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Economy boosted by dairy growth

SUE O'DOWD
Last updated 05:00 15/07/2014

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The Taranaki economy pocketed an estimated $1.44 billion from dairying in 2013-14 - or 10 per cent of the country's total from the industry, according to a DairyNZ survey.

The figure is nearly half a billion dollars higher than the previous season's figure of $1.04b and was generated by higher milksolids production and a higher payout.

Taranaki figures were fourth in the country - behind Waikato, which earned $3.8b, Canterbury with $2.77b and Southland with $1.72b. New Zealand earned about $14.3b from dairy farming in 2013-2014.

In the 2012-13 season Taranaki had 1017 dairy farm owners and 717 sharemilkers. A total of 4085 people, or 8.3 per cent of Taranaki's workforce, were employed in the dairy industry.

Each of the region's 490,528 cows contributed $2941 to the region's economy.

For each cow, farmers spent $1406 on feed, fertiliser, veterinary services, health products and dairy shed supplies.

DairyNZ chief executive Tim Mackle said the survey showed the industry contributed about 31 per cent more to the economy in 2013-14 than the previous year and injected much of it back into growth, farm spending and jobs.

By comparison, activity generated by the oil and gas industry contributed $1.8b to Taranaki region's gross domestic product and employed more than 4200 people, according to Venture Taranaki's latest figures released in 2010.

Venture Taranaki is now in the process of updating its contribution figures.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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