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Tuesday 26 September 2006
Three and a half months on, farmers in Mid and South Canterbury are close to
repairing the damage done to their farms by the June snowstorm, according to
the government agencies that have been assisting in the recovery.
Terry Donaldson is co-ordinator of the four MAF rural support offices set up
in Ashburton, Timaru, Waimate and Fairlie to assist Canterbury farmers overcome
the effects of the 12 June snow dump that covered much of the central South
He says requests from farmers for help from the MAF and Work and Income New
Zealand teams that have been assisting in the clear-up have dwindled.
"Farmers have fought back valiantly after the snow and done a
magnificent job to prepare their farms for the coming season. In many cases,
the Enhanced Task Force Green teams have backed them up and helped return farms
to a workable condition in time for the spring," Terry Donaldson
"While a number of farms still need some work, particularly around
Ashburton, it is anticipated that all the Enhanced Task Force Green work will
be completed by the end of October. In the meantime, requests for assistance
from farmers requiring support has all but ceased, and this Friday, 29
September, will be the final day for farmers to register if they still require
According to Terry Donaldson, several hundred farms have received
"In the main, farmers have coped exceptionally well with what was a
major storm that could have led to severe consequences. For those who have
struggled to deal with it, the farming community has rallied round. MAF and
Work and Income New Zealand have been able to step in when required. Farmers
have greatly appreciated that assistance.
"While some farmers will continue to bear the cost of the storm over
the next few months, that is in the nature of farming. So long as they have
been able to protect their productive base, which as far as we know has
generally been possible across all regions, they should now be in a position to
make the most of the growing season that is now under way," he said.
Further information contact:
Terry Donaldson, Tel: 0-3-358 1747 or 0-27-433 7127
John Greer, MAF Regional Team Leader, Tel: 0-3-358 1864 or 0-27-432 7692