This week on The Best of The Country, Jamie Mackay catches up with Blake Holgate for a chat about the Emissions Trading Scheme, and Damien O'Connor comes to rodeo's defence.

This week's top interviews are:

Sir John Key:

The former PM is our 'Aucklander of the Day' as we ponder the risks to farming in 2019 from increased bank funding costs, trade wars, Brexit and Donald Trump.

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Helen Beattie:

The New Zealand Veterinary Association's chief veterinary officer tackles the contentious animal cruelty issues associated with rodeos.

Damien O'Connor:

The Minister of Agriculture kicks off 2019 with comments on animal cruelty and rodeos, food sabotage, the sustainability of the Taratahi and Telford agricultural training institutions and whether Simon Bridges will see out 2019, as the shadow of Judith Collins looms.

Blake Holgate:

Rabobank's Sustainability Analyst discusses a podcast he recorded on the complex issues of carbon farming and carbon credits and why farmers and foresters should consider opting into the Emissions Trading Scheme.

Miles Hurrell:

Fonterra's interim chief executive comments on a great GDT auction result overnight (+4.2 per cent) and about what promises to be a watershed year for the cooperative under its new leadership regime.

Winston Peters:

The Deputy PM and New Zealand First leader joins us for the first time in 2019 to discuss Brexit and the prospects of a capital gains tax.

Listen below: