Presentation on theme: "1Demand for food will rise faster than population 2Food production must rise by 70% to feed 10b 3Meat production is set to double within this 4Linear growth."— Presentation transcript:
1Demand for food will rise faster than population 2Food production must rise by 70% to feed 10b 3Meat production is set to double within this 4Linear growth will fall short of target 590% of growth must come from improved yields 6This calls for substantial changes to systems
7Arable land per person is falling; 0.38ha in 1970, 0.23ha in 2000 to est.0.15ha in 2050 8Even after another 70 million ha is brought into production by 2050 9Of which 50 million ha less in developed world and 120 million ha more in developing world
The size of the prize 1We will not influence global demand for food or global pollution 2These events will influence us 3Calorifically we produce enough food for c.20 million people 4In a world of 7 billion people, that is one person in 350. Insignificant. 5But we do supply dairy products for the diets of c.100 million people 6Aspirations to diversify the economy are attractive, even wise 7However, dairying alone can double its output without adding a single cow 8By feeding cows to their full potential 9At a $6.25 payout/ kg ms thats +$7 billion at the farm gate – every year 10And +$13 billion at the combined farm and factory gates 11Do we want to turn that down? 12Will we turn that down?
If the prize in dairying alone is $13billion, annually, just for more milk at a realistic payout, what are the trade offs? 1New Zealand is purportedly the 2 nd fastest-changing landmass on the planet 2Being located as it is on a highly active plate boundary 3And with many rocks and soils susceptible to erosion (non-metamorphic) 4Causing naturally-abrupt changes to baseline ecology & water quality 5Lakes and lagoons are ephemeral features in geological timescales 6What is the definition of pristine in a massively modified NZ ecosystem? 7What baseline will NZ Inc. choose and why? 8How many water bodies in New Zealand should be pristine?
Can we have it all? Possibly. It depends on who pays. We have the technology now Depending on how we define good or pristine 1Human consumption and the rights of other species are NOT win:win 2Dairy farming directly exploits three species (cow, grass, clover) 3On an area of land that used to sustain hundreds if not thousands of species 4A house is typically even worse – its aim is to sustain just one species 5Technologies exist to increase the productivity of farming 6Whilst reducing the second-tier impact of farming on the environment 7Humanity simply must intensify farming and reduce its consumption of land 8If it has a genuine and meaningful concern for the survival of other species 9The question is, do New Zealanders genuinely want to be part of that? 10Is it our moral obligation?
Do we need a national debate on: what is ecologically rational and what is not what the definition is of pristine and why it is that what the definition is of good and why it is that which water bodies should be returned to pristine whether all others should be returned to good whether polluters should always pay alone whether the community should contribute too E.g., Waituna is special and probably special globally. But the Waikato Basin is special to its local community and that community may feel as passionately. Neither community, however, is en masse going to stop consuming dairy products, including fresh milk.
How can we farm intensively and reduce pollution? By managing soils, water, pastures and effluent. How can we do this? By: 1protecting pastures from overgrazing and trampling of plants 2protecting soils from compaction 3feeding cows with far less wastage of feed 4capturing significant amounts of dung and urine 5returning them intelligently to the soil… 6always thinking of the soil microbial biomass and its vitality 7and thus balancing the loading of C, N and P returned to the soil 8avoiding the capture of unneeded and unwanted rainwater
Yes, this is possible. Heres one way to do it:
It goes like this: 1Manage when to let the cows graze 2Stand off at vulnerable periods for soils 3Supplement the cows diet with other feeds 4Feed these other feeds to cows in a home 5Capture dung and urine at stand off 4And in the milking yard 5Roof all vulnerable areas 6Precisely spread dried effluent on paddocks 7And separately stored, liquid effluent too A dry cow will often eat her daily requirement in three hours A lactating cow will usually eat 70-80% of her daily requirement in 3 hours Leaving a cow in a paddock for <4 hours will often do minimal damage to soil Roofing working areas will avoid collecting 1-1.8 metres of annual rainfall
The opportunity here is to.......... reduce fertiliser applications by >80-95% reduce run off of N and P by >50% reduce soil compaction between 60-100% improve pasture production by up to 100% improve milk production by 100% (if fed fully) improve profitability by >100% We can all win
The upfront capital cost of pollution control can be high After sheep retreated and before dairy surged, Otago and Southland struggled. We enjoy banking the economic benefits from dairying So, will the ratepayer or the taxpayer or the SuperFund (investing in green technologies) help farmers make the transition to a new, lower impact/ higher profit system of farming?
We can and should immediately introduce technologies and systems that greatly reduce dairyings impact. If they have significant upfront capital costs then perhaps the community should help ease the burden. And as a country shouldnt what we do now be to show humanity how we can help meet human nutritional needs whilst containing our footprint to ever smaller areas? A small yet valuable global contribution; low impact, pasture plus, partially housed, dairy farming.