Letters to the editor - Dec 5

Letters to the editor - Dec 5

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Farm theft, Landmark's name change and the 100GL water deal had our readers fired up this week.

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AGREEMENT TO GROW FODDER IN SUMMER POORLY TIMED

Recent reports that 100 gigalitres of Murray-Darling Basin water will be released for growing fodder are welcome, but betray a serious problem with the lack of timeliness of our response to drought.

The 100GL has been forecast to grow only about 120,000 tonnes of fodder. This is way below par, in significant part because growing fodder crops in the warmer months requires so much more water for the same production.

Using the sort of fast-growing annual legumes that we specialise in breeding, that amount of water used across the autumn/winter/spring period, even with no additional rainfall, could be expected to grow at least three times as much fodder.

Furthermore, by far the best time to grow fodder is before it is needed, not after.

Then, even if that fodder is not immediately required to keep breeding stock alive, the excess can be used to grow and fatten stock for market.

In summary and in contrast to the present reactive approach, policy-makers and industry need to be proactive in addressing the issues of drought, which whether or not there is any climate change link, appears to be an increasing challenge to our agriculture.

In that light, would it be too much to expect to see at least some water in future years being allocated to growing such fodder crops during the cooler months, instead of only reacting to the fodder shortage after it is all too late?

Andrew Lake,

Pristine Forage Technologies, Edwardstown.

CRIMINALS, NOT OWNERS, RESPONSIBLE FOR THEFT

After reading Tom Marland's viewpoint ('Climate change does not create bushfires', Stock Journal, November 14), I was concerned by one of the comments made.

While I agree with his point regarding climate change, I certainly would not agree with the point he makes about how if you leave your front door unlocked, you cannot complain too loudly when someone steals your television.

Having been in the livestock industry for 50 years, and having seen the producer robbed of his stock, does this mean if the producer does not lock every gate on his or her property, and someone steals 10 or 15 lambs, or 10 or a dozen cattle, they should not complain too loudly?

Does this mean that if the perpetrator is caught and the matter goes to court, the thief will get a lesser sentence if the gate is not locked?

In the case of a homeowner, would the same result apply if a door happens to be left unlocked?

Does this mean that if I am working in my backyard and a thief comes through the front door, or if I am working in the front yard and the thief comes through the back door, I should not complain?

Is the thought that every time I go out of my house, I have to lock all doors?

I believe I have every cause to complain bitterly if someone enters my house without invitation, and that person should be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.

Kevin Vanstone,

Grange.

LANDMARK BRAND GONE IN YET ANOTHER NAME CHANGE

They say the golden rule is that he who has the gold makes the rules.

After having more company name changes than Elizabeth Taylor since I joined SA Farmers Union in 1966, I see that the company I left in 2009, Landmark Rural, commonly referred to as Landmark, will no longer exist.

The North American owners want their shareholders to know of their Australian operations, meaning that their Australian clients have to learn a new name for who they do business with.

Bill Hecker,

Forestville.

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