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Catch crops, commonly referred to as cover crops are nothing new. Already used extensively in cropping, they are traditionally sown in autumn to provide feed over winter for stock, conserve nutrients and reduce weeds, runoff, and wind erosion.
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The demand to reduce livestock methane emissions is not in some distant timeline. That is glaringly close for biological businesses that can take several years to adjust and respond to altered environmental expectations.
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We are currently experiencing substantial increases in the price of fuel, for both bulk fuel delivered on farm and card fuel purchases at the pump.
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Ruralco Chair Jessie Chan was recently appointed as a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to Dairy and Agriculture.
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Newly appointed Ruralco Director Andrew Barlass has spent the last few years returning to his roots, in more ways than one.
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One Taranaki family has managed to step aside from the whirlwind impact of manuka honey goldrush, keeping firm to their values of sustainable, healthy hives and good relations with landowners.
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A family legacy of forward-thinking coupled with careful planning, world-class breeding and a proud agricultural heritage, will ensure the McKerchar family’s Shrimpton’s Hill in Cave, South Canterbury, remains at the forefront for generations to come.
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Grass grub larvae may be small, but as many farmers found in autumn 2021, they’re capable of causing major problems.
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Crop residues are a useful resource for returning nutrients and building carbon and organic matter into the soil.
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Following tough summer conditions, forage oats for fast grazing can be a get out of jail card for most farmers looking for quick feed in late autumn, while May and June sown oats provide valuable winter ground cover and an early spring silage opportunity. Oats also have a special power when it comes to catch cropping, being able to soak up excess nitrogen which can present a risk of leaching in fallow soil after the grazing of a winter crop such as kale or fodder beet.
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