Author Archive

Report recommends moving Marlborough salmon farms

 [14 February/Radio NZ] A report has recommended that three Marlborough Sounds salmon farms should be relocated to help improve the environment. The report which made this recommendation was written by an independent advisory panel who considered submissions and public hearings on the proposal to relocate up to six Marlborough Sounds salmon farms to more sustainable...

Dairy industry law changes ‘inevitable’: Minister

 [19 February/The Country] Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor said that changes to the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act (DIRA) are inevitable based on a review of the dairy industry this year. This comes after the misinformation within the industry that the review he announced recently would be less in depth than a review which had previously been...

Taupo Beef and Lamb starts exporting its meat range to Japanese supermarkets

 [16 February/NZ Farmer] Taupo Beef and Lamb, a company established by farmers Mike and Sharon Barton, has begun exporting its meat range to Japan. They sent their first container load in December which went on sale at five high end supermarkets East of Tokyo. Mr Barton praised his partners for their help with the venture,...

Farmer confidence tumbles in January on regulatory, drought fears

 [15 February/The Country] Due to the drought and uncertainty around new government policies, the latest measure of New Zealand farmer confidence has fallen significantly according to Federated Farmers. Of those surveyed, 34 percent were pessimistic about general economic conditions over the next 12 months according to the Federated Farmers’ Farm Confidence January survey. Federated Farmers...

Lincoln to make radical changes

[19 February/The NZ Farmers Weekly] Lincoln University will undergo significant change to solve the grand challenges of the land based sector based on a report from the University’s Transformation Board. The institution aims to change from a stand-alone traditional university to an enabler of collaborative initiatives involving multiple parties and various academic fields of study....

Federated Farmers trying to raise $50k for PC10 challenge in Rotorua

[20 February/NZ Herald] Federated Farmers want to raise $50,000 to challenge a controversial plan to improve water quality in Lake Rotorua. Their opposition to the plan was labelled as ridiculous by a group working to improve lake water quality. Four appeals have been lodged to the Environment Court against the plan. According to the Federated...

Share reform to cut conflicts

[19 February/The NZ Farmers Weekly] According to an independent report, simplifying the Livestock Improvement Corporation ownership structure into an ordinary share system should guard against potential conflicts in the dual share structure. Currently, some owners have voting power but not the full economic interest in the company whereas other owners have the greater economic interest,...

Morrinsville, Waikato-based tractor and machinery sales company Power Farming Group powers ahead with overseas expansion

[19 February/The Country] Power Farming Group Director, Brett Maber, said that a policy of returning 100 percent profits into the business is what empowered the group to achieve overseas expansion and annual revenue of $400 million. Power Farming Group is an independent tractor and machinery sales company which started in 1948 as Maber Motors. They...

Rural bachelor contest revamped to become battle of sexes

[15 February/NZ Farmer] The Rural Bachelor contest has undergone some changes, and will now be open to both male and female contestants. The contest has been renamed as the Fieldays Rural Catch of the Year. The Fieldays theme this year is the future of farming, so they felt that since females are doing the same...

Protes unveils protein popcorn: ‘We’re the first ones to bring function to the category’

[19 February/Food Navigator USA] Performance Foods, a Brooklyn based food business, claims while the popcorn category has seen a lot of innovation in recent years it has all been driven around flavour rather than function and as a consequence the company is launching a new popcorn product that delivers 10 grams of protein per serving. ...

‘The incline has become steeper’ Nestle’s uphill battle to grow

[16 February/Food Navigator] Nestle has acknowledged that it is facing an uphill battle to deliver organic growth in the face of the changing consumer having reported sales growth for the final quarter of 2017 of 1.4%, well below the consensus forecast at 2.6%.  This is the lowest organic sales growth figure reported in this century...

Irish Farmers’ Association warns of Brexit impact

[15 February/Global Meat News] A report prepared for the Irish Government on the impacts of Brexit on Ireland’s trade and economy paints a very stark picture for food and farming in the country according to the Irish Farmers Association.  The report looks at various trading models that the EU could adopt with Britain moving forward...

