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Sheep and Beef Optimism

Greetings Readers

The Southern North Island Sheep and beef Cattle farmers Conference yesterday provided your editor with an interesting insight into that much less publicized section of New Zealand’s pastoral industry – sheep and beef production

On the theme of “Grass into Gold” a wide range of excellent speakers followed through a sequence of key aspects involved in the profitable management of pastoral grazing systems.

From the initial premise that well managed grass is profitable grass when producing products for relevant markets the speakers tackled their subject with positive technological precision based on an optimism that was refreshing to hear.

The significant point made in the conference was fact that pastoral farming and livestock production and marketing are a system. Albeit a complex system that has been left to the rugged individuals of the sheep and beef industry to fight out the development and ownership of in the manner of the robber barons of old.

For if it had been a simple production system sheep and beef production would have now been carved up, consolidated, merged, integrated, segmented, harmonised and packaged like the current chicken and pork industries of the world.

But the speakers indicated that thinking is changing

Early recognition by individual farmers of the fact that pastoral production is a system and therefore the tools of systems management and cooperative development used in other industries will equally apply to sheep and beef production could well ensure that pastoral producers will retain ownership of the wealth that their industry can produce.

The conference speakers gave sheep and beef farmers good reasons to be optimistic producers for more reasons than the current pricing windfall.

Good farming

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