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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 60

New Industries, Coal, and Gold Mining

New Industries, Coal, and Gold Mining,

One of the most pleasant experiences of your Committee during their year of office was that which brought prominently before them the great number of manufacturing industries now in existence, while assisting to promote their representation at the New Zealand Exhibition. It would be impossible, in the time now at my disposal, to attempt to describe these manufactures, but when I say that exhibits of great value and importance have been entered page 21 from 125 manufacturers, and that these probably represent only a small portion of the factories in existence, you will understand that there is vitality in this branch of trade. Our sugar-refining and meat-preserving works I have already referred to. Tobacco growing and cigar manufacturing appear to have proved a success. Mr. Walsh informs me that 80 acres of tobacco have been grown last season, yielding in some cases half-a-ton to the acre. Mr. Vollbracht estimates next season's planting at 200 acres. The lesson of industry formerly taught us by the bees is now taught by the bee-keepers. Mr. Hayr informs us that 80 tons of honey are produced this year; that it is a growing industry, and has encouraged along with it an extensive manufacture of bee-keepers' requisites. Biscuits, doors and sashes, canned fruit, pottery, sauces, cement, furniture, cheese, flax, rope, iron-smelting, ironwork, fish-curing, leather, boots, saddlery, marble-work, coach-building-work may just be mentioned as amongst the exhibits. It is of the highest importance to know that for such manufactures as depend on a supply of cheap coal the output of our local mines is rapidly and steadily increasing, the total output being shown to be 106,000 tons for the past year. Our gold fields during the same twelve months produced 39,484ozs. valued at £156,633, but it is confidently expected that by improved methods of gold saving now being introduced, and by the opening of new mines that an increased yield will be shown for the current year.