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In the News



PROFESSOR KEITH WOODFORD. Independent consultant. Scratching below the surface, it is evident Fonterra is rapidly building strength in foodservice but making slow progress in consumer products.

RICHARD WAKELIN. Beef+Lamb NZ GM for innovation. It’s the sort of farm where new-to-market, leading edge technologies will be put into practice.

AL MCCONE. WorkSafe agriculture sector lead. We think there [are] 20% who are just turning their back on the whole thing going, ‘we are not interested.’



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Agriculture is NZ’s most dynamic, fast-changing sector where the ability to keep up with and anticipate trends is essential to the future profitability of your business. The Main Report Farming Alert is the most convenient and concise means to keep up-to-date with what is happening in your sector.

Each week The Main Report Farming Alert prepares you to take hold of new opportunities ahead with farming solutions, trends, ideas, forecasts and analysis – to improve prospects for your farming success.

Whether it is the current market trends, helpful tips on pasture or stock management, the latest developments in agriculture science or regulatory changes, you will find it all in the The Main Report Farming Alert.

Receive helpful advice and ideas on: Government thinking and legislation farm management cost controls productivity hiring and firing quality control farm equipment financial planning forecasts and trends meat export schedule livestock markets agricultural research & development diversification pasture management

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TOP 10 ISSUES FOR AGRICULTURE:

Election 2017: A change of Government may not be what farmers and those involved in the primary production sector want to see, but John Key’s resignation as leader makes this election potentially the closest for years.

The Dairy Industry: Dairy prices are still very volatile, despite the rise in payout forecast for the year. Fonterra has done much to improve the way the industry operates, but placing so much of the nation’s future in the hands of one enterprise is seen as a risk.

Water Quality: Fonterra has been leading the way in getting farmers to improve water quality and fence waterways to stop stock from polluting them, But nitrate leaching into water is still a huge concern. Who will win the battle between farming needs and environmental damage?

Water Storage: Drought in recent years, with expectations of more to come in future has brought new focus on to the need to boost the nation’s water storage capacity. Will concerns about the environmental impact of large irrigation schemes handicap the development of future irrigation schemes?

Climate Change: The likelihood of more extreme weather events such as droughts and heavy rains will be the result of long-term climate change. Farmers, especially those on dry land and hill country properties, will have to change their farming practices to better retain the rain they receive and plant more trees. How quickly will change come?

Meat Industry: Farmers are starting to tell the meat companies change has to occur to save the industry. So far there’s been precious little action.

Wool: The wool industry is facing similar challenges to the meat industry – unstable prices from year to year and fickle customers. Can the industry break this boom and bust cycle and what strategies will they employ? Will technology be the key?

Global Market Access: The Government is looking to seal as many free trade agreements as possible with a view to helping exporters especially the farming sector, but the actual benefits in terms of boosting farmer profitability are yet to be realised. The TPP is effectively dead, and the age of Trump may create a more protectionist environment, which will be bad for NZ.

Research Investment: Science and research will boost productivity and returns. But will farmers be the real beneficiaries?

Regulatory Reform: The Government is continuing its programme to change the Resource Management Act in part to help make life easier for farmers. It has been a long and tortuous process, and legislation still has a way to go to get to a point where it will make a difference.


The Main Report Farming Alert is written and edited by The Main Report and Trans Tasman Editors. Advertising is not accepted. Editors have no allegiance to any political party or other outside lobby. Their duty is solely to you, our client.


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IN THIS WEEK'S ISSUE

16 October 2017

  • This Week... Canterbury-based milk processor Synlait, regarded by investors as a struggling business when it listed on the NZX in July 2013, has proved itself. Its shares have climbed by $3.50 or 110% in the past year and the share price broke through the $7 mark last week.
  • Dairy expert Keith Woodford has some questions about the success of Fonterra's value-add businesses. He says it is evident Fonterra is rapidly building strength in foodservice but making slow progress in consumer products.
  • Beef+Lamb NZ is looking for a farmer to work with it to showcase best practice and explore technologies. It is the first time such a project has been mooted for a sheep and beef property.
  • And Fonterra's bid for Aust’s embattled Murray Goulburn co-op succeeds, the NZ giant could become the major player in the Aust dairying industry. Fonterra Aust reported a $62m profit before interest and taxes for 2016-17 and said its assets were generating an 11% return on investment.

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