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Why regenerative wins – every time

By Peter Burton To have a view on regenerative farming it’s essential that the term be defined, and in our view most New Zealand pastoral farmers are currently abiding by regenerative farming principles and have been for the last fifty years or more. Any operator on a...

Has farming sold its soul?

By Peter Burton The days of capital gains, particularly on intensive dairy operations has come to a grinding halt and that’s causing real concern amongst many farmers, and it shouldn’t. A payout in excess of $7/kg/MS should provide any well-run operation with enough...

Farmers have been misled

By Peter Burton In Oct 2006 an article was published containing a summary of a report by Tim Bromilow a Scottish soil scientist after having spent 6 weeks travelling around New Zealand. Although complimentary in regard to the ability of Fonterra, scientists and famers...

When less N leads to more growth

By Peter Burton   I recently read a report on the experience of a large dairy operation where there was a 20% reduction in pasture production Year 1 when changing from a conventional N driven soil fertility programme to a certified organic programme. In time a...

No change for some.

By Peter Burton The saying in the investment world, “you’re either a contrarian or a victim” could equally apply to the farming community. No-one I’ve spoken to applauds the introduction of the recently announced fresh-water standards, soon to become a legal...

Why the cow is not the problem

By Peter Burton Were the cow the problem the answer would be simple.  Eliminate cows and the problem goes away. Without cows pastures would rapidly move from high fertility grasses and clovers to low fertility browntop, followed by gorse, scrub, and eventually native...

Encouraging signs, but the danger remains

By Peter Burton On almost a daily basis I talk and work with farmers moving away from the soil fertility model focussed on driving mono-culture pastures with soluble phosphorus accompanied by regular applications of nitrogen. Those in that group I’ve had contact with...

It’s all about carbon

By Peter Burton Soil carbon seems to have been given the ‘too hard to measure’ label, and therefore given little importance in the debate on the future of farming, and that’s wrong because it is fundamental to our survival. The most valued soils are the deepest...

Stuart Pritchard Organic Farmer

By Lloyd Chapman – OTAKI MAIL, MAY 2019 The three Pritchard brothers, David, Nigel and Stuart are old Ōtaki identities. This story involves Stuart, whose cv talks of dairy farming, horticulture, property development, land and building amongst other career activities....

Fundamentals misunderstood

Peter Burton 16th June 2019 Farming is quickly becoming a taxation bonanza for the government.  A tax on nitrous oxide and methane emissions is coming even if not labelled as such.  Farmers ultimately will fund ongoing research that will spawn further study on other...

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