Tag Archives: production

GLOBAL – G20: FEFAC Focuses On Increasing Production – June 22, 2011

GLOBAL – The European Compound Feed Manufacturers’ Federation (FEFAC) President, Patrick Vanden Avenne, has called on the European Commission to focus on measures allowing the increase of production and productivity for world agricultural production at the upcoming G-20 Farm Ministers meeting on 22-23 June 2011 in Paris.

In an open letter sent to EU Farm Commissioner Dacian Ciolos, Mr Vanden Avenne pointed to the need for Farm Ministers to emphasise the importance of developing efficient and sustainable feed and livestock production, representing the major outlet for vegetable crops and co-products from the food and biofuel industry.

He said that “Food security should become a strategic policy goal both at EU and global level”.

“Modern feed and livestock production provides key solutions to effectively deal with price volatility and supply of affordable food products for a growing world population”.

He pointed to FEFAC members’ involvement in a series of public-private partnership seeking to increase sustainability and resource efficiency of livestock and feed at national, EU and international level.

The increase of feed efficiency is a key tool to improve performance of livestock production. He welcomed the EU Farm Ministers conclusion at the May Farm Council meeting that access to competitive raw materials is the key for a competitive sustainable development of EU livestock production.

He said that FEFAC fully supports any efforts of EU and global regulators to increase market transparency on financial markets as well as on physical commodity markets but strongly advises EU and national government authorities to associate the private sector both regarding exchange on market information on production and stocks as well during the management of crisis situations.

FEFAC is calling on the EU Farm Ministers to systematically tackle and review regulatory burden and remove measures which may hamper the fluidity of markets for agricultural raw materials, without compromising feed and food safety standards. These measures raise legal uncertainties leading to lower predictability of agricultural markets, which amplifies normal market price volatility (e.g. the EU GMO policy).

Information TheCattleSite News Desk

CHINA – China’s Chief Vet Meets Fonterra CEO – June 16, 2011

CHINA – On 31 May 2011, Chief Veterinary Officer Yu Kangzhen met with New Zealand Fonterra Co-operative Group Global CEO Andrew Ferrier. They exchanged views on matters related to strengthening cooperation in the field of dairy industry.

Mr Kangzhen said he greatly appreciated the development of dairy cooperation between China and Fonterra, acknowledging the increase in NZ dairy exports to China.

Mr Kangzhen said that NZ could continue to help China in many ways:

  • Cooperation in supervision over quality and safety of fresh milk
  • Exchanges in breeding and improvement of dairy cows
  • Technical cooperation in quality and safety of fresh milk production
  • Demonstrations of large-scale dairy cow farming
  • Strengthening of dairy farmer training and technical skills

Mr Ferrier agreed with what Mr Kangzhen said, and noted that Fonterra would have closer cooperation and coordination with various authorities and regions through joint efforts for greater achievements.

Information TheCattleSite News Desk

NEW ZEALAND – Crafar Farms Buyer To Increase Production – April 19, 2011

NEW ZEALAND – Shanghai Pengxin Group Ltd, the conditional buyer of the 16 Crafar dairy and dry stock farms in the central North Island from the Receiver, plans to increase milk production from the properties and help the dairy industry capture a bigger share of the Chinese market with branded, dairy-based consumer products.

In doing so it will invest in upgrading the farms, employ more New Zealanders and work co-operatively with New Zealand dairy plants to create and manufacture products such as baby food, cheeses and ice creams that will appeal to the fast-growing Chinese and other Asian markets.

Shanghai Pengxin Group is a successful conglomerate, founded about 15 years ago, with significant investments in commercial and residential real estate, infrastructure, mining, finance and agriculture, and increasing involvement outside China.

It is building up sheep breeding operations in China and plans to have flocks totalling three million within five years. Since 2005 it has had a controlling interest in a large-scale farming operation in Bolivia producing sorghum, soybeans and corn and is negotiating further farming investments in Argentina and Cambodia.

For its planned New Zealand dairy industry involvement, Shanghai Pengxin Group has established a fully-owned, Hong Kong based subsidiary, Milk New Zealand Holding Ltd, whose only director will be Jiang Zhaobai, chairman of the Shanghai Pengxin Group.

Milk New Zealand has this week lodged an application with the Overseas Investment Office for approval to purchase the farms.

Capital to fund the purchase of the farms and other related assets will be provided by a shareholder advance from Shanghai Pengxin Group.

The initial commitment, once approval has been received, is an investment of more than $NZ 200 million in buying the properties and related assets and upgrading the farms in the first two years.

Details of New Zealand Plans

Company spokesman Cedric Allan says the company intends to make a positive contribution to dairying in New Zealand, tapping into New Zealand expertise, and increasing employment, milk production and export earnings, as well as spending in local communities.

Milk New Zealand Holding Ltd will establish a fully-owned subsidiary, Milk New Zealand Farming Ltd, to run the farms in New Zealand, totalling about 8,000 hectares.

