NZ Dairy Winter 2022

54 | nzdairy Environmental compliance ‘will come at a cost’ Taranaki sharemilker Harley Ogle with staff member Brittany Riddick (top left) and outside the new calf shed. Karen Phelps “I personally know of people who don’t want to be farmers any more but we need new blood coming through...” Whether living in town or country, every New Zealander needs to take responsibility for their impact on the environment, believe Taranaki sharemilkers Harley and Sarah Ogle. While farmers have often been singled out, Harley says every person has an impact – positive or negative – and it’s up to all of us to make change. He is adamant though that any change needs to be practical and useful. “There are lots of things farmers have to do these days and it can get overwhelming. Some, like wearing a helmet on a quad bike, are obviously useful. But I feel there are many changes that are not so practical. I personally know of people who don’t want to be farmers any more but we need new blood coming through as we need people to grow the food for the public to eat,” he says. He notes, as an example, that with many rural areas not having great internet connectivity it can be challenging to le the required paperwork online promptly. He says the rapid pace of change is making some reconsider their role as farmers and it is something the concerns him. Until recently a piggery was run as part of the business but several changes, including new regulations, made it impractical to continue. DAIRY PEOPLE » Harley Ogle “Around 60% of pig meat in New Zealand is imported but overseas piggeries aren’t subject to the same requirements. It’s created an un-level playing eld for local farmers,” he says. He says environmental compliance will come at a cost at the checkout for consumers and that the public have to be prepared to potentially pay more for their food so it is produced in a more sustainable and environmentally friendly way. Harley and Sarah are sharemilking a 114ha effective unit in Normanby, South Taranaki owned by Sarah’s parents Ted and Val Gane and Ted’s brother John and his wife Diane. Harley also grew up on dairy farms and completed an ag training course after leaving school. He met Sarah while at his rst sharemilking job working for her uncle and he and Sarah completed a variety of sharemilking jobs together in South Taranaki after getting married. They moved to Sarah’s parents’ farm in 2002. The farm milks a herd of 320 predominantly Friesian cows through a 44-bail rotary shed with automatic cup removers and in-shed feeding system. Two good payouts in a row have allowed them to invest in a new calf shed (the old one had its roof torn off by a small cyclone), improve races and fence off more waterways. They plant chicory as a summer crop and teat sealing the heifers has resulted in almost no mastitis in heifers and a bulk somatic cell count average last season of around 159 where it used to be 200-250. They are working on reducing this even further. Last season they achieved their best ever production of 151,000 kgsMS. This season due to facial eczema they will achieve 144,000 kgsMS. Harley acknowledges that with the stresses farmers are facing in general he is lucky that they have good back up and support of family. Val rears the calves, Ted helps out on the farm and John travels down from New Plymouth to also help out and he and Diane take care of the bookwork. The farm also employs one staff member – Brittany Riddick – who Harley says is a valuable part of the team. Specialising in rural services with over 20 years in the trade means you are choosing an Electrician you can trust. Available 24 hours a day 7 days a week (06) 272 8210 027 515 5442 Call Chris for all your electrical needs. The team at Chris Perrett Electrical Solutions service a large area of South Taranaki. SYSTEMS Home Of • Milking Systems • Cooling Systems • Drafting Systems • Feed Systems • Water Pumps • Pools & Spas • Effluent Systems BETTER DAIRY SOLUTIONS Based in Hawera Phone 06 278 4902 Proud to be supporting Harley Ogle 06 278 5088 Farm& Business Accounting • Financial Planning & Advice Taxation Services • Payroll Specialists WE SERVICE ALL REGIONS OF NEW ZEALAND CALL US ON 0800 OSPFEED High Quality Stock Feed for Optimised Milk Production Proud to supply Harley Ogle with their feed supplies