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New Zealand drought recovery: focus on feed

New Zealand Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor recently announced a medium-scale adverse event due to dry conditions, for Southland, Queenstown Lakes, Central Otago, Clutha, Grey and Buller districts, Wellington, Taranaki and Manawatu-Whanganui. The Government has provided funding for Rural Support Trusts and agencies to help those farming communities.

Mr O’Connor said while recent rain had helped to green up parts of the country, NIWA’s NZ Drought Index showed soil moisture levels were still lower than normal in Southland, and in the North Island’s coastal areas from Taranaki and the Manawatu southwards.

“I encourage farmers to make the most of Federated Farmers’ feedline at, which is a free service to both members and non-members. Farmers should also talk to their advisers about feed planning options. The Rural Support Trusts are doing great work in helping farmers manage the situation and I thank them for it.’’

According to an article by, O’Connor said that in the lower North Island particularly, farmers had been unable to make their usual feed supplements due to a prolonged wet winter, short spring and then drought. He encouraged farmers to talk to their accountants, banks and rural professionals about other forms of managing financially through recovery.

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