensure constant load on the rotors, intake augers, threshing bars and rotor fingers are arranged in a spiral around the rotors, like the typical DNA chain – hence the name Helix. With twin grain pans deal at the front of the threshing area, a rear grain pan only deals with material from the separation area, meaning the total area is fully utilised. The curve of the grain pans means the machines can maintain consistent output on slopes of up to 15%. The Ciclone cleaning system is designed to increase cleaning capacity, particularly on the Ideal 10, with a 4-channel system. Meanwhile, the curved, double cas-

MINOR COVID IMPACT ALTHOUGH COVID-19 has caused major problems in the agricultural machinery sector, German manufacturer Fendt looks to be on target to produce 18,700 tractors in 2020. The company recently confirmed that although it expected to fall a little short of its 20,000-unit target and the number will be slightly less than the 18,940 result in 2019, it will be a good result. Company spokesman Christoph Goblinghoff said that while tractor markets such as Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Sweden, Austria and Poland were holding or increasing sales

cade steps of the WavePan provide a wider area and more air flow. Automation of the threshing and cleaning elements uses Mass Acoustic Detection sensors (MADS) in the rotor and shaker shoe. This

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compared to last year, others such as France, Italy, UK and Spain were showing double-digit declines. Overall, it is expected that the European market will be down by around 6% from the 171,000 total units delivered in 2019. Looking at Fendt’s 2020 production, 16,700 will be delivered into the European market, representing a 10.5% share of the total. In its home country of Germany, the Marktoberdorf factory has achieved a market share of 28.4% in tractors over 51hp, which climbs to a 40.1% market share of the over 200hp sector.

detects crop flow and operating capacity. In combination with grain quality cameras, to allow accurate monitoring of grain losses, cracked grains and sample quality, the driver can adjust the ratio

between output and quality, depending on the circumstances. Designed to carry headers of up to 12.2 metres (40-feet) the grain tank capacity tops out at 17,100 litres, with a discharge rate of 210l/

second. This is said to be 15% greater than its nearest competitor. A narrow frame width of just 1400mm allows space for large tyre equipment or tracks, keeping transport widths within 3.3 or 3.5 metres, respectively. In the case of 26-inch wide tracks, the contact patch is around 2.55 square metres, helping to reduce ground compaction For quick shifts between paddocks, the AutoDock header system allows automated docking of hydraulics and electrics within five seconds. Meanwhile, RFID coding recognises the attachment and retrieves all the previous settings for the header control. Inside the cabin, alongside all the main

creature comforts seen in modern harvesters, such as suspended seat and climate control, the Ideal lacks one familiar control-the steering wheel. This is replaced by a speed sensitive joystick integrated into the left- hand armrest. This gives unhindered visibility to the full width of the cutter-bar and reduced driver effort. “The Fendt IDEAL is a high capacity and technology led combine that aligns perfectly with Fendt’s positioning in the professional broadacre sector,” says Jake Kerr, product marketing manager for harvesting at AGCO. “We’re very excited to be offering the harvester into the ANZ region.” www.fendt.com


STANDARD FEATURES Autofill | 11600 ltr capacity Exhaust silencer Full length sight glass Stone trap Hydraulic brakes Brackets for dribble bar


(options available)

Splash plate




Dribble bar not included

MUCK SPREADER SOUTH ISLAND www.cochranes.co.nz Call Alastair Robertson | 027 435 2642 AMBERLEY | LEESTON | ASHBURTON | TIMARU | OAMARU | WEST COAST

From 7m3 to 35m3. Molasses and mineral intake tubes for dietary requirements with front facing conveyor with side shift. Teaser rollers placed at door to break up clumps. 2 speed main gearboxes. Full chassis for strength.

