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The Council has decided to help with funding for environmental dairy farm plans for Marlborough dairy farmers over the next three years (2012–2015). Some farmers in the Rai area have already received farm plans through the New Zealand Landcare Trust over the last couple of years and have found them useful tools to help with planning and prioritising environmental work on the farm.
The basic aim is to reduce the risk of effluent or other pollution from getting into waterways, but each property is different and the ways to achieve this will vary from farm to farm. This is where the farm plan is useful, providing a three year individualised work programme, with priorities set out for each year.
About 10 farm plans per year will be offered at a set fee of $1500 (half price). This includes a full day with an experienced consultant to discuss and look at the farming operation. A report with maps will then be prepared and provided, along with a further visit in a year’s time to help measure progress and prioritise any works.
The programme is supported by the Landcare Trust, Dairy NZ and Fonterra. A working group (Brent Morrison, Sharon Parkes and Mark Zillwood) has been set up to help the Council run the programme.
The Council wants to work positively with the dairy industry and individual farmers to help everybody to achieve the environmental requirements, standards and practices that will assist them being successful in the dairy industry into the future. Helping to fund individual farm environmental farm plans is seen as a positive way to do this.
The environmental farm plans are offered on a first come first served basis to dairy farmers in the Rai, Pelorus, Havelock and Linkwater areas. To find out more about the project contact Nicky Eade at the Marlborough District Council, Ph: 03 520 7400, email: email@example.com