Milk New Zealand Farming Ltd will be responsible for day-to-day management of the farming operations. Two of the three directors will be New Zealanders with appropriate experience in the dairy industry.

The company will also work with New Zealand processors to develop, manufacture and export a range of added- value, dairy based products to be marketed in China and elsewhere in Asia.

Mr Allan says the company would prefer to work in partnership with New Zealand processors rather than establish a new facility.

Farming Plans:-

  • During it due diligence period Pengxin has taken advice from leading New Zealand farm consultants and environmental consultants on a farm-by-farm basis to ensure the credibility of its plans for the farms it has conditionally purchased.
  • Sharemilkers and staff currently running the Crafar farms will be retained and will be advised by a team of professional New Zealand farm consultants, in turn working under the direction of a New Zealand general manager of Milk New Zealand Farming Ltd.
  • Existing herds will be purchased from the Receiver at independent valuation and progressively upgraded.
  • An upgrade programme will be implemented for each property including herd improvements, increased soil fertility, re-grassing as appropriate, new management techniques and other initiatives.
  • The farms will also be upgraded from an environmental perspective, with better control of run-off, and fencing off native bush, wetlands and sensitive areas in accordance with detailed assessments and plans completed by New Zealand environmental consultants. The quality of water in rivers and streams flowing through the properties will be enhanced, and the properties will be farmed on a sustainable basis.
  • Areas of importance to local iwi will be preserved and respected and arrangements for access made.
  • The aim is to increase milk production by more than 10% by the end of the third year.
  • Milk New Zealand Farming will work cooperatively as part of the New Zealand dairy industry, and intends to offer scholarships for young New Zealand farmers and the opportunity of exchange visits to China.

Processing Plans:-

  • Initially the company will continue to supply raw milk from its farms to Fonterra.
  • However, the aim is to add value to the raw milk produced on the farms by developing new products for export to the booming Asian market, recognising the strong demand for dairy products in China, which is already New Zealand’s biggest market for dairy products.
  • Products such as baby formula, ice cream, cheeses and others, would be created and branded to appeal to Chinese and Asian consumers
  • The company plans to work in partnership with North Island dairy processing plants to develop and manufacture this range of products, rather than establishing its own manufacturing operation.
  • Manufacturing and exporting will create more employment in New Zealand and further increase New Zealand’s export earnings.
  • The intention is to invest more than $100 million in marketing this range of products over the first five years, and to make best use of Pengxin’s business contacts and local knowledge in China.

“There are a number of winners under this overall scenario,” said Mr Allan. “The country gains significant overseas investment, spending on upgrading the properties from a production and environmental perspective will benefit local communities and suppliers, more milk will be available for export and –as soon as processing arrangements are in place — New Zealand can benefit from supplying the Asian market with new added- value products.

Future Opportunities

“Having a strong friend in China, now the world’s second largest economy, could have many advantages for New Zealand,” said Mr Allan.”In time, the Shanghai Pengxin Group may be interested in other investments in New Zealand, as well as seeing opportunities to use its connections and local knowledge to help New Zealand organisations export various products to China and other Asian countries.”

Shanghai Pengxin Group has established the MOY Global Innovate Enterprise Centre to assist companies wishing to break into the Chinese market, providing contacts, local knowledge, access to capital, a Shanghai base from which to work and other assistance. American companies are already using this resource , which can also be accessed by New Zealand businesses wanting to do business in China.

Information TheCattleSite News Desk

GLOBAL – Stockperson Attitudes Linked To Dairy Cow Welfare And Production – April 2011

Stock people with high levels of empathy and job satisfaction and low negative beliefs result in higher milk yields.

Animal Bytes

There’s no evidence of a direct link between stockperson personality and milk yield, but it does appear that attitudes are important.

“And our study, in conjunction with previous research, suggests that the attitude of the stockperson may be related to the subsequent milk yield they obtain,” said Queens University’s Donncha Hanna, who led a team of scientists who investigated the relationships among personality traits and attitudes of 311 dairy stockpeople and the milk yield they obtained.

A questionnaire pack consisting of a big-five measure of personality (which includes the traits of extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, emotional stability and intellect), a four-factor attitude questionnaire and associated demographic and production questions was posted out to Northern Ireland dairy farmers.

Correlations were used to assess the relationship between personality and attitudes and partial correlations were calculated between milk yield and these psychometric measures. And the work showed that the personality traits of agreeableness and conscientiousness were most strongly correlated to positive attitudes towards working with dairy cows.

None of the stockpeople’s personality traits were significantly correlated with the milk yield they obtained. Three of the attitude scales, however, were significantly correlated with milk yield; milk yield was related to higher levels of empathy and job satisfaction and lower levels of negative beliefs.

“These findings, along with previous research, suggest stockperson attitudes may be important in relation to dairy cow welfare and production,” said Dr Hanna.

“And one application from these findings would be to use attitudes to select employees into the dairy industry and also to identify those individuals who may benefit from training. Making individuals aware of their own attitudes and personality may provide insights to address weaknesses in their own stockpersonship,” he added.

Information TheDairySite