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15 October 2019

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In this week's newsletter:

New structures for new challenges
 

Einstein famously said the definition of insanity is to do the exact same thing again and again and expect things to change.  Ever since he said that we have proved it to be true.  The Government has some really big changes coming...

Read Mike's blog here.  


Update on freshwater consultation and proposed NES for Commercial Vegetable Growing 


Submissions on the Government’s freshwater consultation are due at the end of October.  We will circulate the draft HortNZ submission on behalf of growers for comment by the end of the week as well as a draft pro forma submission for growers to consider using.  

HortNZ has also been asked by Environment Minister, David Parker to put forward our ideas about how vegetable growing in the future can be regulated as part of our comprehensive submission.

We will put forward the concept of a specific National Environmental Statement (NES) for Commercial Vegetable Growing.  This would provide a nationally consistent planning framework. It would also take precedence over all the existing council rules that currently regulate commercial vegetable growing in New Zealand.  Click here to read the full update.  

Government must focus on maintaining land’s productive capacity

Moves by the Government to protect highly productive land must focus on maintaining the productive capacity of that land. 

‘We need a national policy that ensures New Zealand can grow enough vegetables and fruit to feed itself, now and in the future, and at affordable prices,’ says HortNZ Chief Executive, Mike Chapman. 

‘That’s why we support the Government’s action to protect highly productive land.  However, policy makers must also remember that the land itself is only one factor in vegetable and fruit growing. 

‘Growers also need access to water for irrigation, they need to be able to apply sufficient fertiliser, and they need to be able to operate machinery like frost fans and infrastructure like packhouses, 24/7 depending on the time of the year.

‘If for any reason, growers cannot do this, they need to have the option to use the land for other purposes.’  Read the full media release here.

Reform proposals survey result


Thank you to those growers who responded to our survey on the Government's reform proposals. 

Your feedback will inform our submissions to the Government on your behalf.  Some of the most interesting results were that 90% of respondents said that they should not be required to use a certified consultant to make their Farm Environment Plan, and 87% said that councils should be required to consider Highly Productive Land in future urban development planning.  For the full results, click here.

High alert for stink bugs

 
Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way.
 
'We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in New Zealand. The high season runs until 30 April and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink bug establishing itself here,' Mr O’Connor said. 
 
'It’s an especially timely reminder for those travelling to Rugby World Cup matches. A recent swarm of green stink bug and yellow spotted stink bug have occurred in Kobe, Japan. Biosecurity New Zealand staff based there will continue to ensure we have the right measures in place. We want to keep the risk offshore as much as possible.'  Read the full media release here.

Seasonal employment website improved


The seasonal employment website set up last year by the Ministry of Social Development and Joy Business Academy to make it easier for seasonal workers to find a job and for employers to find the right person has been improved.  

The Work The Seasons website is described as 'another channel to complement your usual practices for recruiting your seasonal workforce'.  You can view the website here.  

Horticulture Careers Promotion Coordinator wanted


This great new role would see you helping people in horticulture to thrive in Central Otago.  The successful applicant will act as a point of connection between growers, industry related businesses, education providers and the Central Otago community.  To find out more, click here.  Applications close on 20 October.  

Become a HortNZ Future Director


HortNZ is seeking a Future Director to serve on its board.  The year-long appointment will allow the successful appointee to gain experience in governance, leadership and strategy while bringing their own horticultural knowledge and experience to the board table.

This is a great development opportunity for a future leader with a genuine interest in governance, as the Future Director will also have the opportunity to be mentored by an industry leader and receive a contribution towards their governance training.

If you are interested in this role, please send your CV and a cover letter to Kerry Norman. Applications will close at 5pm, 25 October, with the successful candidate attending their first board meeting on 20 February 2020. You can view the Job Description by clicking here.

MPI Postgraduate Science Scholarships open 


Applications close on 8 December for Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Postgraduate Science Scholarships for PhD and Masters students undertaking primary sector research.

MPI says the scholarships 'help build science and technology capability and promote the exciting range of science careers on offer across our primary industries, from fisheries to forestry, agriculture to food and biosecurity'.  Click here for more information.  

Apply now for Primary ITO scholarships 


Applications for Primary Industry Training Organisation (ITO) scholarships covering the duration of a horticultural apprenticeship programme are open now.  For more information, click here.  

Telling Our Story
 

Farmers Weekly: Sainbury’s tips big food shifts

Radio NZ: Countdown says customers moving to plant-based proteins

The Country: Kiwifruit edition
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