NORTH ISLAND www.gaz.co.nz Call Jarred L’Amie 027 203 5022 CAMBRIDGE | OTOROHANGA | ROTORUA



Great hay cut at speed CONTRACTORS AND farmers on the lookout to mow and condition at higher speeds, while producing better quality hay and forage, will welcome the launch of John Deere’s new R310R Mower Conditioner (MoCo). Now available on the New Zealand market, the R310R is a 3.1m, vertical fold, rear-mounted machine that is claimed to be built for speed and performance – while offering manoeuvrability. John Deere says it is ideally suited to operations where paddock size suits nimble 100hp tractors. Marketing manager Fraser Scott claims the machine will deliver better-quality forage at a lower cost. “Over recent years both contactor and farming customers have told us they need a MoCo that can perform in tight paddocks and manoeuvre through narrow gateways and lanes,” he says. “As a vertical fold machine, the R310R meets both of those requirements.” Scott adds that oblique folding at 126 degrees and a pivoting point close to the tractor results in better weight balance and enhances stability – including when it is being road transported. “In fact, the machine can cover long transport distances at speeds of up to 50km/h – where local laws permit.” The R310R has been designed to cut cleanly and prevent chopping. Another feature of the machine is quick change

knives to minimise service times and give operators more hours cutting hay. “Compared to standard bolted knives, the time-saving capacity offered by quick change knives is striking,” Scott claims. “Further to this, it also has bolted-on, as opposed to welded-on, skid plates on the bottom of the cutterbar as another means to increase ease and speed of maintenance.” The R310R is said to hug ground contours even in extreme topographies, with knives and the cutterbar lifting to both avoid rises and ensure hay quality is not affected by the addition of dirt or stones to the windrow. Its adjustable hydraulic suspension also lowers ground pressure to protect plant cover, while keeping fuel consumption down and impurities out. John Deere has ensured the R310R can be specified with a tine impeller conditioner or rubber conditioning rollers to suit to a broad range of applications, from high-density crops to those which need to be handled more gently. “Safety is also something that has been prioritised through inclusion of a ‘break away’ function whereby if a foreign object such as a fence post is struck the machine will break away before automatically returning to the normal position,” Scott adds. “Effective overload protection of moving parts on the cutterbar in


All the latest stories and more at www.ruralnews.co.nz

case of impact with foreign objects is also a feature.” The R310R mower/conditioner is available for order now.

JD’s new R310R Mower Conditioner is said to be ideally suited to operations where paddock size suits nimble 100hp tractors.

TELEHANDLER TECHNOLOGY New best-in-class cab design.

f New redesigned and re-engineered cab, offering 12% larger cabin, 14% improved visibility and 10% faster demist time f Greater lifting performance across the range f Reduced running costs with improved fuel efficiency and improved serviceability, resulting in a superior return on investment

For your local dealer go to: claasharvestcentre.com



ATV has all the bells and whistles MARK DANIEL markd@ruralnews.co.nz

CFMOTO HAS launched the all-new CFORCE 625 EPS quad bike. The new ATV features

a shorter-wheelbase, longer-travel suspension, a 500kg tow capacity and a class-leading turning circle for optimum manoeuvrability around the farm.

Underpinning the new machine, the chassis has greater structural integrity and relocated swingarm mounting points for optimised movement and durability while a new


4 Hippos Farm Limited (SECTION 153 HEALTH AND SAFETY AT WORK ACT 2015) 4 Hippos Farm Limited was convicted and sentenced in the Invercargill District Court on 2 August 2019 for an offence against sections 38(1), 48(1) and (2)(c) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. The charge attracts a maximum fine of $1.5 million. The charge arose from an incident in which a worker’s hand was seriously injured when he was operating a woodsplitter machine. • 4 Hippos Farm Limited operates a dairy farm in Wyndham, Southland. Since 2016 it has also operated a firewood business from the farm, trading and selling firewood. The victim had been working for 4 Hippos Farm Limited for approximately two weeks. He was operating a wood splitter when he noticed some bark stuck near the blade. He reached for the bark with his left hand and at the same time, he inadvertently pressed one of the control levers with his right hand activating the blade. The blade descended and crushed the victim’s lef thand resulting in serious injuries. • WorkSafe’s investigation found that 4 Hippos Farm Limited failed to ensure that the wood splitter was without risk to the health and safety of the victim in that it failed to have an effective lock out tag out system for cleaning and maintenance, a safe procedure covering all aspects of the machine’s operation, to ensure that the machine could only be operated using both hands to depress the levers and provide effective training and supervision. • Judge Callaghan stated that the culpability of 4 Hippos Farm Limited was such that an appropriate fine was in the amount of $273,288. However, for reasons that cannot be published, no fine was imposed. The Judge ordered that reparation of $25,000 be paid to the victim plus an additional $16,110 for consequential loss and ordered the publication of this notice of the offence, its consequences and the penalty imposed.

