fbpx
Print this page
Friday, 10 April 2020 11:55

Shearing not cut out

Written by  Pam Tipa
The Shearing Contractors Association has put out a set of guidelines on shearing in conjunction with Fed Farmers, which has been provided to MPI and Beef+Lamb. The Shearing Contractors Association has put out a set of guidelines on shearing in conjunction with Fed Farmers, which has been provided to MPI and Beef+Lamb.

Shearing has been deemed an essential service, but people must come first, says Mike Barrowcliffe, NZ Shearing Contractors Association president.

“The last thing an 80-year-old farmer wants is a whole lot of young people who haven’t been self-isolating turning up to his place to shear his sheep,” he says.

Everyone should put safety first throughout the whole supply chain – from the farmers themselves to contractor employees, Barrowcliffe told Rural News.

“They need to ask the questions, is it essential and can it wait?” he says.

He says while everyone wants to go to work, not all can at the moment for many different reasons.

“We have to be mindful and respect people’s opinion. They might have an underlying health issue; someone they are caring for may have one or it may just be the age demographic.”

Barrowcliffe says everyone is taking Covid-19 very seriously. 

“The self-isolation, the farmers preparing their work sites, what the shearing contractors are doing to get their staff to work, and while at work and once they have left work as well.”

He says animal welfare issues also must have priority. 

“Let’s use preventive animal welfare issues rather than reactive ones.”

The New Zealand Shearing Contractors Association has put out a set of guidelines in conjunction with Federated Farmers which has been provided to MPI and Beef+Lamb.

“As long as everyone follows those and respects the intent of those well, I can’t see a problem with the current information we have and how to manage or control Covid-19.”

He says with so many jobs and tasks in farming you have to apply the rules as is required to each situation.

Barrowcliffe adds that flexibility is needed, but so is social responsibility.

“Reinforcing that yarn that farmers need to be proactive and think about what essential jobs are coming up, put steps in place to make sure that their work sites are set up for us to enter and for us to make sure we have got suitable staff that can come on and do the job for them.”

More like this

Editorial: Get vaccinated!

OPINION: Rural NZ is again getting the rough end of the stick when it comes to services - this time in relation to Covid-19 vaccinations.

RSE flights ramp up

Quarantine free flights, bringing much-needed Pacific Island workers to New Zealand, are being ramped up.

Rural vaccination message from Damien O'Connor

OPINION: Rural New Zealanders and those working in the primary sector play a vital role in our response to COVID-19 and it's important they take the opportunity to get vaccinated against the virus, says Agriculture and Rural Communities Minister Damien O'Connor

National

Industry reacts to UK FTA

Primary industries stakeholders  are welcoming the new Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United Kingdom announced today.

Historic FTA deal struck

Comprehensive, inclusive and high quality and providing fantastic opportunities for our exporters.

Tatua smashes $10 barrier

Waikato milk processor Tatua says keeping products moving to overseas customers during the pandemic was one of the highlights of…

Machinery & Products

Robo planter on the way

German farm machinery manufacturer Horsch says it is at an advanced stage of developing its aptly named Robo autonomous planter.

Keeping everyone safe

As tractors get larger and front linkage kits become more common, many have started fitting underrun or collision protection systems.