Home' Otago Southland Farmer : November 2nd 2012 Contents 2.11.12 Farmer
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If we don't take on new technology and push the boundaries, we will be left
That's the rationale behind Canterbury farmers Tim & Sue Anderson's decision to be
involved with SNP chip trials.
Mr Anderson, currently president of the NZ Perendale Society, runs a Perendale stud
at over 900 hectares of hill country in north Canterbury.
Mr Anderson is one of a growing number of sheep breeders DNA sire testing as part
of the 50K sheep project. Scientists use the so-called SNP technology to search for
multiple traits across thousands of DNA markers at once. Links are produced between
DNA information and accurate recorded data (SIL breeding values), enabling the
breeding value of young animals to be predicted just by looking at their DNA makeup.
"The ram business is tight, and getting harder for the smaller studs, so it's get involved
in ways that progress us, or get left behind. Doing this gives us more accuracy and
speeds up the genetic gain we can make in our stud."
"We're constantly looking for options and opportunities. Science is providing us with
a way of measuring traits like muscling objectively; initially by scanning, and now
progressing to DNA technology. It allows breeders like us to make great advances."
Alongside the meat studies, Mr Anderson is also taking part in footrot and facial
eczema trials and is hoping DNA technology will eventually provide genetic answers
to improving these animal health issues. More recently, he's become involved in the
CARLA saliva test for internal parasites, as well as using WormStar to improve parasite
resistance in his rams for his client farmers.
This technology is a result of New Zealand farmer investment in Beef + Lamb New
Grassroots initiative Protest witnesses wanted
Waitaki Valley woman June Slee wants your help.
She is looking to interview people for her new book, Bloody Friday
Revisited: The Southland farmer's 1978 protest thirty-five years on.
Her first book, Bloody Friday: An account of the Southland farmer's
protest, published in 1979, was about the leadup to the protest, the
protest itself, and its lengthy and disturbing aftermath.
Ms Slee said the new book will comprise a summary of the original protest
then, and how they see its lasting effect from a 2013 perspective.
''I intend to interview not only the actual protesters, but those who chose
not to protest, those who were onlookers that day on Dee St, and those
who were affected in some way at all by the protest.''
Ms Slee said she welcomed people's recollections and the opportunity to
interview them in early 2013.
''I am also interested in viewing any films or photographs taken on the
The book will be launched in time for a reunion dinner to be held in
Invercargill on Saturday, June 8, 2013.
If you wish to be interviewed for the book and/or attend the dinner email
June Slee on firstname.lastname@example.org.
FROM Page 10
REMEMBERING BLOODY FRIDAY --- 35 YEARS LATER
Federated Farmers didn't endorse actions
friends and asked them to bring 10
of their skinniest ewes to Inver-
cargill on the back of a truck.
Syd and Owen, who was made
spokesman, decided the protest
should take place on the busiest
day of the week, a Friday, as it
would cause the most impact.
The original plan had been to
simply let the sheep loose down
Invercargill's main street, but
then the pair decided the sheep
should be slaughtered.
''Most of the sheep were dying
''They were old and emaciated,''
About 300 farmers, some with old
ewes on the back of their trucks,
met at the Lorneville saleyards
and were told by Owen if they
wanted to back out they should do
Federated Farmers tried to talk
Syd and Owen out of the
slaughter, but they were adamant
it had to happen for maximum
''We stuck to our plan.
''We didn't do this under Feds -- it
was a farmer protest,'' Owen said.
The protest was kept under
wraps. Even The Southland Times
didn't know exactly what was
about to happen.
As the sheep were released they
made their way down Dee St.
They disappeared into shops
while others munched fresh green
grass in the main street plots.
Owen remarked that the townies
were ''very sympathetic'' to the
farmer's protest and while both
Syd and Owen risked arrest
''It was a pretty radical step for
law-abiding people, but it was a
good feeling that we were doing
something at last,'' Syd said.
The ewes were then humanely
slaughtered at the Borstal bridge.
The protest made headlines and
both Owen and Syd, who became
national heroes, received plenty of
letters of support over the
''The majority of people were
positive -- the few that were anti
were mainly freezing workers,''
While much has happened in the meat industry since the South-
land farmer's protest, it was a major turning point for industrial
Big business: DairyNZ chief executive Tim Mackle said the annual average revenue from milk production was $1.2
million per farm.
Dairy remains in strong position
Southland dairy farmers were
congratulated for a job well done
but also asked to continue
working to improve the indus-
try's public image at the
DairyNZ annual meeting in
DairyNZ chief executive Tim
Mackle said the dairy industry
pumped millions of dollars into
the regional economy.
''The average annual revenue
from milk production is more
than $1.2 million per farm,'' he
''At least half of that money is
being spent on farm working
expenses and circulating
through the local economy.''
Dairy NZ chairman John Lux-
ton said the New Zealand and
Southland dairy industry had
shown considerable growth and
resilience to factors impacting
With workers uncertain of their
jobs at the Alliance Group's
Mataura plant and job cuts at
the Tiwai Pt aluminium
smelter, the dairy industry
remained in a strong position,
World demand for high-quality
protein products continued to
Mr Luxton said the dairy
industry would continue to
grow despite the challenges of
the economic slowdown in
Europe, which would impact on
the Asian market, and the high
New Zealand dollar.
''All exporters would like to see
the dollar come down but world
demand for dairy is also
remaining strong,'' he said.
The Southland and New Zealand
dairy industry would remain
buoyant because the industry
continued to innovate and
evolve. Despite being widely
acknowledged as a vital part of
the New Zealand economy, the
dairy industry still faced a
public image problem, Mr
''The industry does not get the
credit it deserves for leading the
way in funding and delivering
A pro-active approach to sus-
tainable dairying, balancing
profitability with environ-
mental responsibility was key to
changing the industry's image.
Federated Farmers Southland
president Russell MacPherson
said at the annual meeting that
Southland dairy farmers were
happy with the job DairyNZ was
''Farmers are still paying their
levies and if they were unhappy
they would be storming the
DairyNZ played an important
role supporting dairy farmers to
adapt and understand the future
direction of the industry.
The annual meeting in Wal-
lacetown allowed farmers the
opportunity to scrutinise where
their levy payments were going,
Mr MacPherson said.
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