FROM THE RIDGE: Some things are worth the wait

Like many of us in the rural community, I’ve been involved in many voluntary roles over the years.

One I’m enjoying presently is chairing the East Coast Ballance Farm Environment Awards.

The East Coast is one of 11 regions that make up these awards.

ALTERNATIVE VIEW: A victory for common sense

My views on the original wintering rules are well known. Basically, the original system, the Essential Freshwater Rules on winter grazing, were unworkable and promulgated by a bureaucracy without any knowledge of rural issues.

BLOG: Sustainability’s a balancing act

Judging by the numbers turning up to on-farm field days recently, farmers are increasingly interested in how trees can provide an option for them both in terms of income and sustainability.

PULPIT: Regen ag not the be-all, end-all

Regenerative agriculture, where the health and wellbeing of the environment, animals and farmers is prioritised, is gaining cachet. I see that as a necessary but insufficient change to how we manage land and watery environments. In some respects, discussions about regen ag are more backward than forward-looking.

THE BRAIDED TRAIL: Pick battles that will win the war

A key forthcoming decision for New Zealand is how it will report to the United Nations on its Paris Agreement milestones. On the surface, this many seem something for the bureaucracy to deal with, but the reality is very different. It is an issue of fundamental importance.

BLOG: Sector representation is sorely lacking

New Zealand farmers have traditionally not done protests well.

They tend to be a lot more civilised than their European contemporaries who willingly use tractors to blockade motorways and cripple cities.

FROM THE RIDGE: Win or lose, at least try it

I write this on the evening we are all basking in the reflected glory of Kiwis once again batting outside their league and winning the America’s Cup. Not that the great majority of us had anything to do with it other than involuntarily having contributed some tax money to the project, it reminded me of my own inglorious sailing career.

PULPIT: Non-bank lending on the rise

Lending from non-bank sources is on the comeback trail.

The sector includes credit unions, non-bank deposit takers, building societies and finance companies.

Break the cycle of transmission

As we struggle to fathom how we ended up in the throes of the covid-19 pandemic, we’re reminded of the importance of vaccinations to protect us from life-threatening diseases. The same applies to animals – to preserve their health and wellbeing as well as ours – due to the spread of disease between animals and humans.