Miscanthus is a plant that is being used increasingly throughout the world as a purpose-grown bioenergy crop as well as multiple uses in farming as a feed and for shelter.
Miscanthus New Zealand Limited (MNZ) was established in 2010 with the intention of developing a Miscanthus industry in New Zealand. It was started by Peter Brown, who came from a forestry background and is familiar with growing commercially useful plants that produce cellulosic material. Because Miscanthus does not produce any food, it does not fit comfortably in the conventional agricultural area of interest. But because it is not a tree, it also does not fit comfortably in the conventional forestry area of interest.
As a result, most potential growers of Miscanthus and most potential users of the harvested Miscanthus product remain ignorant of this plant and the commercial uses to which it can be put.
MNZ is a business that is actively working to establish a Miscanthus industry in New Zealand. There is no other company in New Zealand offering Miscanthus plants, rhizomes and expertise for sale. The opportunity now exists for innovative landowners to begin establishing this versatile crop. It can not only benefit them financially but also can help make New Zealand more energy efficient. At the same time, there is the opportunity for forward-thinking industrial plant owners to look to the future to fuel their businesses with a truly renewable fuel.
MNZ has been active in developing the plants and the techniques for growing them in New Zealand and has been researching various alternative end uses to decrease market risk for the grower. There are now a variety of end uses to which harvested Miscanthus can be put and the number of these is increasing as people become more aware of this unique product.
MNZ has been carrying out research on establishment and enhancement of the growth of Miscanthus. Lincoln University has pioneered several developments in this field while at the same time demonstrating the commercial benefits of growing Miscanthus for shelter on centre-pivot irrigated dairy farms.
In some areas, MNZ and Lincoln, together with a team of support organisations, are achieving results that are world first and which will transform the economics of growing and using Miscanthus.
Miscanthus NZ offers plant sales; sales of harvested product, processed to suit the customer’s requirements; and consulting services to farmers and feedstock users who wish to engage with a professional who has experience of growing Miscanthus in New Zealand. This will enable them to learn as much as possible about proper cultivation practices and / or utilisation of Miscanthus.