Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Two-day soil management workshop


Thursday 13th April

A two-day soil management workshop taking place in Cromwell at the end of June will be the biggest event of its type in the South Island in recent times.

Co-organiser Cherryle Prew of the SoilFoodWeb Institute said it was a coup for the South Island to secure key note speaker Dr Christine Jones, an internationally renowned soils ecologist and founder of the Australian Soil Carbon Accreditation Scheme.

“Dr Jones is booked years in advance, so having her speak for a whole morning at the ”Farming Soils – Starting Today” workshop is a real honour,” she said.

“She will be talking about the big picture; how the carbon, nitrogen and water cycles are intrinsically linked.  I think farmers will respect her years of experience working with landholders to restore water balance, increase biological activity and improve productivity”.

Ms Prew said all the speakers at the two-day conference are well versed in sustainable farming, including farmers who had made the switch to innovative soil-based production.

“The aim of the workshop is to empower the farmer with enough knowledge to make the best decision to suit his own farming system. Integrity Soils will be giving a farmer-friendly, in-depth explanation of the simple on-farm score-card system for assessing soils. Landcare Research will be talking about greenhouse gas emissions and soil carbon issues.”

Ms Prew said the workshop will give participants all the information they need to start farming their own soils.

“It really is a one-off opportunity for South Island farmers to access a high level of expertise in biological farming which is not often brought together, especially in the far south.”

Co-organiser Ray Annan, from Sustainable Growing Solutions, said he had been working with different farming industries for seven years in Otago and Southland.

“I’ve seen outstanding results in my work with dairy farmers, beef and sheep farmers and vineyards. Once you get the soil working for you, everything else starts falling into place. Stock temperament and health improves, fertiliser use is enhanced, and soil structure and depth is improved. The water holding capacity of the soil is also increased, reducing water run-off and taking the pressure off rivers and streams.”

Mr Annan said anyone who relies on the soil would find the workshop relevant including dairy farmers, sheep and beef farmers, crop farmers, orchardists, vegetable growers and wine-makers.

The third leg of the organising team is Conal Wattam, the Otago Compost and Greenwaste manager for Delta. He was inspired to put time into organising the conference because of his passion for biologically active soils through composting.

“Biological farming is the way of the future,” said Mr Wattam. “By farming the biology in their soil, farmers can reduce input costs and maximise productivity.

“There’s no downside, and the earlier farmers get into it, the more of a competitive advantage they’re going to get from it.”

Mr Annan encouraged farmers who are interested in attending the workshop not to leave it too late to register.

“We haven’t even started advertising the workshop yet, and already we’re getting calls from all over the South Island. Word of mouth is spreading extremely quickly, and farmers are thirsty for knowledge about biological farming. I’d hate to see people miss out.”

The “Farming Soils – Starting Today” workshop runs 30th June – 1st July in Cromwell, and costs $180.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Must Sell 20 Petrol Stations: Z Cleared To Buy Caltex Assets

Z Energy is allowed to buy the Caltex and Challenge! petrol station chains but must sell 19 of its retail sites and one truck-stop, the Commerce Commission has ruled in a split decision that acknowledges possible retail price coordination between fuel retailers occurs in some regions. More>>

ALSO:

Huntly: Genesis Extends Life Of Coal-Fuelled Power Station To 2022

Genesis Energy will keep its two coal and gas-fired units at Huntly Power Station operating until 2022, having previously said they'd be closed by 2018, after wringing a high price from other electricity generators who wanted to keep them as back-up. More>>

ALSO:

Dammed If You Do: Ruataniwha Irrigation Scheme Hits Farmer Uptake Targets

Enough Hawke's Bay farmers have signed up for water from the proposed Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme for it to go ahead as long as a cornerstone institutional capital investor can be found to back it, its regional council promoter announced. More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: OCR Stays At 2.25%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2.25 percent, in a decision traders had said could go either way, while predicting inflation will pick up as the slump in oil prices washes out of the data and capacity pressures start to build in the economy. More>>

ALSO:

Export Values Down: NZ Posts Biggest Annual Trade Deficit In 7 Years

New Zealand has recorded its biggest annual trade deficit since April 2009, reflecting weaker prices of agricultural commodities such as dairy products, beef and lamb, and increased imports of vehicles and machinery. More>>

ALSO:

Currency Events: NZ's New $5 Note Wins International Banknote Award

New Zealand’s new Brighter Money $5 note has been named Banknote of the Year in a prestigious international competition. The $5 note was awarded the IBNS Banknote of the Year title at the International Bank Note Society’s annual meeting. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news