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

 


Farmers Have Plenty to Gain From Farm Environment Awards

Farmers Have Plenty to Gain From Taranaki Ballance Farm Environment Awards

Tariki farmers Robin and Jacqueline Blackwell are glad they got the opportunity to enter the inaugural Taranaki Ballance Farm Environment Awards.

The Blackwells, who run a sheep, beef and dairy grazing operation on 658ha north east of Stratford, had followed the farming competition with interest in previous years.

“We were very pleased when we heard the Awards were coming here,” says Robin.

“It was a great pleasure to enter the inaugural Taranaki competition, and we found it a very rewarding experience.”

The Blackwells were “over the moon” to win four category awards - the Beef+Lamb New Zealand Livestock Award, Hill Laboratories Harvest Award, Taranaki Regional Council Sustainability Award and the Donaghys Farm Stewardship Award.

Ballance Farm Environment Award (BFEA) judges praised their positive approach to farming, their infectious enthusiasm and their wide awareness of all areas affecting their farming operation.

The Donaghys Farm Stewardship Award recognises farmers who have created special places on the farm by protecting or enhancing areas such as wetlands, landscape features or historic places. Farmers must also demonstrate management systems that improve productivity and sustainability.

The Blackwells began fencing and planting riparian areas and erosion-prone slopes in the mid-1990s. In the past five years they have also protected two peat swamp areas. Totalling 1.5ha each, these areas have been covenanted to QEII National Trust.

BFEA judges were impressed with their commitment to the environment and their efforts to encourage biodiversity.

Robin says the BFEA endorsement of their farming operation was very welcome, and he and Jacqueline have since been farming with a renewed vigour that comes with “knowing you are on the right track”.

The Blackwells enjoyed the judging process and were impressed with the calibre of the judges.

“We really valued their post-competition feedback. They looked at our strengths and weaknesses and gave us advice on how we could improve.”

One of their immediate priorities is to covenant more native bush.

“That’s something we would have done eventually, but our involvement with the Awards has encouraged us to crack into it much sooner.”

Robin says he and Jacqueline enjoyed mingling with other entrants on awards night.

“It was a wonderfully run event and the atmosphere was excellent.”

The Blackwells want to encourage other farmers to enter the 2015 Taranaki Ballance Farm Environment Awards because it is such a positive and rewarding event to be involved with.

“It’s easy to become tunnel-visioned when you are so heavily focused on the day to day running of the farm. But this competition makes you take an in-depth look at your business and think about where you want to take it in future.”

Entries for the 2015 Taranaki Ballance Farm Environment Awards close on October 17, 2014.

Entering the competition is easy and entry forms are available online at www.bfea.org.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Budget Policy Statement: Spending Wins Over Tax Cuts; Big Ticket Items Get Boost

Income tax cuts are on hold as the government says “responding to the earthquakes and reducing debt are currently of higher priority”, although election year tax sweeteners remain possible. More>>

ALSO:

Fishy: Is Whitebaiting Sustainable?

The whitebait fry - considered a delicacy by many - are the juveniles of five species of galaxiid, four of which are considered threatened or declining. The SMC asked freshwater experts for their views on the sustainability of the whitebait fishery and whether we're doing enough to monitor the five species of galaxiid that make up whitebait. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: Smaller-Than-Expected Four-Month Deficit

The New Zealand government's accounts recorded a smaller-than-forecast deficit in the first four months of the fiscal year on a higher-than-expected inflow of corporate and goods and services tax. More>>

ALSO:

On For Christmas: KiwiRail Ferries Back In Full Operation After Quake

KiwiRail’s Interislander ferries are back in full operation for the first time since the Kaikoura earthquake, with the railspan that allows rail wagons to be loaded on the Aratere now restored. More>>

ALSO:

Comerce Commission Investigation: Prosecutions Over Steel Mesh Labelling

Steel & Tube Holdings, along with two other companies, will be prosecuted by the Commerce Commission following the regulator's investigation into seismic steel mesh, while Fletcher Building's steel division has been given a warning. More>>

ALSO:

Wine: 20% Of Marlborough Storage Tanks Damaged By Quake

An estimated 20 percent of wine storage tanks in the Marlborough region, the country’s largest wine producing area, have been damaged by the impact of the recent Kaikoura earthquake. More>>

ALSO:

ACC: Levy Recommendations For 2017 – 2019 Period

• For car owners, a 13% reduction in the average Motor Vehicle levy • For businesses, a 10% reduction in the average Work levy, and changes to workplace safety incentive products • For employees, due to an increase in claims volumes and costs, a 3% increase in the Earners’ levy. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news