News & Events

Employment Opportunity: Biodynamics New Zealand Association Secretary

The Bio Dynamic Farming and Gardening Association (in N.Z.) Inc (Biodynamics New Zealand) is looking for an experienced secretary to administer the workings of the Association.  This is an exciting opportunity to join a community focused organisation. We are right in the vanguard of the organics movement in suggesting and promoting changes to agriculture to combat climate change. Biodynamics New Zealand is a diverse association that represents approximately 600 members from the farming and gardening community. It is the oldest organic growers association in New Zealand. As Association Secretary you will be responsible for the smooth running of Association activities.

The duties include attending General Meetings and writing the minutes of them, writing and collating an electronic newsletter to members, answering member queries, keeping the common seal of the Association, and carrying out such other tasks as the council shall decide. You will report to the Chair of the Biodynamics New Zealand Council.

This is a part-time contract position and initially we envisage a requirement of 20 hours work a week.

You will either be a member of Biodynamics New Zealand or will be willing to become a member. You must have good writing and communications skills; secretarial experience; be intensely engaged with the organic sector; be highly organised and have experience working with the voluntary sector.

If you’re interested in the position and would like to know more about what’s involved please contact Joanne Turner for a copy of the job description and to email your CV.

Rachel Pomeroy presents at International Biodynamic Conference, Switzerland

Photo: Rachel presenting in the Goetheanum. Slide features Hua Parakore / Te Waka Kai Ora indigenous verification principals. Photo Credit: Adriano Zago

The Annual International Conference of the Biodynamic movement was held last week from the 5th to 8th February 2020 at the Goetheanum, Dornach, Switzerland. Well known New Zealand biodynamic practitioner and teacher Rachel Pomeroy was asked to attend and gave three presentations.

Life Sketches are short lectures based on life, practice and projects. Rachel’s lecture discussed the following:

Universal Spirituality
Colonisation of India and New Zealand, in each case, virtually destroyed a complete, intact indigenous knowledge system.  A knowledge system which determined their practical life, from cultivating food, collecting healing plants, to navigating the mighty Pacific Ocean.  Rachel’s experience of biodynamic practice in both countries has helped her to see a universal world spirituality, existing in differing contexts of location, culture and religion. 

During the 3 day workshop, which was designed to deepen understanding and share experiences, Rachel joined with Marcela Vega Toy and Sundeep Kamath and presented the following:

Different spiritualities and biodynamic agriculture / Espiritualidades diferentes y agricultura biodinámica
Marcela Vega Toy & Sundeep Kamath & Rachel Pomeroy (English/Español) (s)
The Maori creation mythology, the sadness of the separation of heaven and earth, and our possibility, through practice of biodynamics, to turn sorrow to joy. The temple of the heavens reflected in the Wharenui, the meeting house, and, further, in the temple of our own body. In the context of these histories, experience “As above, so below”, macrocosm and microcosm and the role of the BD preps in facilitating the ordering forces of the Cosmos to order the life in our farm and garden. Maori astronomy and star-lore will help us understand and remember the ascending and descending periods of the moon and which farming activities to do in each period.  The summer and winter homes of the Sun help us know the seasons of the year, and the ascending and descending moon, and how they are used in timing agricultural practices. The Maori moon calendar, based on moon phases and tides and what can we learn from it. Jessica Hutchings’ characterisation of the six principles of traditional Maori food growing/collecting, and how she incorporated biodynamics into her own garden management. From India, the Navagraha, the nine planets, their plants, their arrangement in the temple in relation to the setting and rising horizons, dying and becoming. Shiva bringing the world into creation helps elucidate the role of planetary processes and BD preps in unfolding life. The circle of 27 Nakshstra star groups, or 12 Rasi (Zodiac constellations), as natural divisions of the 360 degree circuit of sun, moon and planets through the stars.  Sacred grove plantings of the 27 Nakshatra trees. The sacred cow, traditional fertility building recipes and practice, and how biodynamics is incorporated in practice.

A time each day was set aside for an Open Space section during which Rachel lead the following discussion:

The Biodynamic Preparations; their function in relation to Planetary Processes
The Biodynamic Preparations; their function in relation to Planetary Processes.  This is the question she lives with as a star watcher and prep maker.  Rachel shared her experiences and invited conversation with others.

Rachel Pomeroy will be presenting on similar topics at the 2020, 96th Annual Biodynamic New Zealand Conference, to be held in Akaroa, Otauhtahi, Christchurch this June.

Stay tuned for more information, speaker line up and registrations over the coming month.

Be part of the change for good

We’re on a mission to make the world a kinder, gentler, healthier place for the next generation.  We want to upgrade our website so we can offer more information and a better service to those looking to farm and garden the biodynamic way.

We’ve made a start and with your help we can move this project to the next level.  We’ve added e-commerce so you can have the convenience of on-line payments but there’s much more we could do. Donate now and watch this space as we add new features to the website.

As a charity we can provide a receipt for tax purposes, as long as you give us your details.

An Introduction to Biodynamics

Workshop being held on Friday, 26th April 2019 – 1.00 pm to 5.00 pm at Chaos Springs, 131 Deam Road, Waihi

Led by Rachel Pomeroy and Steve & Jenny Erickson

This is an introductory workshop for those interested in learning about this holistic form of farming and gardening.

Wondering what biodynamics is all about? Want to give it a try but don’t know where to start? Keen to develop or expand your growing skills and deepen your connection with the soil?

Find out more information about the workshop here.

Registrations close on 24 April. If you are interested in attending please contact the office on 06 306 8582 to see if there are any places still available.

2019 Conference Registrations Open

Don’t miss out – registrations open until 14th April.

