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Biological farming comes under focus

The emerging challenges and opportunities in biological farming would come under focus at a national conference next week.

The Conference, second in an annual series, will be held on February 20 and 21 at Rydges Hotel, Rotorua.

More than 120 farmers, Maori landowners, soil and environmental scientists, land management specialists and officials from government agencies, regional councils, fertiliser companies, agricultural and horticultural businesses are expected to attend the Conference, which will commemorate the International Year of Family Farming (2014) designated by the United Nations General Assembly.

Rotorua Mayor Steve Chadwick will inaugurate the Conference.

Prominent speakers

Among the speakers are Nicole Masters, spokesperson for Association of Biological Farmers (who will outline the benefits, threats and opportunities for biological farming), Dr Tanira Kingi (AgResearch), Dr Oliver Chikumbo (Scion), Dr Malcolm McLeod (Landcare Research) and Abie Horrocks (Plant & Food Research).

Reece Moors, Executive Director, Maori Development Unit at the Business,

Innovation and Employment Ministry will chair the session.

Growing interest

Professor Guna Magesan, Conference Coordinator and Science Advisor to Te Arawa Federation of Maori Authorities said that interest in biological farming has been growing in New Zealand.

“We need to take this to a different level now. The Panel session on ‘Progressing Biological Farming’ will be a turning point, creating history in the movement of biological farming in New Zealand. The Conference programme includes technical sessions of oral and poster presentations and Conference dinner,” he said.

Further information can be obtained from Te Taru White on 027-6552106 or Jeanette Watkins on 027-4357515; Email: admin@tearawafoma.co.nz; jacwatkins@xtra.co.nz

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