A personal review of the contribution of farm systems research to New Zealand pastoral agriculture. Case studies have been selected from the author’s experience in sheep, dairy beef and dairy cow research over the past 40 years. These are used to emphasise the importance of progress in agricultural science and of wider societal concerns. The change in emphasis over time for farm systems research, from animal production per se, to production and profit, and now to production, profit and environmental protection is highlighted. Examples are also given of the value of thinking in a systems context in order to maximise the value of investment in basic and applied agricultural research.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 73, Hamilton, 54-64, 2013
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