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03 217 4445
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Southland's home of quality
fabrics, haberdashery, patterns
& knitting wool.
not more cows
What: AgFirst -- a new agricultural
consultancy business in Southland.
How: Providing new technology for
Who: Chris Crossley 027 706 5261
Event: AgFirst client day, at Winton
Golf Club, today from 11am till
Farm plan: AgFirst's new Winton-based dairy consultant Chris Crossley, out and about in Southland aiming to get
the most out of farm businesses around the province.
Photo: MARY WITSEY
One of the country's largest agricult-
ural consultancy businesses has just
opened a branch in Southland on the
back of continuing growth in the
province's dairy sector.
AgFirst managing director James
Allen, of Waikato, said that they saw
the potential in Southland and
wanted to be a part of it.
''We're hugely confident about the
dairy sector down there, with
Southland establishing itself as one
of the key dairy producing regions in
''We saw the growth and develop-
ment, and decided it was an area we
needed to be involved in. There are
exciting times ahead.''
AgFirst's new Southland consultant
Chris Crossley, who is based in
Winton, said the business had
already managed to establish a good
''I've been very well received in
Southland and I think that's because
we're offering something different.''
Mr Crossley has had more than 25
years' experience in agriculture and
said the use of technology, as part of
the consultancy plan, helped create
efficiencies within the farm busi-
''I don't want us to be doing more of
the same. There're smarter ways of
doing things using technology to
help improve farm outcomes, boost-
ing production and profitability.''
AgFirst used a farm modelling
system called Farmax, he said.
''It allows you to put a plan in place
for the whole season and monitor it
on a monthly basis.
''There's been a lack of good
technological decision-making tools
on the market -- now we have one
and I wouldn't be talking to farmers
about it if I didn't believe in it.''
Mr Crossly agreed that dairy
farming would continue to grow in
However, he said environmental
restrictions would mean production
gains would need to come from a
more efficient utilisation of
resources, rather than by increasing
''That's where this system comes
into play. It means farmers can
undertake robust analysis of their
options on-farm and make those fine-
tuning decisions earlier.''
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