Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Deer profit initiative wins government support

20 June 2014

Deer profit initiative wins government support

The government is supporting a major initiative to increase deer farm profitability.

The Sustainable Farming Fund (SFF) is contributing up to $225,000 over the next three years to Advance Parties, a half million dollar project designed to lift deer farming profits. The balance of funding comes from Deer Industry New Zealand (DINZ).

DINZ chief executive officer Dan Coup said he was grateful for the support provided by the fund, which has appreciated the novelty and the merit of the Advance Parties concept.

“We see that as a strong endorsement for our overall deer farming profitability strategy – Passion2Profit.”

Six Advance Parties have already been formed, each involving six to eight farmers, who are trialling the concept. Each farmer identifies on-farm issues that are limiting profitability and works with other farmers to come up with solutions.

“Before getting involved, farmers agree to adopt management changes, record the outcome of those changes and to share the results with the wider deer farming community. DINZ provides an independent facilitator for each party, technical back-up and crunches the on-farm data,” says Mr Coup.

In its funding application DINZ says that with improved genetics, feeding and animal health the industry could double its export sales in seven years, with little increase in inputs.

This is highlighted by Statistics NZ figures that show an average fawn survival to sale percentage of 74 per cent, a figure that has remained constant for 20 years.

“It is up to the farmers in each party to decide what issues they want to focus on. But if it was increasing fawn survival to 85 per cent, that alone would increase net farm income per hind by $40. Or $16,000 a year in a typical 400-hind herd,” says Mr Coup.

He says deer farming is a unique industry with a proud history of innovation, from the capture and domestication of wild deer through to breeding for improved antler and venison genetics.

“Leading deer farmers have revamped the farming systems developed by the pioneers and are achieving fawn survival percentages in the mid-90s and venison yields 25 per cent higher than their peers.

“They have shown that the potential for greatly improved deer farm profitability is out there. Advance Parties are an innovative way for mainstream deer farmers to tap into that potential.“

Mr Coup says the design of Advance Parties reflects the fact that deer farmers prefer to learn from each other.

“This is about farmers helping farmers. It’s not just a new name for a discussion group or monitor farm programme. Participants commit to sharing production information and to making changes in their farming systems. Also the decisions on what changes are needed on each of the farms are made by the farmers themselves, not by a panel of outside experts.”

The Advance Party concept will be refined, based on the experience of the 2014 trial, and will be fully launched in 2015.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


DIY: Kiwi Ingenuity And Masking Tape Saves Chick

Kiwi ingenuity and masking tape has saved a Kiwi chick after its egg was badly damaged endangering the chick's life. The egg was delivered to Kiwi Encounter at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua 14 days ago by a DOC worker with a large hole in its shell and against all odds has just successfully hatched. More>>


Trade: Key To Lead Mission To India; ASEAN FTA Review Announced

Prime Minister John Key will lead a trade delegation to India next week, saying the pursuit of a free trade agreement with the protectionist giant is "the primary reason we're going" but playing down the likelihood of early progress. More>>



MYOB: Digital Signatures Go Live

From today, Inland Revenue will begin accepting “digital signatures”, saving businesses and their accountants a huge amount of administration time and further reducing the need for pen and paper in the workplace. More>>

Oil Searches: Norway's Statoil Quits Reinga Basin

Statoil, the Norwegian state-owned oil company, has given up oil and gas exploration in Northland's Reinga Basin, saying the probably of a find was 'too low'. More>>


Modern Living: Auckland Development Blowouts Reminiscent Of Run Up To GFC

The collapse of property developments in Auckland is "almost groundhog day" to the run-up of the global financial crisis in 2007/2008 as banks refuse to fund projects due to blowouts in construction and labour costs, says John Kensington, the author of KPMG's Financial Institutions Performance Survey. More>>


Health: New Zealand's First ‘No Sugary Drinks’ Logo Unveiled

New Zealand’s first “no sugary drinks logo” has been unveiled at an event in Wellington... It will empower communities around New Zealand to lift their health and wellbeing and send a clear message about the damage caused by too much sugar in our diets. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news