The programme for the Conference has been finalised and registrations are now open for the 2019 Biodynamic Conference – Four Pillars of Future Agriculture. The programme includes experienced national and international speakers.

Find a copy of the programme for the conference here.

Further information about the speakers can be found here.

Registrations for the conference can be made here. Registration will be open until 14th April. Don’t miss out on a great weekend of information. Register now!

Conference 2019 – Four Pillars of Future Agriculture

The 2019 Biodynamic Conference will be held at Waitawheta Camp, Waihi from the 26th to 28th April 2019.

The programme for the conference is coming together and looks to be a thought-provoking weekend. As the title suggests, there will be discussions on three different modes of agriculture, and then how biodynamics can draw all of them together. The four pillars of future agriculture that we will look at are:

  • Mineral Balancing – William Albrecht’s work
  • Biological Management – Elaine Ingham’s work: Soil Food Web
  • Holistic Grazing – Alan Savory’s work
  • Biodynamics – Rudolf Steiner’s work

There will also be a farm visit and Steve & Jenny Erickson will kindly open up their farm for us to look at and discuss the differing parts of the property that make up the organism that is Chaos Springs.

The programme will be completed and registrations open in the next week or so. Any questions please contact the office.

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Conference Registrations Closing Soon

Conference registrations will be closing this weekend.  Don’t miss out on a wonderful opportunity to hear some great speakers.  Registrations can be made here.

Press Release – 2018 Biodynamic Conference

Press Release – 2018 Biodynamic Conference

Biodynamic agriculture is a way of living, working and relating to nature. Based on common sense practices, a consciousness of the uniqueness of each landscape, and the inner development of each practitioner. It provides a holistic, economical farming system, reducing our dependence on expensive and polluting mineral fertilisers and other chemical or synthetic inputs.

Based on the philosophies of Rudolf Steiner, biodynamics works in harmony with nature’s rhythms, improves the quality of the soil, strengthens the natural immunity of land, plants and animals and embraces the health of the environment.

The organizing committee for the Biodynamic Association’s Annual Conference are made up of members of The Otago Biodynamic Community, a discussion group – set up in 2013 and managed by Su Hoskin and Loran Verpillot. The group holds informal meetings to share ideas and knowledge, run workshops and seminars relating to organic and biodynamic land husbandry.

There is a growing movement of Biodynamic farmers in our region and we are excited to be hosting an event, which, hopes to attract more than a hundred attendees from all over New Zealand and beyond.

Each year different regions within New Zealand host the conference. This year Central Otago was chosen to showcase some of the countries most extreme climates and diverse terrain. The perfect backdrop for the theme – Water and Light.

Whilst central Otago is home to some of New Zealand’s most significant biodynamic wine producers, this is not a wine event. Although it is interesting that the wine industry has been the one to take the subject of biodynamics seriously. This might be due to the fact that the wines tend to have a vitality and vibrancy and are a more honest interpretation of the vineyards terroir.

The opening day will be held at The Orchard Gardens in Clyde on 22nd June and continue at the Rippon Hall, Wanaka on the 23rd and 24th to coincide with the Winter Solstice and Matariki celebrations.

The programme includes talks by leading biodynamic experts including a keynote presentation by Thea Maria Carlson from the Biodynamic Association in the United States. The weekend event includes workshops; farm visits, a banquet on the Saturday evening with local band Black Lagoon providing entertainment.

Locally owned and run Oasis Yurts will be accommodating our guest speakers in a unique lodge setting.

We are grateful to our generous sponsors including Ceres Organics, the Otago Community Trust, Eurofins, Commonsense Organics, Chaos Springs and BioGro.

Registrations and further details can be found at https://biodynamic.org.nz/news-events/our-sponsors-2018

We have three main goals for our conference. One of these is, as the Biodynamic Association mission states, to foster, guide and safeguard the biodynamic approach to agriculture, horticulture, forestry and animal husbandry in New Zealand. This involves nourishing, strengthening, and supporting our current biodynamic community.

Our second goal, however, is to use the conference to reach out to new individuals and groups who may be interested and offer them an opportunity to explore biodynamics in a friendly, open setting. This is one of the reasons we have an introductory workshop that will be held at Domaine Thomson Vineyard in Lowburn on the 21st June.

Our third goal is to support the growth and development of the wider food and social change movements. In light of this, our presenters and keynote speakers are not just biodynamic folk. Many people are seeking to align their lives, their farming and gardening practices and their food buying, cooking, and eating practices with a deeper understanding of the earth. In this regard, we see this conference as an important bridge-building event. We have learned from our previous conferences that this combination of goals and audience works very well together. It creates a dynamic mix of people and perspectives that builds a powerful sense of community.

The global biodynamic movement is growing both inside and out of the wine business. Herein lies your opportunity to immerse yourselves into one of our country’s unique wine growing regions, whilst taking in the breathtaking Alpine scenery and the spirit of its people during one of the most important seasonal and cultural festivals of the year.

Pre-Conference Workshop Registration Closed

All places have been booked and registration has now closed for the Pre-Conference Workshop being held on Thursday, 21st June.  We are sorry if you have missed out, but if you would like to go on a waiting list in case of cancellation please email info@biodynamic.org.nz.

2018 Conference Registrations Open

Water & Light – Biodynamic Conference 2018 sponsored by Ceres Organics

Registrations are now open for the 2018 biodynamic conference being held on 22 June in Clyde and 23-24 June in Wanaka.  The theme for the conference is Water & Light.  The programme includes experienced national and international biodynamic speakers .

Find a copy of the programme for the three days here.

Further information about the speakers can be found here.

Registrations for the conference can be made here.