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Lake Rotorua Primary Producers Collective
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May 2016 
Dear <<First Name>>
The golden run of weather has come to an end and fires will have been lit in the last few days. When the weather drives you inside, this e-news will keep you busy with all the information in it. You'll find links to the Collective and Federated Farmers submissions on PC10, info about what happens next in the submissions process and a round up of news and events. We look forward to seeing you at the Collective AGM. 
Happy reading! Remember, everything you read here is on our website - www.rotoruafarmers.org.nz
We can finally breathe a brief sigh of relief after the completion of the first stage of formal submissions last month. Spark email crashed in Rotorua about half an hour before the 4pm deadline on the 27 April. If you emailed a submission but have not had a formal response, and think your email may have been delayed, please let us know urgently so that we can apply for an extension for you.

I had to leave at a critical time in the writing of the submissions, (to deal with a family bereavement overseas), and left our submission in the more than capable hands of Neil and Chris. More than anyone, Chris deserves a massive thank you for her tireless work in pulling together and writing the Collective Submission. 

We owe another massive thank you to the Feds team; in particular Nicky and Liz, who also worked tirelessly on our behalf for many weeks. They have come up with some fresh perspectives and insights and have tried to steer the process back onto a better path. Their recommended approach broadly aligns with our opt-out position we presented back in September last year, i.e.  making  sure all the ducks are lined up before bringing in rules that could send us bankrupt. But there’s a lot more in the Feds submission. You’ll find the links to the Collective and Feds submissions below.  

And lastly thanks to all of you for your personal submissions. We will continue assisting you as we move forward into the second phase of submissions in the next couple of months. We’ll give you an update at our AGM on 20th June 2016. 

From Gisele Schweizer, Co-Chair of the Lake Rotorua Primary Producers Collective
Download the Collective and Fed Farmers Submissions on PC10
Members should have already received copies of the Collective and Fed Farmers submissions via email. We have now loaded these to our website. Click here to download the documents. 
What happens next in the PC10 submissions process?
 A total of ninety submissions were lodged during the formal submission period for the proposed Lake Rotorua Nutrient rules. All submitters should have received acknowledgment of their submission from Council.

So what happens next?  In a nutshell...
  • A summary of submissions will be made available and further submissions can be made (4-29th July)
  • All submissions will be evaluated and additional research undertaken (if required)
  • Public Hearings are scheduled to take place mid November. If you have made a submission you will have the opportunity to present to a Hearings Panel.
A diagram of this process can be found here
Lake Rotorua Primary Producers Collective AGM
All members will have received an email about the up coming Collective AGM. It is on 20th June 2016 from 6.30pm at the Ngongotaha Hall. All members are eligible for nomination on the Executive Committee.  Nominations for new Committee members must be made in writing (or email) to the Secretary by 17th June 2016.  All skill sets are welcome within the Collective. 

New members are very welcome to join the Collective, see the bottom of this e-news on how to join. The Collective provides our farming community with a voice to talk to both Rotorua Lakes Council and Bay of Plenty Regional Council on rural issues that effect us. You can find out more about who we are and what we do on our website.
New project to assess on-farm detainment bunds and phosphorus mitigation
A new Rotorua-based research project has been initiated, supported by the Sustainable Farming Fund (SFF), to investigate the ability of detainment bunds (DBs) to mitigate on-farm phosphorus losses.

Every year Lake Rotorua receives (on average) 23.4 tonnes of phosphorous from human activity which is about half of the total phosphorus inputs (48.7 T). This is about 0.36 kg of phosphorus lost from every hectare in the catchment. Detainment bunds can help reduce this flow of nutrients to the lake by temporarily detaining storm water run-off, allowing phosphorus laden particles to settle out.

The SFF project aims to validate the performance of DBs in terms of kilograms of phosphorus retained on farm and prevented from entering waterways. DBs are not farm ponds as no pasture is taken out of production.

The 20th Rotorua District DB was completed on a Rerewhakaaitu farm last month. Six of these existing DBs, including several in the Lake Rotorua catchment, will be the trial sites for SFF project over the next three years.

An inaugural meeting of the landowners who initiated the SFF bid was held recently. An executive committee and a local project manager were selected and the project was renamed the Phosphorus Mitigation Project.  The new governance group, chaired by Lachlan McKenzie, felt the former ‘The P-Project’ name had too many other connotations! The next task of this governance group is to form a Science Advisory Team that will finalise the project methodology. Read more
 
Meet Sharon Morrell: a Nuffield Scholar's experience
Sharon Morrell is well known to Rotorua dairy farmers through her roles as consulting officer and BoP regional leader with Dairy NZ. Her recent experience as a Nuffield scholar has added a new dimension to her understanding of how farmers can be resilient in the face of change.

Sharon’s interest in the Nuffield Scholarship programmes began on Twitter a few years ago, when she started following the journeys and experiences of previous Nuffield Scholars. A Nuffield Scholarship provides successful applicants with opportunities to examine, energise and focus their professional and leadership skills within the agricultural sector. The scholarship enabled Sharon to research her growing interest in how farmers adapt and respond to change.  

“Working alongside farmers facing uncertainty and knowing that we are in for more change led to thinking about how farmers elsewhere had managed” says Sharon. Her chosen research topic “Navigating constraints: Primary producers coping in changing contexts” was a logical choice given her experience of farming in this region.  Her research took her on an international journey that would hopefully shed light on the New Zealand context. Read more
 
Farmers muster forces to battle Ecan
North Canterbury farmers annoyed by the growing number of rules and regulations they face have formed a new group to ‘re-empower rural people with a voice’. Despite their efforts to look after their land and to protect the environment, the McFadden family found themselves in conflict with the Hurunui District Council. Read more
Tainui Group Holdings behind Lake Taupo protection breaches
Tainui Group Holdings has outed itself as the company behind the rule breach designed to protect Lake Taupo. Formal warnings have been handed out to a company and landowner which admitted they breached rules designed to protect Lake Taupo from nitrogen. Read more
Collective Executive Meeting
All members welcome
Date: Monday, 30 May 2016, 7.00-9.00pm
Location: Barclay House A&P Showgrounds
Workshop - Hazelnut, an alternative land use option
Find out more about this new crop alternative. Read more about this event here
Date: Monday, 13 June 10.00-3.00pm
Location: Rotorua Lakes Council Civic Centre, 1061 Haupapa St, Rotorua
Lake Rotorua Primary Producers Collective AGM 2016
We look forward to seeing you at the Incorporated Society's fifth Annual General Meeting.
Date: Monday, 20 June 2016, 6.30-9.00pm
Location: Ngongotaha Hall
Engaging women as critical farming partners
Understanding Your Farming Business (UYFB) engages women as critical farming partners through  building business knowledge, skills and confidence.
Dates: 31 Aug; 12 Sept; 12 Oct; 2 Nov. (4 full-day workshops)
Location: Rotorua (TBC)  
Cost: FREE
 

Would you like to become a member of the Collective?
Three reasons to get involved!


 1. Influence policy that will affect your farm business
 2. Learn about on-farm nutrient management solutions
 3. Get support from fellow farmers and industry bodies
  

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