Cricket One: If edible insects are to take off, they have to be more affordable

[14 February/Food Navigator USA] Vietnamese start-up Cricket One argues that with the growing demand for alternative protein there is a significant potential market for efficiently farmed, protein packed bugs.  The co-founder, Bicky Nguyen, said that consumers are finding out about new products more quickly than ever and while crickets will never completely replace traditional animal...

Trump budget proposes major overhaul to food stamp programme

[13 February/Food Dive] President Trump’s 2019 Budget proposals would result in fundamental changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programme (SNAP) if enacted.  The proposals see those that currently receive more than USD90 a month in SNAP benefits having some of their current cash benefits being swapped for a USDA food package, including shelf stable milk,...

Farmers Edge partners with global reinsurer to bring farmers custom data-backed insurance products

[13 February/Agfunder News] Farmers Edge have announced a four year deal with Partner Re to bring customised insurance products to users of Farmers Edge’s farm management and agronomy software platforms.  The two companies will work together to develop new agriculture insurance products targeted at farmers in both developed and developing markets.  CEO of Farmers Edge,...

Minister blasts NAIT

[20 February/Rural News] According to Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, National Animal Identification and Tracing (NAIT) clearly hasn’t worked as it should have. He brought this up because of the recent Mycoplasma bovis outbreak which has caused problems across the board. Mr O’Connor said that he doesn’t blame farmers as there is a lack of clear...

Japanese shipment full of ‘stink bugs’ a biosecurity risk

[15 February/The Country] Federated Farmers has called on the Ministry for Primary Industries to hold firm on a shipment which had been previously turned away from the Ports of Auckland. The ship was deemed a biosecurity risk after over 100 brown marmorated stink bugs were found. It was carrying vehicles from Japan and has subsequently...

West Coast Farmers bracing as Gita looms

[19 February/Radio NZ] Farmers are preparing for Tropical Cyclone Gita to hit the West Coast of New Zealand. Within the last month farm buildings, paddocks and roads had all been damaged by heavy rain, king tides and strong winds. The West Coast Regional Council were deciding whether to declare a state of emergency for the...

GM or not GM? Food watchdog reviews new products

[15 February/NZ Herald] Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) were reviewing how rules may apply to products that can be altered genetically, but without any introduced DNA. New breeding techniques (NBTs) are a set of technologies being developed and applied in plant and animal breeding. There was doubt whether the outputs of these technologies...

Lamb and wool marketers confident

[16 February/Rural Life] Many farmers have been asking the Alliance Group how long lamb prices could be sustained at the recent Southern Field Days, a question Chairman, Murray Taggart, has been responding to be by noting that they feel market fundamentals around the world give them some confidence. Mr Taggart said he had also received...

OCD offers fixed milk price

[15 February/Dairy News] Open Country Dairy, New Zealand’s second largest milk company announced that they are offering suppliers a fixed milk price of $6.05/kgMS for the next milking season. OCD’s Chief Executive, Steve Koekemoer, has told suppliers that the reason for this decision is to remove price volatility where possible. Mr Koekemoer added that the...

Vidal Estate winery, restaurant, land in Hastings on the market

[15 February/Stuff] One of New Zealand’s first wineries, Vidal Estate, in the Hawkes Bay has been put up for sale by pioneering winemaker Sir George Fistonich. The Estate was established in 1905 by Anthony Joseph Vidal, who set out to establish a wine empire. The reason for the sale is so the company can move...

Onion breeding station opened in Pukekohe

[19 February/The Country] An Onion Breeding Station worth $2 million was opened in Pukekohe earlier this month. The facility has state-of-the-art sheds, crop covers and irrigation systems. It supports key markets which include Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Brazil. Monsanto Vegetable Seeds Global Breeding Director for Large Seed/Root & Bulb/Brassica crops, Dr Yossi Shapiro,...

Man killed by potato harvester in Pukekohe had been sent from India to study

[19 February/The Country] A farm worker died on Saturday after becoming trapped in a potato harvester in Pukekohe. He was an Indian man who had moved to New Zealand to study. According to the Indian Weekender, some workers were on break and the tractor was turned off, but the machine was still working when the...