Thursday, 13 August 2020 11:11

Beef + Lamb’s advice for farmers

Written by  Staff Reporters
The Greater Auckland region is under Alert Level 3, whilst the rest of the country is under Alert Level 2. The Greater Auckland region is under Alert Level 3, whilst the rest of the country is under Alert Level 2.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand has released advice for farmers amid new COVID-19 restrictions.

The Government announced late on Tuesday night that the Greater Auckland region would move back to Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country would move to Alert Level 2 at 12pm on Wednesday. 

Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) is strongly encouraging farmers to review their systems and ensure they are prepared in case the alert levels are increased in the near future.

Director-General of the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), Ray Smith has confirmed that the same definition of essential services used for the lockdown earlier this year will apply again. 

Farmers in or around the Auckland region – what does Alert Level 3 mean?

MPI is offering specific advice for farmers within the Alert Level 3 region on its website, including steps to take on farm and what essential services and suppliers you can still access.

Main on-farm implications

• Farmers do not need to register as an essential service at Alert Level 3. 

• Here is a boundary map of the Auckland region that Alert Level 3 applies to.

• Employees will need a letter authorising that they are essential worker to cross the boundary, either to come from within the Auckland region to a farm outside the region, or to come to the Auckland region and employ someone from outside of the region. Here is an employee movement letter farmers can use.

• As a business, farmers should ensure that they are following good on-farm protocols to protect workers and ensure swift contract tracing for anyone coming onto the farm. Here is a 10 point plan developed from the last lockdown with advice that still applies.

Access to essential services and farming equipment

• Farmers will have access to key essential services, contractors and supplies. The following is a link to the MPI list, but B+LNZ recommends farmers contact suppliers to confirm arrangements:  

Farmers across the rest of the country

• Farmers do not need to register as an essential service at Alert Level 2.

• All farmers across the rest of the country are currently operating under Alert Level 2 and should be taking practical steps to protect their family, workers and others who may come onto the farm.

• Farmers should take steps to ensure there is good hygiene on their farm, that workers maintain at least a distance of one metre, and they should keep track of those coming onto the farm so that contact tracing can be easily enacted if necessary.

What does this mean for processing?

Processing and exporting companies are reviewing their systems to comply with the Alert Level 3 and Level 2 requirements, drawing on the protocols developed last time around. 

At this stage, they are not foreseeing delays but are encouraging farmers to get in touch with their livestock representatives.

Along with Retail Meat New Zealand, B+LNZ are continuing to advocate for butchers to be open to face-to-face customers under Alert Level 3.

B+LNZ is encouraging all farmers to review their systems in case the alert levels are raised

B+LNZ says the situation can change quickly, therefore it is encouraging farmers to review their systems and ensure they can quickly adjust in the case their region or the whole country moves to Alert Level 4.

Farmers should think about the services or supplies they may need over the next few weeks and talk to their supplier to ensure they have a plan in place to get these if the country moves to Alert Level 4.

B+LNZ will provide further advice if the alert levels rise.

B+LNZ events

For now, B+LNZ will still be continuing with events that are outside the Auckland region and that have under 100 people.

B+LNZ staff are currently reviewing what is coming up and will be in touch with farmers if any events they had registered for have been cancelled and where feasible moved to virtual meetings to better manage risks.

Further information 

• B+LNZ’s COVID-19 webpage.

• The Government’s COVID-19 website

• MPI’s sector-specific information on COVID-19 .

More like this

Migrant workers set to return

About 50 migrant dairy workers could potentially benefit from the Government’s border exception for work visa holders.

Keeping it local!

The inability to bring in experienced overseas workers is one of the big difficulties for the potato industry as it heads into the next growing season amid COVID-19.

Featured

 

Fonterra back in the black

Fonterra chief executive Miles Hurrell says 2019/20 was a good year for the co-op, with profit up, debt down and a strong milk price.

Strategy to reduce heifer mastitis

First calvers are more prone to mastitis than older cows. According to DairyNZ, farmers must choose a strategy that best suits their herd, farm team, and budget.

National

Helping grow farming’s future

John Jackson’s ability for future and critical thinking saw him deeply involved in the development of an agribusiness programme that…

Nothing sustainable without profit

Chair of Dairy Environment Leaders programme Melissa Slattery believes that sustainable farming is highly important to young farmers.

Machinery & Products

JD updates header line-up

John Deere has updated its entire header line-up for combines to include the new HDR Rigid Cutterbar Drapers, RDF HydraFlex…

Hybrid harvesters launched

New Holland has entered the world of hybrid headers, launching a new machine that blends its conventional threshing drum and…

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Burn!

OPINION: This old mutt had to have a giggle at the dig Feds recently made at the Green Party in the…

Why?

OPINION: Your canine crusader was aghast to read that the prices of zucchini and cucumbers rose more than 30% in…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter