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Farming is challenging and unpredictable. That's why having the support – financially and holistically – is key. Here are several ways you can access guidance during the ups and downs. 

#1 The Farm Debt Mediation Scheme
Farmers under financial strain will have access to extra support and guidance from next month. The Farm Debt Mediation Scheme, which comes into play on 1 July, provides mediation services to help farmers and their creditors work through debt issues. This means farmers can expect a structured, confidential, and impartial negotiation process that leads to an agreement on how to proceed.
  • Creditors who lend money to farmers will have to offer mediation before taking enforcement action if farmers default on payments.
  • Business owners in agriculture, horticulture, aquaculture, apiculture and sharemilking can ask for mediation at any time.
#2 Stay well in your bubble
Unexpected challenges put pressure on your business and family, which is why it's so important to do the little things that keep you sane. Check out www.farmstrong.co.nz for farmer-to-farmer tips and videos (backed by well-being science) on stress, burnout, sleeping, healthy eating, thinking and more.

#3 Tax relief for Mycoplasma bovis farmers
The Government will be introducing legislation to help farmers whose herds were culled in response to the Mycoplasma eradication programme. It will allow you to spread additional income from the cull over the next six years, as long as:
  • the culling of your breeding livestock and your replacements were due to Mycoplasma bovis
  • you've used, and continue to use, the national standard cost scheme or the self-assessed cost scheme for your breeding stock
  • you've substantially replaced your culled livestock within 12 months.

The legislation is yet to go through Parliament but it will apply retrospectively, from the 2017/18 income year. For more information, head to Inland Revenue's website.

Disclaimer: The information in this article is of a general nature only, and is not intended to address specific circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Specific advice should be sought from qualified professionals prior to relying on any information received from this article.