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Kaitiakitanga and Technology Benefiting Farmers, Environment

Kaitiakitanga and Technology Benefiting Farmers, Environment

Wellington, 11 October 2018 - An innovative approach to monitoring farm effluent runoff is reaping financial rewards for farmers with bonuses for farming excellence.

Miraka, a Taupo-based milk processor with more than 100 suppliers, is offering bonuses to farmers who meet the five criteria set out in its Te Ara Miraka Farming Excellence programme - people, the environment, animal welfare, milk quality and prosperity.

NZ agricultural technology company, Regen is helping Miraka farmers manage their effluent more effectively with a smartphone app that sends daily effluent irrigation text recommendations, as well as logs data to prove compliance - meeting the Te Taiao criteria, caring for the environment.

Miraka suppliers received at least $3 million in bonuses in the 2016/2017 season for meeting the five key criteria.

Bridgit Hawkins, Regen CEO says their work with Miraka’s farmers is bringing a new level of transparency to farming practice, an issue that’s even more important given the Government’s new five-year water improvement plan, released earlier this week.

“With Miraka’s focus on kaitiakitanga, they’re encouraging incremental gains across their farming community - something we fully support. Effluent is an issue farmers deal with day in and day out, managing it well is key to sustainable farming, because it reduces nitrate leaching and the impact on our waterways - an issue the Government has highlighted in its plans to improve water quality”.

Grant Jackson, Miraka General Manager of Milk Supply, says the goal of Te Ara Miraka is to minimise the impact on whenua and protect resources for future generations.

“Our farmers now have a better appreciation of the value and impact of their dairy effluent. Using Regen’s technology, they’ve taken the complication and compliance out of day to day farm management. Now, our farmers are proactive and know what they need to do and when”.

Bridgit Hawkins says ultimately sustainable farming, and milk production is about more than just effluent management.

“It’s important the industry continues to innovate and extend its products and services to support our farmers in meeting the challenge of sustainable farming. Doing the right thing can be hard, but Te Ara Miraka makes it clear what the right thing is, and how to achieve it, benefiting farmers and the environment”.

Miraka is holding Miraka Focus Days today and tomorrow in Taupo and Tokoroa for its suppliers. Regen is presenting to farmers on best practice Effluent Management Systems.


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