Lo­cal farm­ers named as fi­nal­ists

Matamata Chronicle - - Rural Delivery -

Sev­eral Mata­mata dairy farm­ers are fi­nal­ists in the 2015 Waikato Dairy In­dus­try Awards, with the win­ners an­nounced on March 6.

Two Mata­mata sharemilk­ers, in­clud­ing 50 per cent sharemilk­ers David and Lisa An­der­son, who milk 360 cows, and 21 per cent sharemilk­ers Chad and Jan Winke, who milk 630 cows, are Waikato Sharemilker/ Eq­uity Farmer of the Year fi­nal­ists.

Mark Fouhy and Denise Lup­ton, who con­tract milk 317 cows, are the only Mata­mata fi­nal­ists for the Waikato Farm Manager of the Year sec­tion.

As­tra-lee Bur­rows is the only Mata­mata fi­nal­ist in the Waikato Dairy Trainee of the Year sec­tion.

The DIA re­gional manager, Michelle McPher­son, said it has been an ex­cit­ing time as judges vis­ited the farms of the en­trants in the Waikato Sharemilker/ Eq­uity Farmer of the Year and Waikato Farm Manager of the Year com­pe­ti­tions.

‘‘ We’ve had some ex­cel­lent feed­back about this year’s group of en­trants and so we are con­fi­dent that the fi­nal­ists – and ul­ti­mately our win­ners – will rep­re­sent the re­gion strongly.’’

McPher­son said judges spent two hours on the sharemilker/ eq­uity farmer and farm manager en­trants’ farms, and a new team of judges will re­visit to un­der­take the fi­nals judg­ing.

‘‘The judges take a strong in­ter­est in how the en­trants are farm­ing the prop­er­ties to max­imise the re­sources avail­able and in a way that also helps them to meet their next farm­ing, per­sonal or busi­ness goal.’’

She said the dairy trainee judg­ing is a lit­tle dif­fer­ent, as the trainees all come to­gether to par­tic­i­pate in a prac­ti­cal skills’ test and take part in an in­di­vid­ual in­ter­view.

The Waikato re­gion re­ceived 50 en­tries in to­tal, in­clud­ing 10 com­pet­ing in the Waikato Sharemilker/Eq­uity Farmer of the Year, 12 en­tered in the Waikato Farm Manager of the Year and 28 en­tered in the Waikato Dairy Trainee of the Year com­pe­ti­tions.

The three Waikato ti­tle win­ners, an­nounced at a din­ner in Hamil­ton on March 6, will progress to the na­tional fi­nals to be held in Auck­land on May 2.

Tick­ets to the Waikato awards din­ner at the Claude­lands Event Cen­tre cost $85 and can be pur­chased on­line at www.dairyin­dus­tryawards.co.nz.

Photo: ABBY BROWN

FARM­ING FI­NAL­IST: As­tra-lee Bur­rows from Mata­mata is a Waikato Dairy Trainee of the Year fi­nal­ist.

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