Five-point wish list a reality – 10 years on

Ten years ago, while looking for a new challenge, Catriona and Mark White compiled a five-point list to guide them on a quest to create an improved lifestyle for their young family. “We didn’t know where we wanted to live in New Zealand,...... Read More

New clover pest now widespread in NZ

A red clover pest first formally identified in New Zealand just 16 months ago has now been found right across the country. FAR seed research manager Richard Chynoweth says the red clover case bearer moth (Coleophora deauratella) was discovered in Auckland...... Read More

Record temperatures challenge livestock and farmers

With New Zealand experiencing record-breaking heatwaves this summer, AgResearch scientists say farmed animals can be susceptible and the pressure is on farmers to manage it. The extreme temperatures across the country include the hottest recorded temperature...... Read More

FAR appoints new CEO

Internationally-recognised scientist with specialist knowledge in the area of plant protection, Dr Alison Stewart has been appointed the new CEO of the Foundation for Arable Research. FAR board chair David Birkett says Dr Stewart, who is currently general...... Read More

Fascinating facts about avocado fruit set

Fruit set is the process in which flowers become fruit. The seed develops and the surrounding tissue grows to form a berry. Yes, as strange as it may seem, the avocado fruit is botanically classified as a berry. Fruit set is a stressful time for...... Read More

Little focus on how nature manages things

I was recently invited to attend the Wai-Bop Soils Conference at Waikato University. It was an opportunity to check on the tone and scope of soil science research in 2017. I also got to see award presentations, and the chance to hear from some of the...... Read More

Benefits of copper spraying

Examining the orchard practices of Australia’s biggest avocado growers has highlighted the benefits of spraying copper to optimise fruit quality. In New Zealand, Avoco grower leaders are encouraging their peers to adopt similar practices to ensure...... Read More

Tasmanian blackwood yields high quality timber

“Trees are a much better financial deal than sheep and beef.” Quite a statement, but words that Otorohanga farm forester Malcolm Mackenzie can back it up with his experience of ‘farming’ trees. Malcolm and Alison Mackenzie have...... Read More

No time for biosecurity complacency

The kiwifruit industry’s recovery from the vine disease Psa-V is impressive but there’s no time to be complacent, say Barry O’Neil, CEO of Kiwifruit Vine Health. “There are four other virulent strains of Psa-V in Korea and Japan...... Read More

Weeds for bees part of pollination plan

Two thousand wrecked cars, countless household appliances and other debris were among the challenges facing Wilson and Barbara McGillvray when they bought an avocado orchard near Katikati in 2011. Previous owners had collected cars and much of the property...... Read More

Late night beekeeping still a buzz for brothers

The excitement of going out into the night with their dad to move bee hives never wore off for Corban and River Hayes. When the brothers grew up, they wanted to be keepers too, and today River, 21, has been working for the family business, Buzz Apiaries...... Read More

Detention dams – simple but so effective

For the past eight years, Carol and David Hodge have been quietly carrying out work to protect and enhance waterways on their Pikowai dry stock farm. Largely hidden from public view, the extensive plantings, fencing and formation of ponds and detention...... Read More

Owners, manager not deterred by adversity

Seeing opportunity where others see adversity is something Gavin Dyer and David Timms have in common; as is the courage to act on their convictions. Gavin and wife Linda, with brother Stephen and wife Lynette, own Gold Nugget Orchard at Pukehina, which...... Read More

Quest for change of pace a ‘work in progress’

When Kerry and Gaye Barnes sold their Reporoa dairy farm in June 2017, it was with the intention of finding a change of lifestyle and working shorter hours in less physically demanding situations. To date they haven’t achieved that, but they have...... Read More

Safety on orchards aim of driving courses

Courses aimed at improving the safe operation of side-by-side vehicles in kiwifruit orchards will be held on a Katikati orchard over six days in February. Jacks Machinery, Polaris agents of Whakatane, has engaged Andrew Simpson of Carnz Training Ltd...... Read More

Challenges drivers for sustainability change

The finalists in this year’s Bay of Plenty Ballance Farm Environment Awards each have a different and compelling reason for the approach they have taken to their farming or orcharding business, says awards judging co-ordinator Margaret Wright. “Each...... Read More

Entering awards opens many doors

The benefits of entering the dairy industry awards go far beyond the great prizes to be won, says Karla Shaw, who with husband Ross is regional manager for the 2018 Central Plateau Dairy Industry Awards. “When we entered, Ross I found that by far...... Read More

Judging underway in BOP awards

An intense round of judging is under way this month for the 34 farmers who have entered the 2018 Bay of Plenty Dairy Industry Awards to select the finalists in the prestigious contest. Regional manager for the awards, Jodi Mexted, says the number and...... Read More

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