What’s been happening around the country? | Issue 200

Jun 7, 2024

What’s been happening around the country?

It’s only been a few weeks since the last DFA Stagline (which was delayed to allow for some coverage of the conference), but we are now well and truly in winter mode and feeding out is probably a daily occurrence for most.

Looking at the weather outlook it should be a “normal” winter for most places although drier in southern and western parts of the South Island. However to date it sounds as if Marlborough hasn’t received that memo yet as it is still very dry and the challenge will be if there is sufficient soil moisture come spring.  Best wishes to you (and others in a similar situation). 

There’s also a bit of NZDFA Branch activity happening in June with SCNO holding its AGM this Thursday (6 June) and Central Regions following in a couple of weeks. Looking further ahead into July there is a planned farmers evening with the DINZ Board in Nelson (17 July) and the NZDFA Executive Committee will also attend.

As always, branches please let us know if you have any meetings or activities coming up. We (the NZDFA Executive Committee and Producer Management team) can help with advertising and also provide any industry news or updates from DINZ.

In this issue we hear from Luka, the DINZ Environmental Stewardship Manager, on a recent submission by DINZ to the Climate Change Commission.  I can see everybody’s eyes rolling already, but this continues to be a major issue for our industry and particularly for deer farmers.  Both the DINZ submission and the NZDFA’s submission supporting DINZ can be found here:

Staying with the environment South Canterbury deer farmer Danette McKeown has an article on winter grazing as a follow up to the workshop that the branch ran in late April (see last issue of DFA Stagline:  What’s good about Danette’s take on it is that she looks at it from a cost-saving, production aspect first and foremost rather than the “thou shalt be an eco-warrior” theme that regulations seem to take.  Oh, but actually when winter grazing for deer is done properly, with deer welfare in mind, it turns out that it’s good for the environment too (who would’ve thought?!).

Although there is not a lot of visible activity in the NZDFA, a few things in the background are worth reporting on:

  • NZDFA Constitution Review – required under the (new) legislation for incorporated societies. We will advise branches when this is completed, but most will not need to do anything as they fall under the (national) NZDFA constitution.
  • NZDFA AGM remits. Mark McCoard has highlighted the focus of the Executive Committee on the NAIT and AgResearch remits. Work in progress and we will let you know any developments.
  • Next Generation Programme. 8-9 August in the Manawatu (Central Regions branch). Currently we are accepting nominations from the branches to ensure a good spread and focus on first timers. However we will soon open up registrations to everyone; check the events page on the DINZ website (
  • DINZ is also planning on undertaking more roadshows as it has done in previous years. As yet no dates are set but likely to be in the first week of September. 
  • Our feedback from the conference has been overall very positive and valued by the attendees. There are always areas to improve on and we have taken these on board and will incorporate as much of these as we can for next year’s conference in Queenstown.  The NZDFA AGM is set for 13 May 2025, with the conference and field day following (14, 15 May). Planning for this will begin shortly.  It’s the NZDFA’s 50th anniversary so we want to make it a memorable one!

Once again please let us know any upcoming branch activities and if you would like any assistance or input from NZDFA and DINZ staff.

Did you know that DINZ also provides support for NZDFA branches through a Community Engagement fund and budget for NZDFA Leadership Development and Branch Support.

Keep warm and may your feed be dry and plentiful!

Continue reading DFA Stagline Issue 200

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