Thailand – Dairy Development Training Programme

Date: November 10, 2023

In late October Chris Leach led an MPI dairy development training programme for farmers and extension officers in Pak Chong, Thailand. Pak Chong is the central region of Thailand, approximately a 2 ½ hour drive north of Bangkok, and is at the centre of the developing Thai Dairy Industry. 

Having helped host a visiting group of Thai farmers here in New Zealand in 2018 Chris visited Thailand in 2019, then the project was temporarily derailed by COVID. During the intervening years, the team maintained contact delivering monthly webinars on topics ranging from milk quality to reproduction, nutrition and extension mechanisms.   

 “This visit provided us with the opportunity to reconnect face to face and to deliver some ‘Kiwi style’ classroom, and practical skills training to approximately 35 learners plus an additional 30+ extension officers and scientists who joined morning classroom sessions via video link,” comments Chris. 

This was a great opportunity to demonstrate some alternative training approaches involving group work, post-it sessions, and Kahoot quizzes in the classroom. Followed up with on-farm practical sessions in the afternoons. The topics ranged from basic reproduction, heat detection, feed evaluation and ration formulation, calf rearing, and growing young stock. 

The training programme brought together a dynamic and diverse team including Chris Leach, Jane Kay (DairyNZ Nutritionist), Grant Rudman (Fonterra Sustainability Team Manager), Pete Morgan (Farmer and trainer), and Garry Udy (MPI). They received a great reception from the attendees, who warmed to the novel approaches

Other news

After an impressive 25-year’s, Murray Pedley, QCONZ’s Major Shareholder, Director, former Board Chair and CEO, has retired.

Murray had the privilege of attending the New Zealand Roundtable for Sustainable Beef’s annual conference and AGM in Christchurch in May.

Justin Moss and Josh Wheeler from QCONZ took a trip to Parliament in May to meet with Hon. Andrew Hoggard to discuss Freshwater Farm Plans (FWFPs). We were excited to share our learnings from the past few years.

Big news for New Zealand farmers! QCONZ is excited to share our new FreshWater Farm Plan Tool. It’s a digital helper that makes it easy for farmers to create their freshwater farm plans quickly.

We were thrilled to be a major sponsor of the New Zealand Association of Resource Management (NZARM) conference held in Christchurch in October.

We flew the QCONZ flag again this year at the annual Red Meat Sector Conference, jointly hosted by the Meat Industry Association and Beef + Lamb New Zealand Ltd.

As of 1 October, the QCONZ team will be delivering audits for the New Zealand Farm Assurance Programme (NZFAP). We have been working hard behind the scenes to get systems and processes in place, and from August farmers can expect to start hearing from us regarding audit bookings.

QCONZ proudly sponsored the Milk Quality Conference in Hamilton on the 4th and 5th July. Attended by 125, this was a great opportunity for engagement and collaboration between industry and service providers in the Dairy sector.

In June, the QCONZ team gathered in Hamilton for our biennial staff conference. We had a great time bringing our team together from all corners of New Zealand to celebrate, connect, and have fun! Day one of the conference kicked off with a business update and group sessions where each business unit shared recent work

QCONZ was proud to be a sponsor of the recent Central Plateau and BOP Dairy Industry Awards, where we celebrated the successes of local farmers and connected with future industry leaders.