BLOG: Our future is in diversity

Moving day is over but this week farmers from across the country will make that other pilgrimage – up or down State Highway 1 to Hamilton then that long morning trudge through the fields and fog to Mystery Creek for National Fieldays.

BLOG: Budget’s rural help welcome

Budget 2019 was named the Wellbeing Budget and it was reassuring to see the health of rural communities addressed.

Farmers have known for some time they will shoulder much of the burden of reaching emissions targets and improving the environment.

BLOG: Govt must listen to rural people

Government policies have tilted the balance in favour of forestry over livestock. Subsidies encouraging afforestation, changes to investment laws favouring foreign-owned forestry companies and allowing emitters of carbon but not methane to offset their emissions could see livestock displaced by 2.5 million hectares of trees.

BLOG: Farmers are right to ask questions

Last week Regional Development Minister Shane Jones called farmers a bunch of moaners for voicing concerns about the billion trees policy and the Zero Carbon Bill.

BLOG: Women play vital roles in farming

On Farm Story star Trish Rankin was named Dairy Woman of the Year last week.

The amount of work the South Taranaki farmer manages to fit into a week puts a lot of us to shame and the accolade is well-deserved. As well as farming with husband Glenn, Trish also teaches part time in Opunake and has various other industry and governance roles.

BLOG: Doing more with our milk

In the never-ending debate about Fonterra’s follies and future, adding value is the constant theme.

The co-operative claims it now adds value (over the prices of standard dairy commodities) to 45% of external sales by volume, thus earning more than half of total revenue from such goods.

BLOG: Rapid change coming soon

The first seeds of what is likely to be a year of fundamental change for agriculture were sown with the revelation the wind has gone out of the market for dairy farms in two key South Island dairy regions.

BLOG: No sense please, we’re British

I say chaps, those Brits have pulled a blinder, the cunning rascals.

They’ve got those Europeans exactly were they want them. Confused.

BLOG: More money can speed up change

There was good news for dairy farmers last week with Fonterra raising its forecast milk price range by 30c to $6.30-6.60 for the season.

It appears production will be back a bit on forecasts though still ahead of last year. The dry that’s set into a few regions probably has something to do with that – I know farmers here are down to once-a-day.