OPINION: The decision by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) to impose an immediate halt to live animal exports in the wake the sinking of the Gulf Livestock 1 off the coast of Japan is a sensible move.
The Sheep and Beef Land Productivity Programme comes out of the recently released Manawatu-Whanganui Growth Study, which identified the sheep and beef sector as a key opportunity for the region.
“This region has the largest number of sheep and beef cattle of any in New Zealand, so improving the performance of these farms will be an economic boost,” says Guy.
“We know the top 20% of red meat farmers achieve returns about four times more than those of the average red meat farmer, irrespective of land class and location. This shows the potential on offer.
Guy says a regional working group has begun developing a draft programme structure, looking at how to support farmers to reach their goals and remove barriers to them doing so.
“It will inform and inspire farmers through practical initiatives that make sense and work on the ground,” he adds.
“Of course the Government can’t and shouldn’t do this on our own and this will require involvement and investment by farmers and stakeholders. So it’s great to see there is widespread support from regional leaders to get cracking.”