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TAS Country : December 23rd 2010
4 Tasmanian Country Friday, December 24, 2010 2029332-101105 TASMANIAN ALKALOIDS Value Adding in Tasmania A nitrogen application followed by rain or irrigation could significantly increase your poppy crop returns News COMPETITIVE: Olivia Millhouse with Southwick Summers Eve at Riana. Picture: CHRIS KIDD Holstein specialist just bred to judge JENNIFER CRAWLEY There is so much more advantage with Holsteins because you get to choose genetics from around the world' NORTH West coast girl Olivia Millhouse has one goal in mind --- to win the national dairy cattle judging competition at the Royal Adelaide Show next year. Olivia, 25, has been around dairy cows since she could walk. Her first memory of a dairy cow was when dad Murray Millhouse let his four-year- old daughter enter her first calf rearing competition at the Huonville Show. Olivia won both the Tasmanian dairy junior judging award at the Devonport Show and the dairy handler competition at the Circular Head Show this year. She came second in the national dairy cattle judging competition at the Royal Melbourne Show this year. ''I'd like to come first in the nationals because I've come third and second so I would love to win it,'' Olivia said. Olivia's parents Murray and Leonie Millhouse run the Southwick Holstein stud at Riana and their four children run their own stud called Mill Rob. Olivia completed a judging course run by Holstein Youth last year where she had to judge, make comments and pass an exam. Judging is a very important part of breeding and the industry, Olivia said. ''I think it's an honour to be a judge,'' she said. The Millhouse family milk 250 cows and supply Cadbury. Olivia said she prefers Holsteins because of their ''diverse'' genetics. ''There is so much more advantage with Holsteins because you get to choose genetics from around the world,'' she said. She said Holstein nature varies between each cow family. ''Some cow families are quiet placid in nature and others are very independent,'' she said. Olivia does all the Millhouse breedplans, matchmaking the herd to sires. She works in financial planning during the week and helps out on the farm on the weekends, but dairy cows are never far from Olivia's mind. Silos give certainty to growers KAROLIN MacGREGOR THE Tasmanian Grain El- evators silo and bunker storage facilities at Pow- ranna have been sold to the state's grain grower com- pany Tasmanian Agricul- tural Producers. The storage facilities have been bought by TAP from Roberts Limited's Monds and Affleck div- ision which purchased Tasmanian Grain Elev- ators in 2006 for $9 million. TAP spokesman Ian MacKinnon said the pur- chase would give a much needed boost to the group's grain storage capacity and was good news for Tas- mania's cereal industry. ''We believe it's very positive for the grain in- dustry because it will give growers some surety that when they put a crop in, they will have somewhere to send it at harvest time,'' he said. ''We're doing this at the request of grain growers and most of the benefits will accrue at the farmer level. This will open up the grain industry and em- power growers to do some- thing about their future.'' TAP was established about four years ago and last year handled about 30,000 tonnes of grain or about a third of the state's cereal crop. TAP will have about 17,000 tonnes of capacity at Powranna, which includes the silo site and the bunker storages located near Tas- mania Feedlot. Mr MacKinnon said the purchase would boost TAP's storage capacity to about 25,000 tonnes. ''Storage has always been an issue for a lot of growers and selling off the harvester doesn't exist any more, so this will give growers another option,'' Mr MacKinnon said. ''It means we can guarantee supply and if we can't source grain locally we can bring other grain in to guarantee supply.'' The first loads of new season grain are expected to be delivered to the Pow- ranna storage facilities within the next two weeks. Rain takes cherry off the top KAROLIN MacGREGOR TASMANIAN cherry growers are counting the cost after rain though much of December ruined early crops. Some orchards, particu- larly in the state's north, now have limited fruit available for the tra- ditional pre-christmas rush. Paul Badcock, who oper- ates an orchard near La- trobe and supplies fruit to his business The Cherry Shed, said he had lost tonnes of cherries from his early variety trees after more than 150mm of rain during December. ''It is disappointing, but unfortunately that's just part of being a cherry grower,'' he said. ''It has decimated the early fruit, but the stuff we're picking now seems pretty good.'' However, Mr Badcock said a lighter than average early cherry crop meant losses were not as big as they could have been if crops were at normal levels. Mr Badcock said de- mand for cherries before christmas generally out- stripped supply. ''Down here it's not the ideal climate to produce cherries before Christmas because we can get these wet Decembers,'' he said. Mr Badcock started sell- ing fresh cherries this week at The Cherry Shed and said his customers were pleased with the fruit so far. ''What we need now is some nice fine and warm weather without any rain.'' Darren Broadby from Perfecta Produce at Ulver- stone agrees it has been a challenging season so far. ''We've been fairly beaten up at the moment, but we're working through it,'' he said. Mr Broadby said it was the wettest start to the cherry season he had seen for many years. Despite the wet weather Mr Broadby said he was still hopeful of a reasonable season. ''It hasn't been good start, but it could still turn out to be OK,'' he said. ''What we need now is the rain to stop and some fine weather.'' Mr Broadby said while there was strong local de- mand at the farm gate for cherries before Christmas, the bulk of the crop would harvested in January. 2003373-52 Best wishes to all for a safe and happy Christmas and successful harvest of all crops in the New Year
December 16th 2010
January 6th 2011