Nelson y Hawkes Ba



The all-new CFORCE 625 EPS quad bike features a shorter-wheelbase, longer-travel suspension and a 500kg tow capacity.

dual A-arm suspension layout provides 270mm (+20%) suspension travel and better ride quality, with a 15% tighter turning circle of just 7.25 metres Power Is provided by a 580cc four-stroke, liquid cooled, Bosch EFI singlecylinder petrol engine. This delivers 41hp and 49Nm, which in turn is mated to an improved CVT transmission from CV Tech of Canada, where power has been tuned for a linear delivery and maximum versatility in all terrain and conditions. Further mechanical Improvements include an 18% larger radiator, a more powerful cooling

fan to maintain optimum operating temperature and a larger 600W magneto for a more powerful electrical system. For difficult or rugged terrain, switchable 2WD/4WD modes combine with front and rear differential locks are on hand and easily engaged by the touch of a button. Meanwhile, the choice of high or low ranges also helps to direct power to the task at hand. Bringing things to a safe controlled stop, falls to hydraulic disc brakes at all four wheels mated with a combined braking system, enhanced by the engine brake system.

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Further enhancements include a sharper exterior design with high output Ridevision LED lighting, new heavy-duty carrier racks with integrated quick release service covers and a large LCD digital dashboard with Bluetooth for smartphone connectivity. Other standard equipment highlights include a 3000lb winch, handguards, indicators, horn and mirrors – as well as the convenience of Electronic Power Steering (EPS). Towing is upgraded to 500kg from the previous 350kg limit, while front and rear cargo racks are rated at 35kg and 70kg

respectively. Priced from $9990 (plus GST) and backed by a two-year warranty, CFMOTO New Zealand director Michael Poynton says the new CFORCE 625 EPS is sure to be well-received among Kiwi farmers. “It’s loaded with workready features and, like all CFMOTO ATVs, it offers farmers unbeatable value for money,” he says. “It’s incredibly wellconstructed and ready for the relentless demands of New Zealand’s dairy farms, which are renowned for being the most brutal on farm equipment in the world – quite the title.”

Are you hitting your target market?

Contact your local sales representative for more information Auckland

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These tractors are pumping CLAAS HAS announced it will introduce a new automatic tyre inflation system across its AXION and ARION series of tractors. Offering an air delivery rate of up to 2800 L/ min via an auxiliary compressor, Claas claims the system can adjust the tyre pressure in 600/70 R28 and 710/70 R38 tyres from 0.8 bar (12 psi) to 1.8 bar (26 psi) in less than 80 seconds. Available as a factory fit option for all AXION 900 Stage V tractors, the CTIC or CTIC 2800 inflation systems can also be retrofitted to existing ARION 900/800 and ARION 600/500 series

machines, regardless of their year of manufacture. The system can be controlled via any ISOBUS terminal, such as the CLAAS S10 or the new CLAAS CEMIS 700. “The operator can switch between field and road pressure at the touch of a button using one of the function keys in the operating armrest or on the CMOTION control lever,” explains CLAAS Harvest Centre product manager Luke Wheeler. Based on ‘dialogue’, at the start of a job, the driver enters a range of information – such as soil humidity, soil type and working depth. As well

as machine data, such as tractor tyres and front, rear or wheel ballast and implement data into the CEBIS touchscreen terminal.

The system then recommends the best pressure for the front and rear tyres to reduce wheel slip, ground damage and diesel consumption.

Claas will introduce a new automatic tyre inflation system across its AXION and ARION series of tractors.


AFTER TWO false starts, brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, the French SIMA show will now reappear between 6 -10 November 2022. The announcement has wide support from the exhibitors who do not wish to expose their staff or the general public to the risks created by mass gatherings. Meanwhile, global player John Deere has suggested the furlough is a good time for a wider discussion on the cycle and positioning of international trade shows in Europe.

