Free samples of value added dairy products
Free samples of value added dairy products
Well, it’s raining – and our dairy has turned into a ‘leaky building’. But, it’s only dripping on us and not the products or the punters, so all’s good.

Yesterday was busy – a sunny day combined with great free products and drawings by renowned cartoonist Malcolm Evans drew in over 1000 people to our site.

I managed to get away for a few minutes to watch the souped-up tractor racing. I have to admit that I find that stuff thrilling. And in a thoughtful moment I realised that although I’ve travelled and worked for Greenpeace in amazing places, from as far afield as Mexico and Indonesia, being here at the fieldays would have to be near the top of my list of most memorable Greenpeace moments.

Weird you might think but, for four years, I’ve dreamt of taking the Greenpeace message to the rural heartland – and the fieldays event is exactly that.

Our message about tried and true branded products being better for the climate and for farmers’ bottom lines is resonating well. People are stopping to chat, Sign On to our climate petition and to take a copy of our hugely popular newspaper Better Times.

I spent a bit of time talking with the owner of Biofarm Yoghurt, Cathy Tait-Jamieson, yesterday. She kindly gifted us 200 litres of their organic product to give away here at the fieldays.

I explained why we came to her for product – it’s available in supermarkets, it’s organic and it’s a quality brand.

Cathy told me about the enterprise and I realised, that from the soil to the store, every step of their business is truly sustainable.

“The land we farm is cared for in the same way our grandfathers did it. We look after our land and our animals. I do the milking and my husband makes the product – we’re farmers that add value to our milk and, in turn, provide quality kai to New Zealanders.”

And they’ve done this for decades – in 1986 they converted their 500 acre farm to an organic and bio-diverse business. It’s grown ever since – as Cathy says “sustainable means brand loyalty”.

Her message is in a similar vein as ours.

“If NZ doesn’t hook into the consumer products we’re going to be left as the low value producer of faceless commodities – people that have the money to spend won’t be buying our stuff. Commodity means cheap – each step from paddock to plate has negative impacts on the environment, to people and our economy.”

Quality is obviously where it’s at.