When people think of theft from farms their mind goes to cattle rustling and the wild west. Unfortunately this is still a big problem. It isn't just livestock which is stolen but also farm equipment, both of which can leave a small farmer desperate.

Today I read that 1500 geese were stolen in England. These were destined to end up as someones Christmas dinner, and I suspect they still will. For the farmer, the loss must be devastating, as it isn't just the loss of the revenue he would have generated from the sale of these birds but also all the money which has been spent rearing them. They are estimated to be worth £100,000.

I don't believe when a member of the public reads such stories, they get the full picture. They assume the loss is just the money he will lose from not selling the birds. The public doesn't realize the amount which is spent (time and money) on getting those ready for market.

Some big farms carry insurance to cover items and livestock from theft. How much more can we do to protect our livestock and farms?

We as farmers take a risk with livestock hoping when it comes time to sell, that the price will be strong and there will be no disaster such as illness affecting our stock.

Here on our farm in Brazil, we have had geese and we know the noise they make. I don't know how these thieves were able to steal so many without it causing a disturbance.

  • Farm insurance, farm theft, 
A Kansas judge has ruled that a class action suit against the Swiss company Syngenta, can go ahead. This is a blow for the major seed and chemical company who have their headquarters in Basel, Switzerland. The company disagrees with the district court's ruling and is considering an appeal.

Farmers in several corn growing areas across the US have come together to file a lawsuit against the company. The farmers, say their corn which was exported to China, was rejected due to the fact there were traces of Agrisure Viptera.

Although China has accepted genetically modified strains of corn before, this particular variety was not on the approval list and was not accepted resulting in the loss of revenue for many corn exporters, many of whom had not grown that particular strain of corn but which had still been rejected.

Besides the court ruling against them, the company has been in the news as concerns were raised over the sale of Syngenta to The  China National Chemical Corp. or ChemChina as it is called. The senator from Iowa, Chuck Grassley, whose state depends heavily on agriculture, is concerned that actions of the company may be hidden from US civil laws as a result of the purchase. The deal is set to go ahead once the EU has given its approval, currently it appears this will be in March.