New DVD For Farmers

Published: Mon 27 Jun 2011 10:29 AM
New DVD For Farmers
The Fertiliser Quality Council (FQC) is to produce a DVD explaining why farmers should only use Spreadmark accredited fertiliser spreaders. The Spreadmark scheme was incorporated in 1994 by the New Zealand Groundspread Fertilisers Association (NZGFA). Aerial Spreadmark was incorporated at a later date.
To be Spreadmark accredited drivers and pilots have to be trained to a high standard, the spreading trucks and planes are independently audited to establish they can spread accurately and the spreading companies systems are independently audited. What that means is that farmers can be assured that the fertiliser will be spread according to their specifications.
FQC chair, Neil Barton, said farmers need to be convinced that using Spreadmark operators makes good financial and environmental sense.
"Independent research by the Centre for Precision Agriculture at Massey has shown that bad spreading on dairy farms can cost a farmer $60 a hectare," Neil Barton said. "The figure for sheep and beef farms is less but still considerable.
"That means using non-Spreadmark operators who may offer lower spreading costs is false economy.
"In addition we have some Regional Councils insisting Spreadmark operators are used to spread fertiliser in sensitive environmental areas.
"The message for farmers is that the benefits of Spreadmark can be measured in dollar and environmental terms.
"Fertiliser is generally the largest running expense on a farm," Neil Barton said. "It must be spread accurately if you are to get value for money."

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