Letters to the editor – Feb 7

Letters to the editor – Feb 7

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See who's been writing to the Stock Journal this week.

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NO NEED FOR LONG-LIFE FRUIT

In response to Tom Adams, savvy consumers who have done years of research into the negative effects of eating genetically-modified food will never accept that adulterating food in order to increase shelf life, or have no seeds, is a good path to follow.

The longer fruit and vegetables sit on shelves in the supermarket, the less nutrition they will contain. In fact, the seeds in many fruits are the most nutritious part of the fruit, and many people eat them too.

Consumers have voiced their concerns about GM food for years and have made it abundantly clear that they don’t want it.

Going back to non-chemical, biodynamic principles is the only way to replenish spent soils and feed more people.

One can only wonder why what has been known for decades is being ignored. In my opinion, giant biotech has far too much influence and it is clear that patenting food crops and the subsequent huge profits to be made is the end game.

Alex Hodges,

Birdwood.

SIRE TRIAL RESULTS COMPLEX

While the article ‘Ridgway Advance sire tops evaluation’ (Stock Journal, December 20) was accurate in regard to the success of one sire progeny result in particular for measured and visual traits, it is very important for readers to recognise that such a trial acts as an information hub involving all facets of the Australian Merino.

As suggested at the conclusion of the article, Merino Superior Sires is an important website to capture full trial detail, but rural tabloids such as the Stock Journal need to be the bridge between the often informationless reader and the real deal involving more than just one result.

Ridgway Advance 150103 did have a very successful outing yet many other sire progeny results were outstanding across many measured and visual traits.

Malleetech Poll 155180, Hazeldean 13.4936 and Collinsville Poll 135111 all had progeny that excelled for fleece weight with all equally sliding in just 100 grams below the top result.

Behind Hazeldean 13.4936 for the finest trial progeny for micron, and only 0.3 micron away from that group’s average, was Flairdale 150078 and Gunallo Poll 14007. The range of micron across all 16 sire groups was a mere 1M.

Only 10 millimetres of staple length separated all groups with Mumblebone 130850 progeny having a 0.8mm advantage on Kelvale Poll 150120. Malleetech Poll 155180 had a slight edge on Greenfields 140345 for staple strength yet only by a minuscule 1.3 Newtons per kilotex.

Several sire groups excelled in meat and growth traits, with Hilton Heath 14Y447, Leahcim 152775, Poll Boonoke 150026, Ridgway Poll 140721, Malleetech 155180, Pepperwell 155227 and Ridgway Advance 150103 all copping a fair bit of highlight on the charts.

These objectively measured statistics are meaningless unless tied in with visual assessment, of which again many progeny groups hit their straps at the ‘blind’ trial classing.

Mumblebone 130850, Ridgway Advance 150103, Ridgway R721, Leahcim 152775, Kelvale 150120 and Collinsville 135111 were in the preferred quadrant on the excellent superior sire graphs indicating high tops/low culls.

It is important to remember that all stud entries are represented by one sire only, there is a substantial fee to be an entrant and there is no win/lose table. Trial results require a good study as to ascertain which traits from what sire you may require to boost certain areas.

I also suggest attending the trial field days which are essential in grasping all there is to know, accessing real-time trial data and acknowledging those important identities that make such events click.

Bill Walker,

Murray Bridge.

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