Imported lamb from NZ more carbon neutral than home produced?

Pan mixer

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Near Colchester
I usually listen to the farming programme on Radio 4, I am not always on full alert though and must cinfess to the occasional lapse in concentration.

This morning I am sure that i heard that imported lamb from New Zealand can be more carbon neutral than home produced lamb.

Whatever sort of perverse calculation has been done to come to this conclusion?

It beggars belief.
 

Bury the Trash

Member
Mixed Farmer
They work on their lambs doing quicker so killed quicker also no corn fed , less fuel requirement also if no or not much silage etc used .

Suitable genetics are needed to do this of course.

bigger flocks per man power run over larger parks / areas .

Lorries and big ships transport is more fuel and resource efficient than little Ifor Williams trailers running around with 15 in.

don't shoot me, the messenger.
 

CornishTone

Member
Location
Cornwall
Board of Trade Report end of last month made the suggestion. Obviously the Board of Trade is going to make the argument for international trade of anything but, their argument hinges on a kg of meat on a huge container ship and ignores… pretty much everything else whilst making some rather bizzare claims about both countries production systems.
 
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kiwi pom

Member
Location
canterbury NZ
They work on their lambs doing quicker so killed quicker also no corn fed , less fuel requirement also if no or not much silage etc used .

Suitable genetics are needed to do this of course.

bigger flocks per man power run over larger parks / areas .

Lorries and big ships transport is more fuel and resource efficient than little Ifor Williams trailers running around with 15 in.

don't shoot me, the messenger.

I think that about sums it up (y)
Also no sheds, no concrete, so no straw and no mucking out etc.
No idea whether the sums actually add up though.:unsure:
 

Pan mixer

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Near Colchester
Remembering the distant days of agri-economics 101, I distinctly recall that the UK (West of the A1 anyway) had a comparitive advantage for sheep production over the rest of the EU (or EEC as it was then)

We have cheap grass, a lot of which doesn't have much fertilizer as it is a bit steep, not enough soil to grow trees there.

Even on the East side of the country there is a lot of marsh land that can't be used for anything other than grass (I have a bit of it). My lambs do have a small amount of cake, housed in old buildings that haven't used carbon to build them for 60 years, a few bales of carbon neutral straw and silage. 15 miles to the abbatoir, 15 miles back to my shop, delivered within 5 miles to customers.

How can it be more sensible to import the stuff?
 

Hindsight

Member
Location
Lincolnshire
Remembering the distant days of agri-economics 101, I distinctly recall that the UK (West of the A1 anyway) had a comparitive advantage for sheep production over the rest of the EU (or EEC as it was then)

We have cheap grass, a lot of which doesn't have much fertilizer as it is a bit steep, not enough soil to grow trees there.

Even on the East side of the country there is a lot of marsh land that can't be used for anything other than grass (I have a bit of it). My lambs do have a small amount of cake, housed in old buildings that haven't used carbon to build them for 60 years, a few bales of carbon neutral straw and silage. 15 miles to the abbatoir, 15 miles back to my shop, delivered within 5 miles to customers.

How can it be more sensible to import the stuff?

Because the plan is to afforest vast tracts of the UK. Have to remove the current land use. Simples. Do not try to rationalise any comments, it will hurt your brain.
 

andybk

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Mendips Somerset
They work on their lambs doing quicker so killed quicker also no corn fed , less fuel requirement also if no or not much silage etc used .

Suitable genetics are needed to do this of course.

bigger flocks per man power run over larger parks / areas .

Lorries and big ships transport is more fuel and resource efficient than little Ifor Williams trailers running around with 15 in.

don't shoot me, the messenger.
uk uses a lot of grain to make up for poor genetics , but farmers still want big fat stock to show off to neighbours ,
 

Al R

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
West Wales
They work on their lambs doing quicker so killed quicker also no corn fed , less fuel requirement also if no or not much silage etc used .

Suitable genetics are needed to do this of course.

bigger flocks per man power run over larger parks / areas .

Lorries and big ships transport is more fuel and resource efficient than little Ifor Williams trailers running around with 15 in.

don't shoot me, the messenger.
That’s a huge assumption though 🤷🏻‍♂️ Certain farmers yes but not all….
That is one hell of a big brush to paint the industry with 👎🏼
I bet not all NZ farmers are the same and some will have indoor systems and feed etc, I know certain parts of Australia they feed the ewes and lambs all year, albeit due to drought but they may be better with goats in that situation?
 
I don't think we have to worry too much, Jacinda Arden is busy working away at destroying NZ agriculture and planting the whole country in pine trees so multinational companies can offset.