New Ranger

FORD NZ has announced the release of the Ranger FX4 Max, due to reach our shores in early 2021. Taking much of its design brief from the current range topping Raptor, featuring Fox suspension and dedicated off-road rubber-ware, the Max uses the same bi-turbo engine and 10-speed transmission. A big plus for prospective purchasers is an uprated payload of 981 kg (Raptor 750 kg) and a towing capacity of 3500 kg compared to the Raptor’s 2500 kg. This should ensure the vehicle appeals to those looking for a dual purpose-work and leisure machine.

Big cut

AUSTRIAN MANUFACTURER Pottinger has added the NOVACAT 402 ED to its range. With a working width of 3.88m it’s the biggest rear-mounted mower with conditioner on the market. The ED (extra dry) conditioner uses V-shaped tines of hardened steel, mounted on rubber blocks for an extended service life. A round, high-volume conditioner hood, partly manufactured from aluminium, offers adjustable guide vanes enables a widely spread blanket or swath formation. The hydraulic lower linkage arm ensures easy mounting, while a stabiliser cylinder holds the cutter-bar in place when it is raised. For transport, the mower is pivoted hydraulically to the rear by means of a double-acting cylinder.

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norwood.co.nz 0800 66 79 663


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Claas cargo wagon

ity and user comfort of its CARGOS dual purpose markd@ruralnews.co.nz transport wagons with CLAAS HAS extended the addition of new steerPhone: 0800 80 8570 ing options, increased the versatility, productivwww.burgessmatting.co.nz capacity and an ISOBUS terminal. All CARGOS 700 series models of wagons can now be equipped with a mechanically conRange of models sized 2 metres - 10 metres trolled hydraulic positive steering system as an morrifield alternative to the existing 40 YEARS passive or electronically controlled hydraulic positive steering systems. MORRIFIELD GREENHOUSES Thank you to our Valued Customers for Utilising your continued support over the the years disPROUD TO BE NEW ZEALAND MADE placement principle, the mechanical hydraulic Greenhouses www.morrifield.com positive steering system utilises one (tandem models) or two (tridem models) master cylinders MARK DANIEL

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CLAAS says it has extended the versatility, productivity and user comfort of its Cargos dual purpose transport wagons.

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The QuadGuard



CLAAS Harvest Centre product manager Luke Wheeler says the master cylinders are attached on the tractor side on Scharmüller K50 ball hitches, and each is protected with a robust bolted guard plate. “There are also pivoting supports for the master cylinders,” he says. “The steered axles are the rear in a tandem layout, and the first and last axles in a tridem chassis. “When the machine is in operation, the positive steering function is controlled by the tractor, without any permanent electrical connections.” Mechanical operation of the hydraulic system is said to allow optimum soil protection during reversing manoeuvres and provides excellent trailing

alignment on both level and sloping terrain. Additionally, all new CARGOS models can now be fitted with the ISOBUS-compatible CEMIS 700 universal terminals. This features a 7-inch, high-contrast colour display with touchscreen functionality, an automated day/night switch, 10 backlit hard keys and a rotary/push switch for easy operation. Other features include input from one or two cameras, ISO 11783 compatibility alongside Aux-O, Aux-N, UT1 and UT2 functions. On the capacity front, thanks to a platform gate extension, the capacity of the CARGOS 8400 dual-purpose wagon has increased by 7% to a DIN loading of 38 cubic metres.




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After 25 years of providing workwear to New Zealand farmers - our rainwear & footwear is the best it has ever been. We have a reasonable amount of stock arriving mid-October, but anticipate this will sell quickly. Thank you to all our customers who have supported us over the years! Earthwalk Buffalo Boots have WAXY thick buffalo hide uppers which are 175% more crack and water resistant than normal leather. The nitrile rubber outsole won’t crack, split or break down in soil. It is stitched to the buffalo leather upper... PHONE


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Proven beyo nd do ubt! “The Quadbar saved our employee from significant injuries.” – Colin van der Geest

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QUADBAR “I have no doubt that if I did not have a Quadbar fitted, my accident would have been fatal!” – Rozel Farms



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Profile for Rural News Group

Rural News 20 October 2020  

Rural News 20 October 2020

Rural News 20 October 2020  

Rural News 20 October 2020