Friday, May 27, 2011

A dose of reality

Here's a dose of reality for people who want to knock farmers and reckon they don't pull their weight.

13 comments:

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Where was his bloody wife?

Andrei said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrei said...

But but but Lou doncha know that dairy farming is the biggest source of evil GHGs (that would be greenhouse gases for all you newbies) in New Zealand.

Anonymous said...

They could milk once a day and get more solids. They could milk A2 and get a premium.

Farmers are important for sure but life isn't easy for lots of us.

Lou Taylor said...

No one is saying that life is easy for people but farming has unique challenges that are not always understood or even acknowledged.

We face this stuff daily on our farm - catapillars eating the maize, crickets eating new grass, mechanical breakdowns, cows dying, staffing issues, never ending maintenance,high empty rates - just to name a few.
The only quick solution is to throw money at them. The season was going downhill by December due to drought but thankfully has turned aroud by a lot of hard work and a kind autumn.
Every other business I've been associated with has also had there issues so we are all really in the same boat.
The politicians play us off aginst each other only for their own benefit.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 7:23 you dumb dumb when you milk cows once a day you get less milk solids from them (15% approx)not more.
As for A2 milk sure it has a niche market for health conscious but surely you aren't expecting 11000 odd dairy farmers to spend umpdeen millions changing the whole genetics of all their cows to supply A2 milk to a few health conscious greenies?

I mean hello where is a premium in that?

Think before you write please

Jimmie

Anonymous said...

Quite a thoughtful piece.

Anonymous 7.23pm - it is the start of mating and you think once a day milking is an option? A possible routine for a Jersey herd around Christmas time, if that decision is made before they come under feed pressure.
A big jump in somatic cell counts as cows try to fight off mastitis bugs themselves.
Foregoing milk income to save on labour costs is the sort of trade-off involved, if you are in farming just for a lifestyle.
Not every dairy farmer can make such plans for a variety of reasons, and they need to be very sure they have weighed up all the costs and all the potential benefits.

In the article the farmer pushes the tailenders up the race and wishes he has a dog sometimes. Both are a no-no on the modern dairy farm as they cause lameness and high somatic cell counts from stress in cows. If young cows are being bullied he should consider split herds, more work but fewer empties, fewer low performance culls, and better Autumn conditioning pre-winter.

If he can hear the escaping water hissing then he knows where the leak in his waterline is.

Bloat deaths are always a management problem.

Money spent on Vet treatment "early" is never a waste of money, either economically or morally (if you have any respect for animal welfare).

This guy can make some performance increases and have a much healthier herd and bank account.

The casual labour is a liability.

But then Adolf could have told him all that.

James said...

As an ex Diary farm cadet I can attest to the validity of this piece....brilliant.

If getting up in the cold,wet night to calf stuck cows and getting covered in shit,blood and afterbirth is your idea of an easy and fun lifestyle then give Dairying a go.... otherwise shut the fuck up.Cockies deserve every dollar they end up with....they really earn it.

Anonymous said...

Actually Lou, I would have thought cockies should know when they get into farming what they are up for right?

Farming is a business with assets and liabilities, profit and loss through good and bad times, end of story.

To claim cockies are the saviours of NZ, maligned and misunderstood is bullshit.

My advice is don't get into lion taming if you dont want to get bitten by a lion or politics if you dont want to get knifed every now and then.

Lou Taylor said...

I'm not claiming cockies are the saviour of NZ, just a part of it.
I found it to be a great challenge to help make the farm to be the best it can be.The beauty of dairying is the huge amount of research and help available. There are excellent people out there doing great work on pasture growth, nutrition, animal health, milking technology etc. These are where the production increases can happen. Per head production is the name of the game, not trying to cram more cows in.
I have also been involved in retail and the building industry and the same type of challenges are involved. The moment you stop developing is the moment you start going backwards.
If NZ had leadership that promoted a team approach between town and country we would all be much better off but the main political parties will always resort to what they know best, divide and rule.

Anonymous said...

James at 11.22:

Cockies deserve every dollar they end up with....

Absolutely true, whether it is a lot, or not much.
They are the authors of their own fortunes (and misfortunes).

Either way, they need to keep quiet about it.
Nobody else wants to know.








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Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Anon 1.10

You're wrong. Phil Goff needs to know.

I wonder how he'll go on the cross benches in December?

Anonymous said...

Adolph, Goff is not interested in the answer.
Goff has political mileage to make by bashing the cockies.
There is no cost to Labour in doing this.
The votes of the envious are there to be won.
Facts are irrelevant.
It is all in the headline.
Labour is on a winner here.