11 Apr 2014

Saudi minister visits Massey university

1:54 pm on 11 April 2014

Saudi Arabia's move to secure food supply from abroad was part of the reason its agriculture minister toured Massey University this week.

Massey University hosted Fahd bin Abdul Rahman Balhunaim and 26 government officials.

Massey University's head of agriculture Peter Kemp said the Saudis are very interested in increasing their agricultural knowledge and are prioritising agricultural education.

And they're keen to learn what they can from Massey.

"One of their food strategies is to in a sense to buy farmland in other parts of the world, Africa etc, and develop that through their companies,'' he said.

''So they're looking for expertise in that area which Massey can obviously provide in how to run large-scale farm systems whether it's livestock or cropping.

''On the more intenstive side we do actually have expertise really in cow nutrition, cow welfare and veterininary disease control, you know all of those sorts of thing which are issues for them when they'be got intensive dairy production."