Sean Connolly is a hard one to catch these days the man does run four restaurants, after all. While hopping between his family home of Sydney, Australia and Auckland, New Zealand to manage things, he recently took a side trip to Queenstown and added star power to the SKYCITY Gibbston Wine & Food Festival.
Supply management, a sensible regulated system where domestic supply is governed by domestic demand, is under attack from critics who are uninformed about its usefulness and effectiveness for producers, processors and consumers. In short, they suggest it must be sacrificed on the altar of the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations if Canada wants to be inside that grouping which, they all assume, would benefit the country.
Under the NZ system, milk prices are much higher than they are in Canada. They pay more than C$6 for the equivalent of 4 litres of milk. At my local supermarket, I pay C$3.99 and have for months. In the recent past a commission was struck by the NZ parliament to investigate the high price of dairy products. Do we want that in Canada? I don't think so.
Now, unless you've been living under a rock, you know New Zealand is ground zero for LOTR fans. Roughly seven hours of driving from Wellington (two from Auckland) will get you to Matamata. This rural town transitions to Middle Earth on sections of a bucolic 1,250-acre sheep farm that has been turned into a permanent attraction.
One of my favourite shows this summer has been Bear Grylls "Get Out Alive". Bear is a British adventurer, ex SAS member and youngest ever Chief Scout. In "Get Out Alive", Bear took ten teams of two to New Zealand. There, they had to endure many physical and mental tests, including being dropped into a freezing lake from a helicopter, crossing a gorge on a rope, traversing a glacier full of crevasses, building a raft and riding it down a raging river. The winning team collected $500,000.
Paying less for drugs sounds like a good idea, right? Well, as with everything else, one needs to look at the whole picture and see what he gets in return. With regards to bulk purchasing, although there might be some savings initially, it is clear that the long-term disadvantages of such a policy outweigh its short-term benefits.
A conference was held a few weeks ago in Ottawa to discuss yet again the adoption of a pan-Canadian government-run drug insurance plan that would cover prescription drug costs for the entire population. Such a program would instead risk increasing the burden currently weighing down public finances. Such a plan would not only entail extra costs for taxpayers, but would do nothing to change governments' current propensity to restrict and delay access to new drugs. Foreign experience can teach us much about the dangers of adopting a monopolistic drug insurance system in Canada.
Viewing wild animals in a native habitat, especially in far-away New Zealand, is an adventure in itself. However, many travelers take the opportunity to elevate the experience by facing animal encounters in the wild or in special preserves. Here are five exciting animal encounter itineraries that visitors to New Zealand can experience...