March 26, 2013. Two areas on the west coast of the South Island were included in the list of regions of New Zealand affected by the drought, which continues to have a negative impact on the country's agriculture.
Drought New Zealand is recognized as the strongest in the last 40 years, and meteorologists predict that these conditions persist for at least another few weeks.
Local herders are forced to reduce the herd because of problems with feed and dairy producers stop producing milk.
The Minister of the mining industry, Nathan Guy said: "This very an unusual position for the West Coast, which has never been in drought conditions, and it is not something that are used by local farmers. Conditions have deteriorated very fast, and agricultural producers have asked the government to recognize the difficult situation they face, and to render all possible assistance. "
The price of feed for livestock increase, which causes the local ranchers begin liquidation of the herd.
However, in spite of the weather forecasts, the Federated Farmers of New Zealand (FFNZ) welcomed the announcement of the distribution of drought and reports of government support, which came after the notification of deteriorating weather conditions.
Katie Milne, provincial president of FFNZ on the west coast, says: "We are pleased that the authorities have recognized that our producers have now found themselves in very difficult situation. However, you must immediately stop all a myth in the bud. Farmers can not get cash from the government if they are not bankrupt, so any application for direct payments to farmers — this is not true. "
Concern for farmers is the fact that stocked for winter feed is almost used in the autumn, when the drought. Pastures are now in very poor condition that causes the growth of prices for feed grain. Compounding the situation breeders.
The good news is that the herd of calves is still quite large. To ensure a good start to the new season, farmers have to constantly monitor the health of the cows and to eliminate animals that lose weight.
Total damage from the drought is expected to reach 1.6 billion New Zealand dollars.