1. R. F. Foster, Modern Ireland 1600-1972, Allen Lane Penguin Press, London, United Kingdom, 1988.

2. L. M. Cullen, The Formation of the Irish Economy, Mercier Press, Cork, Ireland, 1969.

3. C Woodham-Smith, The Great Hunger, Hamish Hamilton, London, United Kingdom, 1962.

4. F. S. L. Lyons, Ireland Since the Famine, Collins/Fontana, London, United Kingdom, 1975.

5. Agenda 2000, Implications for Ireland, Institute for European Affairs, Dublin, Ireland, 1999.

6. Department of Agriculture and Food, Annual Review and Outlook for Agriculture and the Food Industry, Dublin, Ireland, 1998.

7. R. A. Anderson, With Plunkett in Ireland: The Co-op Organiser's Story, Irish Academy Press, Dublin, Ireland, 1983.

8. I. P. A. Administration Year Book & Diary, Institute of Public Administration, Dublin, Ireland, 1999.

Michael Keane University College Cork Cork, Ireland


The characteristics of New Zealand and its economy, with special reference to food production and processing, will be discussed. The new science structures and funding are mentioned, and then some detail of food science and research providers is given.

New Zealand, with its nearest neighbor the continent of Australia, is located in the southwest Pacific Ocean. New Zealand consists of two main islands and is similar in size to Japan and to the UK. It is a diverse land, changing from subtropical in the far north to cool temperate in the south. The population of New Zealand is approximately 3.7 million (1996 census).

Seasons are opposite to the Northern Hemisphere, with January and February being the warmest months and July the coldest. The climate is temperate with averages from 8°C (46.4°F) in July to 17°C (62.6°F) in January, but summer temperatures occasionally reach the low 30s (mid 80s°F to low 90s°F) in many inland and eastern regions.

The mean average rainfall varies widely, from less than 400 mm (15.7 in.) in the lower central part of the South Island to over 12,000 mm (470 in.) in the Southern Alps— which form the backbone of the South Island. For most of the North Island and the northern South Island, the driest season is summer. However, for the west coast of the South Island and much of inland Canterbury, Otago, and Southland, winter is the driest season.

New Zealand is a food producing and exporting nation with food and beverage products comprising 48% of New Zealand's exports in 1998. Over the past 10 years there has been a decline in the earnings from unprocessed primary produce (particularly wool) and an increase in the earnings from processed products. The New Zealand economy is heavily dependent on overseas trade. Until the late 1980s New Zealand had an almost complete dependence on dairy, meat, and wool exports, but since that time increases in value of exports from forestry, fishing, horticulture, and the manufacturing industries have been very significant. Tourism has become a very important earner for the country.

The major trading partners that together account for about 70% of the country's exports are Australia, Japan, EC, the United States, Korea, and China (including Hong Kong). The EU has been the major market for food and beverage products, accounting for 28% of the value, but the patterns for different food items are very varied. North America is the primary market for beef, but Europe is the primary market for sheepmeat products. Milk powder is primarily targeted at Southeast Asia; butter and cheese at Europe, although North Asia is also a high importer of cheese; and more than half of the casein production is exported to North American markets. Fish and fish preparations markets tend to be in North Asia, although there are also significant markets in the North Americas.

Kiwifruit are the major earner in the horticultural sector, followed reasonably closely by apples and pears with vegetables third. The major markets for exported fruit are in Europe (58% of the value), whereas North Asia is more important for vegetables, accounting for some 35% of the export value. Australia is the largest market for fruit and vegetable preparations.

The value of totally processed primary produce is almost three times that of the unprocessed primary produce. Since the major contributors to the unprocessed primary produce are wood pulp and wool, it is obvious that most food products are in the processed primary products category.

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