Once again, I seem to be needing to start my newsletter with a “who would believe the conditions!?” This season we have seen an almost unprecedented (certainly in my time at Opuha) swing in conditions from very wet to extremely dry in a very short time. This swift shift in conditions resulted in a very rapid increase in irrigation demand from virtually zero in early November up to near 100% four weeks later. This required some very special efforts from our Ops team to get the schemes up to full capacity in such a short time and presented some unforeseen challenges which I will explain later.
In this newsletter we provide an update on our storage situation and our recent operational challenges and advise of a very significant milestone in the Healthy Catchments Programme which we believe all shareholders need to be aware of. I’ve included some comment on water metering, flood flows and a request for your assistance as we head into the Xmas/New Year season. There’s some information on our new lake operating regime and we also have advice of some shares available for lease.
I expect this will be my last newsletter as I hand over to the incoming CEO, Andrew Mockford, on the 15th January. I will be around for a couple of weeks from the 15th as part of a handover process to Andrew.
On that basis I would like to wish you all the best for the Xmas and New Year period and onward into the season and seasons ahead. It has been an absolute pleasure and privilege to lead your cooperative over the last (nearly) seven years. We’ve achieved some good things and also faced some real challenges in that time. There is no doubt there are still plenty of challenges ahead for all of us – especially as we adjust to the changing regulatory, political and social environment in which we must operate. I am confident that Opuha has a good foundation (a single, united cooperative; a robust Farm Environment Plan programme; a very competent and informed Board and a very capable team headed by an enthusiastic CEO, to ensure the best outcomes for our shareholders.
To read this newsletter, please download the PDF version here:
171219 December 2017 newsletter