Farm­ers have for­ti­tude to get through this


Matamata Chronicle - - Rural Delivery - By STEW WADEY

With all our pri­mary pro­ducer farm­ers well into win­ter man­age­ment on their re­spec­tive prop­er­ties, there is def­i­nitely no unan­i­mous doom and gloom mind­set, from my ob­ser­va­tions to date.

That is backed up by the many media re­ports from the Na­tional Fiel­d­ays four day event. Sure, an­tic­i­pated be­lowop­ti­mum farm gate re­turns are a se­ri­ous con­cern, but farm­ers in gen­eral do por­tray con­sid­ered phys­i­o­log­i­cal for­ti­tude to farm through this ac­tual busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion chal­lenge.

What won’t change is the world­wide ad­mi­ra­tion of New Zealand live­stock farm­ers, who col­lec­tively calve and lamb lit­er­ally mil­lions of stock in just over 15 weeks to pro­duce a top-qual­ity food.

It is that very as­pect that will keep ru­ral len­der trad­ing banks work­ing hard to sup­port their farmer cus­tomers. They know very well the rev­enue flow that gen­er­ates through­out New Zealand even when the world mar­ket for prod­uct ap­pears ‘‘flat’’.

It was public knowl­edge the lengthy de­bate on selling raw milk to the public. I have just re­ceived ad­vice from the of­fice of Jo Good­hew, Min­is­ter for Food Safety. That af­ter ex­ten­sive con­sul­ta­tion and re­view, the Gov­ern­ment will al­low farm­ers to con­tinue to sell raw milk di­rectly to the public from the farm and via home de­liv­er­ies.

The Cab­i­net pa­per, Reg­u­la­tory Im­pact State­ment, the sum­mary of sub­mis­sions, and the re­port Re­view of Ev­i­dence for Health Ben­e­fits of Raw Milk Con­sump­tion from the Of­fice of the Prime Min­is­ter’s Chief Science Ad­viser is avail­able on the MPI web­site.

As you would ex­pect, there is a fair but rig­or­ous health and safety re­quire­ment on such di­rect selling by dairy farm­ers.

I do have the priv­i­lege to mix and min­gle by in­vi­ta­tion, to func­tions that are at­tended by se­nior ex­ec­u­tive of dif­fer­ent en­ti­ties as­so­ci­ated with our pri­mary in­dus­try ex­port busi­ness. I sug­gest it would be good if a grad­u­ate stu­dent could be com­mis­sioned by a phi­lan­thropist to pro­duce a the­sis on how many times ‘‘the ticket is clicked’’ from farm gate to plate.

Plus a se­nior banker was ex­pect­ing the OCR to drop 50 ba­sis points, not 25 as it was.

Ba­si­cally the ra­tio­nale for that com­ment was the huge amount of off­shore cash de­posits ex­ploit­ing our in­ter­est rate, com­pared with coun­try of ori­gin of that cash. So re­ally the Gov­ern­ment and the Re­serve Bank have to re­ally work hard on man­ag­ing our eco­nomic di­rec­tion, es­pe­cially over the next 36 months I be­lieve.

- Stew Wadey is chair of the Mata­mata Dis­trict Fed­er­ated Farm­ers

Stew Wadey

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