Week in Review

[19 August 2021]

As we enter a new sudden lockdown in New Zealand, this week Covid-19’s impact on shopping behaviours has been released in a new report by Rabobank and KiwiHarvest. We see the opening of several opportunities for those seeking professional development opportunities in the sector, with the opening of Kelloggs Rural Leadership Programme, FoodHQ’s Strategic Thinking Scholarship, and a new ‘Generation Change’ course at AgriWomen’s Development Trust (here).

Internationally, focus is on the impacts of climate change on global food security as more businesses reflect on the recent ‘code red for humanity’ climate change report. 

This week Jack Keeys discusses consumer insights into the ‘age sandwich’ with a surging Generation Z population entering the market, and Aged population growth occurring simultaneously. The episode features a guest appearance from New Zealand’s top food Instagram influencer. 

Spotlight Stories

International Spotlight

'Code red for humanity' climate change report warns of food security risk: is industry ahead or behind the game? [13 August, Food Navigator]

In a landmark report, the UN’s intergovernmental panel concluded that it is already too late to prevent the Earth’s average temperature from rising by more than 1.5C above pre-industrial levels by the middle of the century. The report warned that the global surface temperature was 1.09C higher in the decade 2011-2020 than 1850-1900. Additionally, a rise in temperatures could result in reductions in yields of maize, rice, wheat, and potentially other cereal crops.

Tag: International, Environment & Emissions, Food security

Alternative Proteins Spotlight

Cell-based disruption: How many factories, and at what capacity, are required to supply 10% of the meat market? [13 August, Food Navigator]

The Good Food Institute, which supports the development of alternative proteins, commissioned a techno-economic analysis to estimate how the cultivated meat industry could supply 10% of the global meat market. It claims that by 2030, 10% of the global meat market is estimated to be at 40 million metric tonnes and suggests that one single, hypothesised facility can produce about 10 kilotons of cultivated meat annually. Therefore, to produce the 10% of global meat, 4000 facilities would be needed to house around 130 bioreactor lines, totalling to US$1.8 trillion.

Tag: Alternative Proteins, International, Food Innovation

This Week's Headlines

headline 1

Agri-tourism thrives as virtual farm tours go global and New Zealanders take to the hills for rural breaks [15 August, Stuff]

Entrepreneur Arthur Chin is offering livestreaming tours of his Palmerston North farm to counter the impact of border closures in overseas countries, and is earning NZ$5,000 in his best week. Over the past year, 5000 people from 32 countries have met Chin’s sheep, chickens, and kunekune pigs via Zoom. Additionally, Blue Duck Station owner Dan Steele was surprised that last year’s revenue was 20% above pre-pandemic levels. He says “visitor numbers were well down, but the quality was up” as he was getting New Zealand families coming for five days to do everything.

Tag: Farmers & Producers, Covid-19

headline 2

NZ potato industry continues growth despite 2020 challenges [12 August, Rural News Group]

The New Zealand potato industry sits at NZ$1.16 billion, a 58% growth rate since targets were set in 2013 despite the confirmed dumping of imported potato fries into the New Zealand market. Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment found this not to be a material threat to the local industry and Potatoes New Zealand chief executive Chris Claridge says the New Zealand government is leaving the gate open. Claridge adds, “a strong domestic market for NZ processed potatoes underpins our industry and maintains our growers’ resilience.”

Tag: Horticulture, Trade & Exports


Get used to surging food prices: Extreme weather is here to stay [13 August, CNN Edition]

According to an adjunct senior research scientist at the Columbia University Earth Institute, Cynthia Rosenzweig, the price spike in coffee beans, sugar, and wheat, demonstrates how extreme weather is having a real-world impact on Americans. More than 95% of the Western part of the United States is currently in some level of drought, and severe frosts have damaged coffee crops in Brazil. Climate scientists warn the fallout will only intensify from here as world food prices have soared by 31% over the past year.

Tag: International, Food security

Top stories

Groundswell NZ presents petition on 'unworkable regulations' to parliament [12 August, Stuff]

Groundswell NZ has presented their petition against what it calls ‘unworkable regulations’ for farmers to the Government as the regulations include compulsory sowing dates, winter grazing rules and the ‘ute tax’. In their submission, they used an example of the Queen Elizabeth II trust, which aids in the conservation of private land, to demonstrate farmers could work towards environmental goals without a “wall of bureaucracy”. Environment committee chair Eugenie Sage said they would consider the petition and produce a report which would then be sent back to Parliament and Groundswell.

