New Zealand Pasture Trip 2017

The tour to the South Island of New Zealand was an eye opening insight into the innovation, professionalism and dedication that the NZ grass farmers have towards their game.

The trip, hosted by Agricom and AusWest seeds, was a real opportunity to gain insights into the next level of grass management. Higher land costs have forces the New Zealander’s hands into driving their business to perform at a higher level. It raises many opportunities for us to learn from, particularly around the issue of pasture production, utilisation, and focused fodder crop production during known seasonal production shortfalls, primarily winter. The trip exposed us to a number of operations, commercial businesses and research stations.

My highlight was a commercially focused research station run by Glen Judd. As we arrived, we were met by Juddy, in gumboots, giving us his “warts and all” story of the realities of running a commercial grazing business on a research farm. This was the perfect meeting point between science, research, development, production, and finally, the profit driven business.

This approach by Agricom, with “animals on the trial plot”, gives me confidence in their research direction. In Glens words, he was trying to make the systems break, which is something rarely seen on trial plots, but something that us cockies are prone to try to do. Thank you for the opportunity to see what we are likely to be doing in another 10 to 20 years, we have learnt that we can be doing it now.

Cameron and Rachel Greig Oak Hill Partnership

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