Agri-technology

Synthetic foods to have ‘major impact’ within 10 to 15 years – Sir Peter Gluckman

[12 October/ Stuff] The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser, Sir Peter Gluckman, said genetically modified crops presented by synthetic milk and meat is a big threat to New Zealand because of due to the country’s reliance on exports of the real thing. Sir Gluckman said most milk sold globally in 20 to 25 years might...

Sprout innovations company searches for best agricultural startups

[16 October/ Stuff] Agricultural innovations company Sprout is looking New Zealand-wide for up to eight Kiwi agritech start-ups to be accepted into a five-month Sprout Agritech Accelerator programme, giving them access to an over $500,000 pool in grants and investments, as well as mentoring from a team of experts said Sprout Business Strategy Advisor Stu...

Biodegradable miniature sensors a precision solution to agriculture’s variability problem

[17 October/ Stuff] Colorado State University Professor of Precision Agriculture, Raj Khosla says agriculture is embracing precision technology possibilities. Future sensor technology will be small, disposable and will allow farmers collect data to make their businesses more efficient and sustainable. The sensors emitted a small pulse that measured the parameter it was designed for and...

Genetics programme new tool to improve breed

[17 October/New Zealand Herald] Holstein Friesian New Zealand and CRV Ambreed announced their new tool, Holstein Friesian Genetic Leaders Superior Female Programme, to increase the standard of black and white genetics in New Zealand. The programme, launched this October, will find superior registered Holstein Friesian females can produce superior male progeny to be offered to...

Time for farm talk over as agricultural leaders ratchet up market connections

[13 October/ Stuff] New Zealand Primary Industry Executives plan to maximise story-telling opportunities, and heavily endorse New Zealand’s natural assets and charm during the Te Hono Summit at Stanford University in July. Primary Industry Chief Executives have represented the New Zealand companies behind 80 percent of the country’s exports at six summits. New Zealand Merino...

Farm moving into new technology

[12 October/ New Zealand Herald] Waikato Dairy Farmer Grant Coombes said it’s time for farmers to embrace new technology to achieve sustainability. Mr Coombes runs a large-scale operation with 2000 milking cows, plus dairy support and dry stock cattle, over 750 hectares. Mr Coombes, a Dairy New Zealand Board of Directors Candidate, is phasing out...

Future Farm for red meat sector

[9 October/ Rural News Group] Beef and Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) plan to establish a Future Farm to trial new technologies and farm systems. These trials are part of B+LNZ’s strategy to support farming excellence and increase farm productivity and profitability. The farm will be a sheep and beef property with around 6,000 stock units...

Ravensdown maps out its future direction at Timaru AGM

[3 October/ Stuff] Ravensdown Chairman, John Henderson said it was both satisfying and a boost to the organisation’s confidence to record a third successive good result. Mr Henderson added that he cooperative had recorded a $53 million profit and was able to pay its shareholders a rebate of $49.3 million. Ravensdown Chief Executive, Greg Campbell...

New app for farmers

 [21 September/ New Zealand Herald] DairyNZ has developed an app, EnviroWalk, to make it easier for farmers to assess their fertiliser use, effluent, waterways, races, cropping, water utilisation and irrigation, and establish an action plan on their smartphone. About 1500 farmers have downloaded the free app since it was launched in July. DairyNZ North Island...

CIDR technology improves herd’s fertility

[NZ Farmer/ 19 September] Trinity Lands In-house Vet, Richard Tiddy said the business had identified that reproductive performance was a major area of opportunity for the business to lift its performance overall. Last season the farm used controlled Internal Drug Release (CIDR) Cattle Inserts as a tool for improving their herd’s reproductive performance. This coming...

Muir steps down as Tru-Test boss

 [11 September/ National Business Review] Tru-Test Managing Director Greg Muir has resigned after over eight years in the role. Mr Muir said it was time for a refresh for the company as rejuvenation of executive teams is valuable and important in any organisation. The handover to a new Chief Executive would begin this week. Mr...

National’s promises of more money for ag science ‘theft’: Greens

 [11 September/ Stuff] The Green Party have accused National of attempting to gain an advantage on them with a promise to turbo-charge investment in agricultural science and innovation. The Greens announced it would create a $136 million fund to clean farming and support organic production. Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy said National would change the...

