Silver Fern Farms, which produces 30% of all NZ’s lamb, beef and venison, announced a major move toward supporting ‘regenerative agriculture’ practices, committing to a “Regenerative Future”.

Chief Executive Simon Limmer said:

“We want to embed sustainability into our brand promise. This demands not merely doing less harm, but doing going greater good by ultimately enhancing the eco-systems we operate in.”

“Consumer concerns are increasing with respect to soil health, emissions, biodiversity, agricultural intensity, water quality, and the resilience and sustainability of the current food system.”

“Alongside this, the global regulatory environment and community expectations are demanding that each of these areas are addressed by corporates and producers.”  

“There is only one direction of travel for our industry and Silver Fern Farms wants to be out the front leading.”

Amen!

As reported by Stuff, Silver fern Farms will support a group of suppliers to complete the Savory Institute’s ‘Land to Market’ programme, the world’s leading accreditation body for regenerative agriculture, in a bid to understand how farmers can receive greater value from the market.

Regenerative farming incorporates the following principles and represents the leading edge in sustainable farming, especially with respect to pastoral farming:

  • Year-round photosynthesis – diverse cover and forage crops;
  • Minimise soil disturbance (e.g. no-till sowing)
  • Integrated pest management;
  • Minimising synthetic fertilisers & other chemical inputs (including animal treatments);
  • Use of bio-stimulants  and mineral balancing;
  • Alternative grazing management (plant recovery, grazing densities, trampled litter);
  • Commitment to systems thinking and continuous improvement.

Here in the region, in July, the Hawke’s Bay Future Farming Trust is sponsoring three free presentations offering an introduction to alternative pasture and grazing systems that can regenerate better soils and build soil carbon.

The presenter is Siobhan Griffin, who has spent 25 years managing her own farm, learning that working with nature gets the best results. She coaches farmers to build topsoil working with their livestock, grazing deep-rooted and diverse pastures to build and regenerate soil carbon on New Zealand sheep/beef and dairy farms.

Originally from the USA, Siobhan now lives in New Zealand and understands New Zealand pastoral farming systems. Throughout her presentations, Siobhan gives New Zealand working examples of what regen farming outcomes look like.

Here are the three presentations dates, times, locations:

Date: Tuesday 20th July 2021
Time: 4.30 -6.30pm 
Venue: Rissington Breedlines Offices, 55 Soldier Settlement Road, Rissington

July 20 presentation hosted by Mangaone Catchment Group for Hill Country Sheep/Beef and Dairy farmers. 

Date: Thursday 22nd July 2021
Time: 2.30pm to 4.30pm
Venue: Wairoa Community Centre, 33 Marine Parade, Wairoa.
 
This presentation will focus on flat intensive through to steep hill country stations. 

Date: Friday 23rd July 2021
Time: 10am to 12 noon (tea/coffee and morning tea food from 11am)
Venue: Waipukurau Club, 10 Russell Street, Waipukurau.

The CHB presentation will focus on Sheep/Beef and Dairy farming.

To register for any of these presentations, email your name and which event you will attend to:

info@hbfuturefarming.org

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