Tag: Policy and Regulation, Farmers & Producers, Environment & Emissions

Mooney submits petition for MIQ placements for dairy workers [12 August, Stuff]

On Thursday, Southland MP Joseph Mooney submitted a petition after collecting 1,513 signatures in two months, calling on the Government to allocate 500 MIQ placements a fortnight for dairy workers. The petition came after the Government granted 200 border class exemptions for dairy workers but failed to allocate specific MIQ placements for those workers. “Calving is now well under way on many farms across the country, and staff shortages have put an immense strain on both farm managers and existing workers,” Mooney said.

Tag: Policy and Regulation, Farmers & Producers

Nutrient conflict looms for councils [12 August, Farmers Weekly]

The future of Overseer as a regulatory tool to limit farm nutrient losses hangs in the balance after a government-appointed panel identified weaknesses in its ability to capture nutrient loss and challenged its accuracy. While acknowledging its imperfections, OverseerFM chief executive Dr. Caroline Read has defended its use as a tool for monitoring trends and shifts in farm nutrient losses. However, the panel recommended more real-time water quality monitoring at a local level, including a call for more immediate climate data rather than the long-term monthly averages used by Overseer.

Tag: Environment & Emissions, Policy and Regulation, Farmers & Producers

Sector needs more female leaders [12 August, Farmers Weekly]

According to agribusiness entrepreneur Bridgit Hawkins, the gender bias in primary sector leadership means it is missing out on a wealth of talent vital to its future goal. Hawkins says, “diversity is incredibly important to innovation, to strategy, to your thinking about how you approach complex, challenging problems.” As a result, Hawkins launched ‘Fields of Change’ to address women’s leadership in agriculture and find out why the sector is missing a generation of women business leaders, which will affect its ability to remain world-leading.

Tag: Agribusiness

Herbicide resistance surging [12 August, Farmers Weekly]

Weed resistance to herbicides has become widespread in New Zealand with researchers finding that at least half the country’s arable farms and vineyards have species resistant to common treatments. “Our survey found 54 out of 87 properties had herbicide resistance in weeds. It was a very surprising result and makes weed resistance in NZ a very present danger, not a distant one,” Dr. Trevor James said. The researchers are embarking on a research programme which involves looking into farmers’ actions and weeds’ behaviour to understand the scope and mechanisms of resistance.

Tag: Farmers & Producers, Environment & Emissions

Food prices up in July [12 August, Rural News Group]

According to Statistics NZ, food prices increased by an additional 1.3% in July 2021 compared to June 2021, mainly influenced by higher prices for fruits, vegetables, and grocery foods. “Fruit and vegetable prices generally rise in winter as lots of summer produce is out of season and becomes more expensive,” says consume prices manager Katrina Dewbery. Fruit and vegetable prices significantly increased for tomatoes, broccoli and strawberries over the past year by 21%, 39% and 34%, respectfully.

Tag: Food Security

New kiwifruit breeding centre confirmed for Bay of Plenty [12 August, NZ Herald]

A new kiwifruit breeding centre has been formally approved in the Bay of Plenty and will begin operating from 1 October 2021. Its focus is on driving greater innovation within kiwifruit breeding, and creating healthier, better tasting and more sustainability-focused varieties, Zespri and Plant & Food Research said. "The centre represents our commitment to broaden our efforts exploring promising new varieties within our research pipeline and bring these to our growers and consumers faster” said Zespri chief executive Dan Mathieson.

Tag: Horticulture, Research & Development

Fonterra looks to get more value for NZ's 'white gold' as cow numbers decline [16 August, Stuff]

Fonterra Co-operative is looking to get more value out of New Zealand’s 10,000 farmer shareholders and turn their focus away from global milk pools as it faces a future of fewer cows. “Our milk is no longer growing so it gives you the ability to be a bit more choosy,” chief executive Miles Hurrell said. He adds, “if someone doesn’t want to pay the price now, or they don’t see the value in the New Zealand provenance and what we offer, well thanks but no thanks, there are markets out there that can.”

Tag: Dairy, Trade & Exports, Research & Development

Upping exports to South Korea to could reduce our reliance on the Chinese market [15 August, Stuff]

As South Korea emerges from Covid-19 in a much better shape than some of its Asian neighbours, Shott Beverages is amongst other exporters taking the opportunity to diversify their markets. Shott Beverages Chief executive David Shearer says “[Korea’s] last quarter GDP growth was 5.9%, so the economy is still roaring along here, driven mainly by exports of semi-conductors, electronics and vehicles.” Their success in Korea is evident due to the country having the highest per capita consumption of coffee in the world and Koreans having an annual average income of about NZ$45,695.

