Sheep farming - back to the future
New Zealand Agriculture is renowned around the world for producing excellent products, systems, technologies and farmers. However, the sheep farming industry is nearing crisis stage with profitability reduced significantly over several years, due to low relative returns and rising costs of production, particularly land values. The result has been rising debt levels, a reduction in sheep numbers, and changes in land use. These issues have put additional pressure and stress on the sheep industry and offer less incentive and options for recruitment and retention of people into all areas of our value chain, particularly production farming. This project stems from the need to develop low cost, easy care sheep farming systems that work alongside nature to ensure relatively low cost of production, low labour requirement and the ability for farmers to be successful across three key areas - profitability, lifestyle and sustainability.... [Show full abstract]
Keywordssheep farming systems; sheep industry; sheep meat production; South Island hill country; sustainability; profitability; lifestyle
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