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Partnerships aims to increase productivity

Media Release
For immediate release: 21 November, 2003

Partnerships aims to increase productivity

Meridian Energy is investigating how to increase productivity and decrease power consumption on dairy farms.

Meridian Energy staff and its farm consultant met with share-milkers operating on its farms and local farmers in the Waitaki Valley earlier this week, to share information and discuss how to make the farms more efficient, profitable and productive. The latest technology was used to provide the share-milkers with a computer simulation of their farm, so they could see how they have evolved.

“The computer model really helps us to quantify where the profitability and opportunities are. We can easily see where the farms are making money and from that, we can see what is the most efficient use of resources for each individual,” says Farm Consultant Jeremy Savage, Macfarlane Rural Business.

Meanwhile in Wellington, Meridian Energy staff are investigating new technologies that could shave up to 30% off dairy-shed power consumption.

“We’re working with two external companies on new technologies that have been developed to reduce dairy-shed power consumption. These products have the ability to reduce consumption by up to 30%,” says Meridian Energy Rural and Business Segment Manager Nigel Broomhall.

New Zealanders are demanding about 2% more power each year and one of the major factors driving the growth is the intensification of agriculture, including the increasing number of dairy farms and irrigation.

“The industry growth in the South Island is very energy intensive due to high irrigation requirements, and that’s putting a lot of pressure on electricity supply. If Meridian Energy can work with both farmers and businesses to reduce that demand growth, we will not only make farms more profitable but we will reduce the pressure on New Zealand’s electricity supply,” says Nigel Broomhall.

ENDS

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