Tag: Trade & Exports

Animal welfare: Pork NZ petition asks for equal standards [15 August, NZ Herald]

The New Zealand Pork Industry Board is collecting signatures for a petition urging the Government to apply the same animal welfare standards to imported pork as those required by New Zealand pork producers. About 60% of pork consumed in New Zealand is imported, the majority coming from countries whose production practices would be illegal in New Zealand. If the petition is successful, it might push the meat price up, "which then makes my meat better value” says Ngaruawahia pig farmer and owner of the butchery Soggy Bottom Holdings Jono Walker.

Tag: Pork,Animal Welfare, Policy and Regulation

Dole Is Committed To Combatting The Global Crisis Of Food Insecurity [12 August, Forbes]

To help combat global food insecurity, Dole Sunshine Company recently promised to make nutritious foods accessible to one billion people by 2025. They aim to do this by driving their efforts towards reducing fruit loss, lowering greenhouse gas emissions, and eliminating fossil-based plastic waste. The company is on track to fulfil that promise as they have launched several initiatives, including The Sunshine for All Fund, which supports strategic partnerships and investments in increasing food access and reducing food waste worldwide.

Tag: International, Food Security

Pune: Sentient Labs, ARI collaborate to generate hydrogen from agri residue for use in fuel cell-powered vehicles [14 August, The Indian Express]

In India, an R&D innovation Sentient Labs and MACS- Agharkar Research Institute have developed a technology that generates hydrogen directly from agricultural residue for fuel cell-powered vehicles. This hydrogen generation technology uses agricultural residue rich in cellulose and hemicellulose content like paddy, wheat, or maize residue. “Hydrogen fuel cell vehicle technology is estimated to be the next big step in the direction of sustainable mobility as it provides a large operating range, is suitable for commercial vehicles, and leaves a minimal environmental footprint,” Sentient Labs Chairman Ravi Pandit said.

Tag: International, Agritech, Environment & Emissions

Ballance Agri-Nutrients Supports New Zealand’s Next Generation Of Innovators Through Science Fair Sponsorships [13 August, Scoop]

Ballance Agri-Nutrients (Ballance) has announced a nationwide programme of sponsorships intended to foster and celebrate scientific and innovative thinking among New Zealand school students. Eligible entries will explore topics such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reducing agricultural chemical use, nutrient loss to waterways, and other environmental concerns. “Sustainability is fundamental to our work at Ballance, and our aim is to foster and inspire the next generation to continue this mission,” says Ballance’s futures programme manager Suzanne Young.

Tag: Research & Development, Agribusiness

Research reveals key changes in Kiwis' food shopping and consumption behaviours [17 August, Voxy]

Research by Rabobank and KiwiHarvest has uncovered significant changes in New Zealanders’ food purchasing and consumption behaviours. Their findings include evidence that New Zealanders are now spending significantly more on food than in 2019, the use of food delivery services has risen significantly, awareness of and willingness to try meat alternatives has increased over the last two years, and preference is split between cheaper imperfect vegetables and full price, though more Kiwis have bought imperfect veggies in 2021.

Tag: Food Security, Food Marketing

Perspectives: Why we need to reshape the online food environment [16 August, Food Ticker]

According to a group of trans-Tasman academics, it is now the right time to shape the online food environment to promote easier access to healthier convenience foods due to the Covid-19 online food delivery surge. Studies show that food delivery allows easy access to junk foods and drinks, which presents a further challenge of increasing rates of obesity. Additionally, unhealthier menu items were more than twice as likely to be categorised as “most popular” than healthier options on Uber Eats, as well as being nearly one-and-a-half times more likely to include a photo.

Tag: Food Marketing, Food Security

Low hanging F&B opportunities in UAE – NZTE research [16 August, Food Ticker]

According to new research from New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) presents a fertile market for fruit and honey as UAE consumers made no country associations with the products as they did with France for cheese, dairy, and chocolate. As a result, it “leaves a white-space to capture consumers’ minds” for exporting countries. The research found that New Zealand stood out in UAE consumers’ minds as safe and premium, but there is also a perception that Kiwi products are expensive.

Tag: International, Trade & Exports, Food Marketing

Is Nestlé lining up A2 Milk? [16 August, Food Ticker]

On Sunday, the Australian newspaper reported that the Swiss multinational Nestlé has been keeping a close eye A2 Milk but states, “most think a suitor will only move after A2 reports its annual results”. A2 Milk are reporting their full-year results on 26 August, which will lay bare the full extent of Covid-19 tumult on the firm, as seen by their valuation fall of almost half to about NZ$4.7billion. “One observer says that if Nestlé thinks it can be a differentiator in powdered milk or infant formula it will look at A2.” wrote the newspaper.

