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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 69

Frozen Meat

Frozen Meat.

Dr. Newman, M.H.R., for Thorndon, writes:—"What must strike every student is this country's wonderful power of adapting herself instantly (sic) to suit the ever-varying tides of the ever-varying foreign marts. When wheat suddenly ruled high in London our farmers quickly increased the yield. . . . . . .Oats were in moderate supply; prices abroad jumped up, and next harvest farmers garnered three times the quantity. 30,000,000 feet of hewn timber were exported; prices tended upward, and the amount swelled to 43,000,000 feet. . . . . . Indeed, the most hopeful feature of New Zealand's future is the wonderful elasticity of her resources. Show her people a profit on any single article, and, to use an Americanism, 'they jump at it baldheaded.' This quickness of response, this great capability of soil and climate, constitutes a lasting rock of prosperity."

When dealing with the wonderful increase and development of the trade in frozen meat the above extract came to recollection, with the further statement of the same writer that "Formerly run holders looked to sheen to yield a wool-clip once a year only; now they reap another harvest once every month in the year, by freezing so many that in a year one-third of the whole flock, on a good run, will go through the slaughter-yards.

So rapid has been the development of the trade in its short career that no excuse is needed for quoting the official figures in fall of the quantity exported and its declared value:—
Quantity in cwts. Value.
1882 15,244 £19,339
1883 87,975 118,238
1884 254,069 345,090
1885 296,473 373,857
1886 346,055 427,193
1887 402,107 455,870
1888 552,298 628,800