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TAIHAPE AND WAIMARINO NEXT ON DROUGHT LIST

TAIHAPE AND WAIMARINO NEXT ON DROUGHT LIST

Taihape and Waimarino in the central North Island could be the country’s next drought zones – if they don’t get regular rain soon.

Taihape vet Paul Hughes says the two areas have only had 90 mm of rain this year – much of it through Cyclone Pam last month.

Pasture growth has been less than half the normal rate for this time of year and will slow as temperatures start dropping.

He says the farmers in Taihape and Waimarino are now desperate for rain in the next six to eight weeks, while the soil is still warm enough to grow enough grass for the winter.

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BALLANCE FINED $60,000 FOR ACCIDENTAL FUME DISCHARGE

BALLANCE FINED $60,000 FOR ACCIDENTAL FUME DISCHARGE

Ballance Agri-Nutrients has been fined $60,000 for an accidental discharge of sulphur dioxide from its Mount Maunganui fertilizer plant in May last year

Nine port workers suffered breathing difficulties, watering eyes, sore throats from the discharge and one required medical attention.

Ballance Agri-Nutrients Chief Executive Mark Wynne says the company accepts the fine and shares the community’s concerns regarding environmental safety.

Following the May incident, additional automated safety equipment has been installed at the Mount Maunganui plant and other equipment has been upgraded.

During the May incident, cut-off systems shut the plant just as they were designed to do, but a change has since been made to ensure the system cut off at an even lower limit.

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DEATH A SETBACK IN FORESTRY SAFETY DRIVE

DEATH A SETBACK IN FORESTRY SAFETY DRIVE

WorkSafe NZ has been notified of a forestry-related death at Te Wera in Taranaki.

72 year old James Stuart Oxenham, of Urenui is reported to have been adjusting a strap on a log truck when one of the logs dislodged and rolled on top of him.

Attempts were made to resuscitate him, but he died at scene.

This is the first forestry death reported since January 2014 when a safety drive was initiated to reduce the high level of workplace injuries and deaths in the Forestry sector.

Police and WorkSafe NZ investigations into Mr Oxenham’s death are ongoing.

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QUEENSLAND FRUIT FLY HUNTING TEAM “REFRESHED”

QUEENSLAND FRUIT FLY HUNTING TEAM “REFRESHED”

Biosecurity staff are being flown in from the regions to refresh the team working to halt the Queensland fruit fly incursion discovered in the Auckland suburb of Grey Lynn.

Currently, there are 90 staff involved in trapping and baiting the fruitfly, compared 200 when it was first found. The Central North Island Horizons Regional Council has sent three people to join the control and eradication effort and more help could be on the way. Horizons manager of biosecurity and habitat protection Bill Martyn says "it's the best training possible” as his staff have real-life experience of coping with an incursion.

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WOOL SCOURING MONOPOLY CLEARS FIRST HURDLE

WOOL SCOURING MONOPOLY CLEARS FIRST HURDLE

The Commerce Commission has reached a preliminary view that it should allow Cavalier Wool Holdings to acquire 100 per cent of New Zealand Wool Services International's wool scouring business and assets. Commission chairman Dr Mark Berry says the acquisition would essentially give Cavalier a monopoly on the supply of wool scouring serices and the supply of wool grease – but the Commission is currently satisfied that the rationalisation of the wool scouring industry is likely to lead to lower production and administration costs, the freeing up of industrial sites, and lower ongoing capital expenditure requirements in the future. The Commission is seeking submissions on its Draft Determination by the 21st of April.

 

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DEER NZ PARTNERS WITH KOREA’S GINSENG GIANT

DEER NZ PARTNERS WITH KOREA’S GINSENG GIANT

Deer New Zealand has signed a new partnership agreement with Korea’s largest health food manufacturer, the Korea Ginseng Corporation.

The two organizations have agreed to work together to develop more products containing New Zealand deer velvet.

The Korean company has already developed a children’s tonic to the point where it uses 8 percent of New Zealand’s total velvet production – and it’s just launched a new product combining New Zealand deer velvet with Korean red ginseng extract.

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Country TV Announces Increase In Viewers

As of January 19th 2015, Country TV will be watched by an estimated 130,000 people, equating over 40,000 household subscriptions. This hike in viewers will allow an ever-increasing, comprehensive programming schedule to include more local, relevant content, targeting rural-minded individuals around New Zealand.

Accessed through SKY channel 081, Country TV is New Zealand’s only dedicated rural channel, supplying the nation with agribusiness, farming, equestrian and rural lifestyle television. Increasing viewership means a higher volume of up-to-date information about local and international agriculture, farming, gardening, and more – all brought to the homes of rural-loving Kiwis.

The increase in viewers will give Country TV a better idea of which shows are attracting who, an understanding that will open doors for new programs and partnerships to further accommodate the demands of the market. Country TV aims to communicate directly with rural residents and/or those involved in rural industries to better inform and entertain the communities they support, and long term goals include being a part of every such household in New Zealand.

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