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New Zealand Journal of Forestry (2009) 54(1): 7–8
©New Zealand Institute of Forestry

Feature article
Commentary: changing places

Eric Pawson 1 and Harvey Perkins 2

1 Eric Pawson is Professor of Geography, University of Canterbury
2 Harvey Perkins is Professor of Human Geography, Lincoln University

There have been huge changes in the ways in which New Zealandís countryside and rural towns are used and understood. To give just a few examples, increasing numbers of urban people are no longer prepared to see rural irrigation schemes proceed uncontested when 80 per cent of New Zealandís allocated water already goes to agriculture. Fonterra, despite its dominance of the dairy industryís milk supply, considers it in its interest to encourage its shareholders to adhere to high standards of stream protection and landscaping. The national sheep flock continues to shrink, and many sheep farmers seem resigned to seeing wool as merely an unprofitable by-line of sheep meat production. But others, notably in the South Island high country, are gaining from a marketing revolution in merino adventure clothing or diversifying into a combination of jobs including those associated with wine production, multi-sport events, lifestyle real estate development, tourism and hospitality.
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