Tech-savvy agrifood sector ‘unprepared for major disruption’

[1 September/ National Business Review] A study funded by Microsoft and prepared by Massey Business School researchers examined the impact of cloud computing and the collection of big data. Researchers interviewed food technologists and agrifood industry members and found a gap between how the two groups see the future. Lead researcher Professor Stephen Kelly said...

New Zealand to host international high-tech farming conferences

[22 August/Precision Agriculture Association of New Zealand Press Release] The International Tri-Conference for Precision Agriculture 2017 (PA17) will be held in Hamilton between 16 and 18 October this year. The event which encompasses the inaugural Asian-Australasian Conference on Precision Pastures and Livestock Farming, the 7th Asian-Australasian Conference on Precision Agriculture and the Digital Farmers and...

Tweeting all the way to Cape Reinga

[20 July/ Otago Daily Times] A large gumboot called Welly has been dispatched from Bluff on a journey to Cape Reinga, where it will be reunited with Galosh, its soulmate. However, only Twitter can be used to secure rides to move Welly to its destination. The initiative was created by TracMap- a technology company that...

‘Step-change’ innovator award winner

[18 July/ NZ Herald] Hawke’s Bay-based StockX won the Tru-Test Innovation Award at the Beef + Lamb NZ Sheep Industry Awards. StockX is an online service allowing farmers to trade stock directly with other farmers nationally. StockX has over 2000 registered users across New Zealand after 18 months of trading. The company is assisted by...

Livestock Improvement to lift stake in UK’s National Milk Records to 17.2%

[26 June/ National Business Review] LIC has announced that it plans to increase its holding in UK based National Milk Records (NMR) through a subscription of GBP2.6 million into new equity in the NEX Exchange Growth Market listed company.  NMR is facing a cost of GBP14.8 million to exit the Milk Pension Fund, something the...

Emma Parsons has been named Agrigate CEO

[22 June/ NZ Herald] Emma Parsons has been appointed Chief Executive of Agrigate. Agrigate is a joint venture between Fonterra Farm Source and LIC. The online tool is aimed at helping farmers improve their performance by combining key data that farmers need to make faster and wiser decisions from a single dashboard. Mr Parsons was...

Farm hack – on the cutting edge of rural innovation

[15 June/ NZ Herald] 60 innovators and inventors at 2017’s National Agricultural Fieldays have worked to address a variety of common farming challenges. St Paul’s Collegiate School Agribusiness Student Jock Yarndley promoted a bright flashing LED light designed to be placed under the bonnet of a tractor to prevent tractor fires from birds’ nests. Another...

NZ’s biowaste profits going to waste

[13 June/ Radio NZ Business] The Bioenergy Association says that the current practices of New Zealand’s primary sector mean the country is missing out on a multi-billion dollar waste product industry. The Association says there are opportunities to use biowaste for energy, fertiliser, plastics and other products, activities valued a few years ago at $6...

Vet Ent takes a minority shareholding in FarmIQ Systems

[8 June/ Stuff] Veterinary Enterprises Group has bought a 12.51 percent investment in FarmIQ Systems. The minority shareholding was made after Veterinary Enterprises Group worked with FarmIQ on developing their own software for the group’s GrazCare and StockCare businesses. Group Spokesman Andrew MacPherson said the platforms FarmIQ developed might provide value for the Group’s clients...

Hard nosed attitude needed for science business startups to get off the ground

[26 May/ Stuff] Agri-business start-ups may take eight years before a promising idea progresses to commercial sales. Principal Scientist at AgResearch as well as Chief Technology Officer for Zeakal, Dr Greg Bryan said AgResearch’s idea for growing larger and better crops by elevating photosynthesis might be commercialised. The commercialisation would require a five to six-year...

Award winning software keeps dairy farmers compliant

[31 March/ Stuff] Agrismart, a software system created to improve employment compliance in the dairy industry by automatically recording staff hours and calculating leave entitlements on dairy farms, has won The Active 2.0 national innovation contest. The contest involved over 23 competitors nation-wide pitching technology solutions to help farmers increase sustainability, productivity, profitability, and efficiency....

CropLogic prepares for ASX listing

 [16 March/ Otago Daily Times] CropLogic, a Christchurch-based developer of technology, allows farmers to more accurately control inputs such as fertiliser and water by modelling plant growth by gathering field data and making crop prescriptions and management recommendations. The company has already raised just over $1 million including $512,000 via crowdfunding platform Equitise, plans to...