Job ad that really worked

Four years ago Ben Haley put a note up on a Timaru supermarket notice board looking for work as hours at his builder’s labourer job wound down. Large scale sharemilker John O’Connell saw the advert on his way to squash one evening and decided to give the then 20-year-old a go. It turned out to be a great decision for …

Dairy apprenticeships ‘ready to go’

An apprenticeship scheme for the dairy sector was “ready to go”, when Federated Farmers Dairy delegates were given a progress report in June. Federated Farmers and the Primary Industry Training Organisation had made the case for funding to the Sector Workforce Engagement Programme. All going well, registrations of interest from dairy farmers are expected to open this month and for …

Dairying for greater good

The vision of Waikato company Trinity Lands is to give profit back to the community. Running a business for a charitable purpose, however, puts even more emphasis on the ability to run at a profit every season. Sheryl Brown got an insight into how the company’s 21 dairy farms deliver on that profit within a volatile milk price.   Trinity Lands …

Autumn calving: Switch needs careful thought

Farmers have more than just the milk price premium offered for winter milk to consider when contemplating autumn-calving, Glenys Christian reports.Dairy farmers thinking of switching to autumn calving just to take advantage of Fonterra’s new winter milk premiums should ask themselves why, DairyNZ North Waikato consulting officer Jamie Haultain says. “There’s got to be another reason to do it like lifestyle …

A system to grow better calves

Anne Lee Suz Wyborn was pretty happy with her calf-rearing system. A busy mum and Canterbury sharemilker milking 850 cows together with husband Joe, she’d refined her system so she could rear more than 200 calves and come out the other end of calving in one piece and sane. So she admits she was pretty sceptical when she was asked …

Smooth deliveries

Anne Hardie A calm, stress-free environment from day one where animals are treated with respect produces a quiet cow that will happily deliver throughout her life and Anthony Lamborn says there are no excuses for anything less. Lamborn manages a 700-cow herd at 650-metre altitude near Nelson’s Lake Rotoiti and is passionate about the animals in his care and that …

Biological control winning slowly

The ragwort flea beetle loves eating ragwort but doesn’t like getting its feet wet. The tiny insect’s huge appetite is saving New Zealand dairy farmers $44 million a year in control costs, a Landcare Research study has shown.

The way to spray

Whether it’s for spot-spraying weeds like ragwort and thistles or spraying out paddocks for cropping or regrassing, a spraying system is an essential piece of equipment on most dairy farms.