Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor is shuttling around Hawke’s Bay this week to look firsthand at the region’s worst farming situations.

And of course the farming community should appreciate the $500,000 that he brought up from Wellington to drop into the Mayoral Drought Relief Fund.

In a time of emergency and severe hardship, no one can be anything but thankful for this attention.

Still, it’s a shame no one will take Minister O’Conner to visit the Hastings District farm pictured here … photo taken earlier this month.

Obviously this farmer has been doing something right.

What is it, and why isn’t every HB pastoral farmer doing it? And why isn’t the Government bursting with enthusiasm to advocate and support such resilient, water retaining practices?

The answers to those questions should be crucially important to Minister O’Connor. Why not visit the leading edge of Hawke’s Bay as well Mr Minister … and take Mayor Hazlehurst and Chairman Graham on this eye-opening visit with you.

Maybe your next visit?

[Editor’s note: Commendably, Minister O’Conner’s staff contacted BayBuzz the morning this post was published, looking to squeeze in this stop. Couldn’t be fitted in this time, but be assured we’ll keep an eye on his future calendar!]

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  1. I would be interested in hearing more about this farm. Why aren’t the media jumping on this, this is ‘real’ news, and his story should be herd……(pun intended)

  2. Asking why every pastoral farmer is not doing this displays such ignorance that I cannot respect such commentary

  3. Kathryn, our readers would be thrilled to hear the reasons why this farmer’s apparently resilient pastures cannot be replicated by others In HB. Is there something unique about his property? Is he just a case of ‘dumb luck’? What’s he doing that’s different from his neighbours? Enlighten us please.

  4. I too, would like to hear the reasons Kathryn does not believe it is possible to ‘regenerate’ farming practices in Hawke’s Bay – or anywhere…? If there is any way at all of developing such rich, water retaining pastures across our region then, rather, it would be ignorant to ignore. I agree with Nigel. If this is a solution to our never ending drought problems, it behoves farmers, government, (and media), to fully explore and embrace!

  5. This photo is irrelevant if the specific district it’s located isn’t identified and amount of rainfall, or I suspect irrigation it has had prior to the photo being taken. There is huge variabilty of rainfall throughout the Hawkes Bay area.

    1. Patoka. No irrigation. It’s about what’s planted, what inputs, what animal management.

  6. Amazing that we have those who can’t imagine a solution! There is one! It is called regenerative farming…. Carol, this farm is not a trick photo and there was no irrigation prior to the photo being taken… Simply put – there is a solution! Are you brave enough to make the changes??

  7. Regenerative farming practices have been around for years. Over the last thirty I’ve read hundreds of articles on the topic. Even featured on Country Calender quite a few times. To not be at least looking into the practice, reading the articles on it if you farm in HB smacks of the old adage. “There’s none so blind as them that will not see. “

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