Tag: Dairy, Agribusiness

NZ grower's squash milk creates new export patch [16 August, RNZ]

Hawke's Bay grower Shane Newman and Sachie Nomura, a Japanese celebrity chef who developed the world’s first avocado milk, are diving into Asia's alternative proteins market with their plant-based milk called Kabochamilk. "Our Kabochamilk uses the unexported tag-3 fruit, creating a high-value, sustainable and exportable product from produce that would otherwise go to waste," says Newman. He adds, while all their product would go offshore, they are using local farmers, local R&D and local manufacturers, packaging, and domestic logistics companies.

Tag: Food Innovation        

Zero Carbon Act could cost Waikato farms $5,200/year [17 August, Rural News Group]

Waipa-based chartered accountant Jarrod Godfrey is encouraging farmers to be proactive and budget when the Zero Carbon Act comes into force in 2025 as he says the average Waikato dairy farm could incur a $5,200/year cost. He says that having knowledge of that number now is preparing farmers for when the pricing system for agricultural GHG emissions is announced in 2025. Godfrey recommends using the tools already available through Dairy NZ and He Waka Eke Noa, including GHG emissions calculators.

Tag: Environment & Emissions, Dairy, Farmers & Producers

Dairy prices gain at overnight auction, snapping eight consecutive declines [18 August, Stuff]

The global dairy trade price index gained 0.3% from the previous auction a fortnight ago, ending the eighth consecutive decrease. Prices for skim milk powder, butter and anhydrous milk fat increased, while whole milk powder declined. NZX dairy analyst Stuart Davison said “whole milk powder prices continue to let the team down, but it seems that the momentum of the whole milk powder price slide has slowed, and prices might start to find some support in the near future.”

Tag: Dairy, Trade & Exports

Kellogg scholarship now open [16 August, Farmers Weekly]

Kellogg Rural Leadership course applications are now open and there is an opportunity for one Northland recipient to have their course paid for by Whangarei A&P Society. The scholarship aims to assist with growing Northland’s tomorrow leaders in the primary sector. Andy Mouritz, the first recipient of the scholarship, said “I highly recommend the programme to anyone looking to develop and test themselves as well as learn from some of the most respected people in the primary sector.”

Tag: Honours & Awards

Top global dairy brand [18 August, Rural News Group]

Chinese company Yili, which owns two milk processing plants in New Zealand, has been chosen as the world's most valuable dairy brand. The Brand Finance Food & Drink 2021 Report says Yili has boasted strong sales growth, up 13% year-on-year, with the long-term forecast for the brand looking positive. Yili posted an 11% increase in brand value this year to US$9.6 billion and claims second spot behind Nestlé in the Brand Finance Food 100 2021 ranking.

Tag: Food Marketing, International, Dairy

Tight entry criteria [17 August, Rural News Group]

Sheep milk producer Spring Sheep Dairy have added five new farmer suppliers, bringing the total to 14, however are limited with the number of new suppliers they can take on due to projected market demand for the company. CEO and founder Scottie Chapman said they want to work with partners that have the same ideals and cultural values as they do. New suppliers also need sheep with the right genetics to make sure they can run a profitable operation.

Tag: Dairy, Food Marketing

FoodHQ opens strategic thinking scholarship [17 August, Food Ticker]

Applications are open for a FoodHQ’s Agrifood Strategic Thinking Scholarship designed to help emerging leaders within the New Zealand agrifood sector develop strategic thinking skills. The scholarship enables successful applicants to join the Manawatu-based food science and innovation hub’s existing cohort and participate in its programme of case studies, facilitated discussions, engagement with senior industry leaders, and site visits.

Tag: Honours & Awards

Get in touch

Audit – Auckland
Ian Proudfoot
09 367 5882
Management Consulting – Wellington
Justine Fitzmaurice
04 816 4845
Agri-Food – Auckland
Jack Keeys

09 363 3502
Private Enterprise – Hamilton
Hamish McDonald 

07 858 6519
Agri-Food – Auckland
Andrew Watene

09 367 5969
Consultant – South Island
Genevieve Steven

03 307 0761

Farm Enterprise – South Island
Brent Love

03 683 1871

Field Notes Administrator
Angelo Marundan
+64 9363 3624