The Coalition Government and the primary sector will work together to boost the science behind the valuable Overseer farm management tool, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Environment Minister David Parker announced in a Budget press statement.
Overseer is a tool used by a range of primary industries and regional councils to help measure nutrient use and greenhouse gas emissions.
“Well-used, it can assist farmers to minimise waste and maximise profits,” says Mr O’Connor.
The Budget includes an investment of $5 million of operating funding over the next four years to enhance it.
The extra funding for Overseer will enable:
• quicker adoption of environmentally friendly farm practices
• the inclusion of a wider range of land types and farming systems
• a more user-friendly interface.
“All farmers and growers want to keep their fertilisers on their paddocks and crops, and they want the best tools to manage their environmental responsibilities,” Mr O’Connor says.
Mr Parker says the extra funding in the Budget opens up opportunities for farmers to trial new technologies, techniques and tools that would otherwise be too risky or expensive to try.
“We need practical, science-backed tools to achieve this Government’s goals to improve land use, achieve a net-zero-emissions economy by 2050, and help clean up our rivers so our kids can swim in them without getting crook.”
The Ministry for Primary Industries, AgResearch and the Fertiliser Association of New Zealand each hold one-third stakes in the Overseer intellectual property.