A report on the modelling work done over four years on a range of dairy and sheep and beef farms
This report examines diversification options that involve both the development of part of an existing property or an option which involves the wholesale conversion to an alternative land use. The purpose is to provide a number of examples of what might be possible in terms of land use diversification and some of the considerations that should be made by a land owner prior to making a change.
AgFirst have undertaken a literature review and analysis of Farmer decision making with regard to Climate Change and Biological Gas Emissions. The report has been prepared for the Biological Emissions Reference Group (BERG).
Article by Bob Cathcart of AgFirst Northland dated April 2017 on 'Observations on effects of Forestry on marginal land inland of Kawakawa'.
Article by Bob Cathcart of AgFirst Northland dated October 2017 on 'The Effects of Exotic Forests on Soil, Ground Water, Water Quality, Air Quality and Native Flora and Fauna'
There are compelling reasons for dairy farmers to increase the supply of beef calves from dairy cows, says a farm consultant.
Dairy farmers would welcome the additional beef income and the calves were easier to sell, but First farm consultant Bob Thomson is warning farmers against using just any beef bull.
He said a dairy-beef calf might not be required as a heifer replacement in the dairy herd and was therefore surplus to requirements, but farmers stood to earn a lot more if they used proven beef genetics.
A new dairy beef programme has been launched by farm consultancy group AgFirst and Hamilton-based meat processor Greenlea to help promote better use of beef genetics among dairy farmers.
Beef genetics are an increasingly popular option for dairy farmers because resulting calves from mated dairy cows are fetching good values at four-day-old calf sales around the country.
The programme requires farmers to commit to a minimum of 100 straws of either Hereford, Angus or Simmental genetics that are to be mated with mature cows. Dairy farmers in the pilot scheme would receive free beef semen for insemination.
Dave Miller seems to think so, and his opinion is based on research into the industry which AgFirst carried out over the last season. This discovered the number of Herd Owning Sharemilking arrangements was dropping, and more Variable Order Sharemilkers were turning to Contract Milking arrangements. The reason appears to be because of milk price volatility.
The challenge to create a better value proposition for rearing dairy-beef calves is compelling and one the dairy and beef industries are acutely aware of.