Gordonton farmer helping others

Gordonton dairy farmer Graham Bowmar is one of five Waikato farmers taking part in a nationwide campaign to help farmers through a tough season.

Tactics for Tight Times is a revival of a scheme run in the 2009-10 season when the payout fell following the Global Financial Crisis. It will provide a forum for farmers to share what worked for them and options to remain profitable.

More than 26 dairy farmers nationwide will be hosting field days to share their farm information, says DairyNZ project leader Carolyn Bushell.

“Farmers can come to a field day event where they can have discussions, ask questions and learn for themselves directly from other farmers and hopefully share it with people who have been through this before.”

Bushell said the campaign will support farmers and their decisions around pasture cover, production, stock health and cashflow to help them get through this season into 2015-16.

It will pull together research, data and lessons learned from similar seasons to help farmers prepare for next season because the retrospective payments farmers received from the dairy companies would impact into later this year, she said.

“Those people will open up their farms and their stories for local people to come along.”

As well as hearing from the host farmer, the days will include speakers outlining new research and tools farmers can use.

The host farms will be a range of different systems and ownership structures ranging from sharemilkers to owner-operators.

“What we are also trying to do with the campaign is support all farmers, but also people who are first-year [sharemilkers] and haven’t been through this before. It’s a new experience and tougher for them.”

  • Dates are still being finalised, but Graham Bowmar’s field day is expected to take place at the end of February/early March.  Watch this space for more info!
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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

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