On a more serious note, I would not be at all surprised if NZ produced lamb is more carbon neutral, however, I think our politicians need to remember UK food security is vital, and Covid has shown us how weak theses long supply chains can be.

To my mind, we should encourage regenerative agricultural practices here in the UK, increase our vegetable production, stop building on both flood plains and good quality agricultural land. Count carbon sequestration in the benefits of animal production, as well as encourage local abattoirs to increase local food networks and resilience in the food chain. If doing all the above means we have to support farmers, I am happy with that. And if that still leaves space for imports, happy with that too.
 

Aussie Ben

Member
Mixed Farmer
That’s a huge assumption though 🤷🏻‍♂️ Certain farmers yes but not all….
That is one hell of a big brush to paint the industry with 👎🏼
I bet not all NZ farmers are the same and some will have indoor systems and feed etc, I know certain parts of Australia they feed the ewes and lambs all year, albeit due to drought but they may be better with goats in that situation?
Why would you keep sheep inside if they can live outside? There are loads of farms in converting to goats in the real scrub area's (goats were feral and blokes have started catching them and selling them. The stud goats business has gone mad as they are now buying Boer goat genetics into the breed with the ferals) but again the drought has meant a lot of farmers in 'good regions' had no feed. And I mean no feed and so if they could afford it feeding was the only solution
 

Al R

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
West Wales
Why would you keep sheep inside if they can live outside? There are loads of farms in converting to goats in the real scrub area's (goats were feral and blokes have started catching them and selling them. The stud goats business has gone mad as they are now buying Boer goat genetics into the breed with the ferals) but again the drought has meant a lot of farmers in 'good regions' had no feed. And I mean no feed and so if they could afford it feeding was the only solution
I’m well aware, I was just highlighting that people tend to use a very big brush to paint with.
 
a few years ago, Dunbia were coming round doing a questionnaire (for Sainsbury's) looking at the carbon cost of our lamb, seemed to stop, so don't know what ever became of it or where it was publicised. The inspector came a couple of times.
 

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Bury the Trash

Member
Mixed Farmer
what War time (and actually before) proved was that relying on overseas supplies might well be fine and dandy if they are not hindered in any way but if there's disruption to transport external politics etc , all heck can break loose.

The biggy for me though is the loss of home made employment and long held (and new ongoing ) skills base that would be lost with even not 100 % efficient home farm production iyswim. that would be such a huge and difficult to recover loss imo.
After all we are responsible for our own rural communities health and sustainability not those in NZ .
 

andybk

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Mendips Somerset
what War time (and actually before) proved was that relying on overseas supplies might well be fine and dandy if they are not hindered in any way but if there's disruption to transport external politics etc , all heck can break loose.

The biggy for me though is the loss of home made employment and long held (and new ongoing ) skills base that would be lost with even not 100 % efficient home farm production iyswim. that would be such a huge and difficult to recover loss .
not just food , just got truck back from MOT , garage said huge shortage of anything electronic mainly VW and merc , some parts 400% increase in price (if you can find them ) , apparently lack of silica mining during pandemic means loss of circuit boards , many parts stores now becoming exhausted , "there is a storm coming "!
 
what War time (and actually before) proved was that relying on overseas supplies might well be fine and dandy if they are not hindered in any way but if there's disruption to transport external politics etc , all heck can break loose.

The biggy for me though is the loss of home made employment and long held (and new ongoing ) skills base that would be lost with even not 100 % efficient home farm production iyswim. that would be such a huge and difficult to recover loss
After all we are responsible for our own rural communities not those in NZ .
And we need critical mass, to ensure infrastructure is there to support the farmers. Keeping animals in the East, you need vets who do large animals, marts, probably fencing contractors, silage contractors as well as farmers/farmworkers who like keeping animals. The same here in the west, many years ago, a lot of the farms grew some corn, but very hard to now without contractors with a combine willing to do small bits.
 

Lemken moves into slurry incorporation market

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Written by Justin Roberts from Agriland

Slurry application has moved forward tremendously over the past few years with the emphasis very much switching to using it as a resource rather than disposing of it as a waste product.

Even dyed in wool, tillage specialists such as Lemken are joining the movement with the company now offering what amounts to a conversion of their compact disc units to a slurry incorporation tool.

Lemken opt for Vogelsang heads​


This new product comprises a VogelSang slurry distribution head mounted on the frame of a set of Heliodor compact disc harrows.

Lemken claims that the Heliodor offers a sound basis for this type of application due to its...
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