The wettest December in the 18 years we have been here has set the farms up well for a good January. The organic farm is 25% up on a daily basis and the conventional dairy up 8% on 10% less cows. Both farms have made good quantities of silage, with more to come off as soon as the weather allows.
Clover growth, particularly red clover, has been outstanding and has helped improve milk protein levels. Weeds are flourishing also, equalling more chasing weeds and less time on other maintenance. Organic maize is struggling against the weeds and it will be interesting to see which wins.
The bulls have been removed from both herds after a 10-week mating period. Loading the bulls on the truck is always a mission and is a game of bluff and intimidation between the bulls, people and rails. This year was accomplished with only one scary moment and no breakages.
Farming is currently having a golden run with favourable climate, reasonable prices and low interest rates. Our partners in the organic dairy wish to sell their 50% shareholding as they have other interests they wish to pursue. We are working through the pros and cons of taking total ownership.
I have managed to have a good day fishing with son Daniel; we caught good snapper, innumerable large kahawai,(like salmon) saw dolphins, sharks and a sea horse. We are still a long way from having enough fish in the freezer to eat fish on a weekly basis though.
Farmer Focus: George Moss
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