2024 Deer Industry Conference 8 & 9 May – Napier | Issue 198

Apr 4, 2024

An Incredible Legacy - the past, the present, the future

The industry has had a remarkable journey since the first deer farm was licenced in 1970 and it is currently undergoing some major structural changes: Markets are changing; our genetics have come a long way; deer farmer demographics are moving from our pioneering origins to tech-savvy, tertiary-educated operators; DINZ is implementing a new and different strategy as well as undergoing a major re-structure.

The theme of this year’s conference aims to reflect this change in the industry: “An incredible legacy – the past, the present, the future".

Following the NZDFA AGM at 9.00am the conference kicks off at 10:30 am with the familiar State of the Industry address by the DINZ Chair.  It is unlikely that there will be a new DINZ CEO on the ground by then but quite likely there will be an appointment announced and possibly that person will be attending in person.

The markets update will be eagerly awaited as more information on the access for frozen velvet to China will be high on everyone’s mind as well as how efforts to diversify venison markets are translating to profitable prices paid to the farmer.

Last year a common complaint was that there was not enough time for questions to the DINZ Board, so this year there will be a full hour set aside for that.  Come along with your questions!  However, if you don’t get the chance to ask them you can still try your luck at the long lunch break straight after that session.  

Plenty of time has been set aside to look at sponsors exhibits and catch up with mates.

The afternoon session will start off with a series of four workshops with people being able to attend three.  At the time of writing these are:

• New forages and feeding strategies

• Farming for venison and it fits in with other farming systems

• Genetics for profit

• Science update – turning good farming practice into sensible policy

Following afternoon tea, the conference finishes off with two speakers: Jen Corkran (Senior Animal Protein Analyst, Rabobank) and Murray Matuschka (deer industry legend and master craftsman).

Our MC for the conference and Awards Dinner is David Todd, a well-known Hawkes Bay personality.

The Awards Dinner is at the same venue (Napier War Memorial Centre). Winners of the photo competition will be announced as well as recipients of this year’s Deer Industry and Matuschka Awards, the last one presented by Murray himself.  

Shameless plug: There is still time to nominate someone for these awards – the closing date is 5pm Tuesday 9 April.

If your head is clear and you wake up in time the next day you can join the field trip to a Hawkes Bay deer farm (one that was badly hit by cyclone Gabrielle), hosted by the Hawkes Bay DFA branch. The branch always puts on a good show and there will be plenty of venison on hand for lunch.  The day will finish around 3pm to allow people to get to the airport for late afternoon flights back home.

All details can be found here: >>

Hope you can make it! 

Click here to REGISTER NOW!

Continue reading DFA Stagline Issue 198, next: 49th NZDFA AGM notice and Branch Chairs Meeting >>

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