April Updates

FWFP System April Updates

Just before Easter, QCONZ released a new version of the FWFP system, featuring some significant changes! All in all, we’re quite happy with progress based on our understanding of the regulations as they stand. When we have clarity from the Government regarding their  “light touch” comment, we’ll make a judgment call on what changes, if any, will need to be considered looking to the future. As a matter of interest, we did a quick ring around of some of our major industry customers last week and
the strong message for us was that FWFP is an important development for reporting sustainability progress to the market and for maintaining a social license to operate, so we’re pressing on.

The major changes in the latest release: 

  • Environment Canterbury Schedule 7 – a new system that allows actions to be tracked against Schedule 7 Objectives and Targets. This approach could be emulated for other Regions with similar (but different) requirements.
  • PDF report – ongoing improvements here, but some major changes that maximise the way maps are presented and some new logic to show the details of all mapped items.
  • Land Units – some significant changes here which make things a lot easier ie better editing and a simplified non-contiguous setup!
  • MAPS – we’ve switched from Landscape view to Square, allowing more space for maps as a result.
  • Summary Page – amazing how a new layout suddenly makes everything so much clearer! In case you don’t have a login, see an attached screenshot from our test farm!
  • Support and Guidance – is taking shape now with a digital manual, heaps of how-to guides, and video tutorials. Go to https://support.freshwaterfarmplan.nz and take a look. Let us know if you have any suggestions for additional guides. We would welcome any ideas!

We’ll continuing to push forward and have another busy month planned with some new reporting around Good Farming Practices. We have some good ideas developing around how we can present a simple, easy-to-read report for farmers showing their GFP (with some commentary and their relationships with planned actions). The Mobile App and Intensive Winter Grazing are not yet ready but, with the FWFP report (and additional reporting capability) looking sharp now, these developments will have our full attention.

New Summary page layout

Download print version of April updates.

FWFP development

February Updates

FWFP system February Updates

The team has been working hard behind the scenes to get the FreshWater Farm Plan tool ready for release.

Updates have been made to multiple pages in the FreshWater Farm Plan system to improve functionality and ease of use, and to align with MfE requirements.
The following pages have been updated:
• Enterprise / Farm details
• Cropping and Cultivation
• Cultural significance
• Risk Assessment
• Risk database
• Action form
• Summary

Two new sections have been added to the FreshWater Farm Plan report which includes ‘Cropping & Cultivation’ and ‘Nutrient’. Multiple section updates have been made also to improve content and functionality.
These sections include:
• Contents Page
• Risk Assessment
• Community and Catchment
• Land unit table
• Features – Waterways
• 5 Year Action Plan

FWFP development

How freshwater farm plans benefit farmers

Magazine Article - NZARM Broadsheet

An interesting article on Stuff on Freshwater Farm Plans and insights from Virginia Loughnan (MfE).

This article discusses Aotearoa New Zealand’s response to the environmental challenges faced by its freshwater systems. The Ministry for the Environment is introducing new freshwater regulations, including Freshwater Farm Plans, aimed at empowering farmers and growers to protect and improve water quality. These plans, part of the Essential Freshwater reforms, provide a flexible framework for around 35,000 farms, encouraging mitigations tailored to each farm’s unique context and fostering a positive environmental impact.

‘QCONZ’s Freshwater Farm Plan digital tool is well suited to support farmers and growers in developing their plans.’ – Josh Wheeler COO QCONZ 

Click here to view article

Magazine article – NZ ARM

Magazine Article - NZARM Broadsheet

Our COO, Josh Wheeler has written an article which appeared in the in NZARMs broadsheet issue 43 on our Freshwater Farm Plan digital tool (pg18).

This article talks about QCONZ’s dynamic evolution over the past five years, as it strategically positions itself to address the escalating importance of freshwater quality. From being appointed as the Nationwide Auditing body for the New Zealand Farm Assurance Program in the Meat and Wool Industry to developing bespoke FWFP software, the company’s comprehensive approach encompasses upskilling its audit team, aligning with freshwater regulations, and actively engaging farmers and growers in achieving water quality improvements.

View NZARMs Broadsheet 43 here


Fieldays, Mystery Creek FWFP Display

Fieldays, Mystery Creek FWFP Display

Freshwater Farm Plan (FWFP) software was showcased at the Fieldays.  

The product made it into the Innovation tent after a pre-selection as a finalist for the Innovations Awards.  FWFP software (in development) was entered into the ‘early stage’ category.  

This was an opportunity to discuss the industry and requirements and how our products fit as part of the massive suite of tools and services that NZ farmers are presented with. Verifies that we have a couple of unique and valuable products that are worthwhile for farmers. Additionally, it significantly raised our profile with other companies – they all know who we are and what we can offer. – Justin Moss.

Traditionally this event takes place in June, so foot traffic this year was noticeably lighter with milking in full swing paired with farm staff shortages.  What we lost in foot traffic however, was made up with some great B2B networking opportunities.

A big thank you to Gavin and our design team in Tauranga who delivered two great looking stands and the promotional literature to go with it.  Thank you also to the dedicated team who helped Josh and Justin showcase our software over the four days and help raise the profile of QCONZ.

QCONZ Freshwater Farm Plan system showcases at the NZARM Conference

QCONZ Freshwater Farm Plan system showcases at the NZARM Conference

QCONZ was thrilled to be a major sponsor of the New Zealand Association of Resource Management (NZARM) conference which took place between 17 -19 October in Wellington.

We joined the likes of (among others) DairyNZ, Manaaki Whenua (Landcare Research) and the Ministry for the Environment in our support of, and commitment to Environmental Sustainability.

Josh Wheeler, Murray Pedley and Tash Pivott attended and staffed the QCONZ stand and showcased the Freshwater Farm Plan system we are developing. This will be an affordable and user-friendly tool which will allow farmers and farm consultants to electronically build a farm plan to meet regulatory requirements and manage environmental risk on farm. Industry representatives showed great support for the system which we will be launching at the National Fieldays this year.

NZARM is a member-based organisation whose goal is to promote the philosophy, science, and practice of resource management in New Zealand, with particular emphasis on land and water resource management.

Click here to learn more visit https://nzarm.org.nz/