Dairy farm­ing on a win­ning streak

Waipa Post - - The Country -

From be­ing named the best em­ploy­ers in the pri­mary sec­tor to sus­tain­abil­ity su­per­star, the dairy sec­tor is on a win­ning streak col­lect­ing a range of cov­eted awards in re­cent days.

DairyNZ’s gen­eral man­ager re­spon­si­ble dairy, Jenny Cameron, says dairy­ing has much to cel­e­brate these days, and it is grat­i­fy­ing that the good work is be­ing ac­knowl­edged.

“We are proud of all of our win­ners. They are up against hot com­pe­ti­tion in these awards which cel­e­brate not only busi­ness ex­per­tise, but also the ded­i­cated en­vi­ron­men­tal work be­ing car­ried out by so many.

“Dairy­ing has also fea­tured strongly as fi­nal­ists among the var­i­ous awards, and this is pleas­ing too.”

In the first-ever MPI AGMARDT Pri­mary In­dus­tries Good Em­ployer Awards dairy won the top award, the Min­is­ter of Agri­cul­ture’s award for Best Pri­mary Sec­tor Em­ploy­ers — and took out two fur­ther cat­e­gories.

Woodville dairy farm­ers Ben and Nicky Al­lomes were named the Best Pri­mary Sec­tor Em­ploy­ers.

The cou­ple, who own Hopelands Dairies, also won the In­no­va­tive Em­ploy­ment Prac­tices award.

“They have cre­atively solved the age-old prob­lem of work-life bal­ance by in­vest­ing in a ros­ter­ing sys­tem that al­lows their work­ers own­er­ship of when they work and what they do on the ground,” said Min­is­ter of Agri­cul­ture Damien O’Con­nor.”

“They have also shared this knowl­edge with their com­mu­nity.”

Ben is also a DairyNZ board di­rec­tor.

The Ma¯ori owned and op­er­ated Mi­raka dairy com­pany won the Ma¯ori Agribusi­ness cat­e­gory.

The MPI AGMARDT Pri­mary In­dus­tries Good Em­ployer Awards have been es­tab­lished to recog­nise ex­cep­tional em­ploy­ers across the dairy, seafood, forestry, and hor­ti­cul­ture sec­tors, which col­lec­tively em­ploy about 350,000 peo­ple — one in seven work­ing New Zealan­ders, and as many as one in three in some re­gions.

In this year’s NZI Sus­tain­able Busi­ness Awards, pre­sented re­cently in Auck­land, dairy won two cat­e­gories, and re­ceived the judges’ com­men­da­tion in a third.

Mata­mata dairy farmer and chair of the Dairy En­vi­ron­ment Lead­ers’ Fo­rum, Tracy Brown, claimed the Sus­tain­able Su­per­star award pre­sented to a per­son who in­spires and leads oth­ers to make a dif­fer­ence.

The judges said Tracy is a dairy farmer who has de­voted the past 17 years to mod­el­ling and pro­mot­ing sus­tain­able farm­ing.

“She set up her farm in a sus­tain­able way long be­fore it be­came main­stream…She is a hu­man dy­namo with great pas­sion, com­mit­ment and guts…Sus­tain­able dairy­ing isn’t just Tracy’s job, it’s her life”.

The Trans­form­ing Food cat­e­gory went to the or­ganic dairy farm Our Land of Milk and Honey, which also pro­duces honey, and has a mar­ket gar­den.

The farm is lo­cated in the foothills of Sanc­tu­ary Moun­tain Maun­gatau­tari Re­serve.

Judges said this or­ganic dairy farm is mod­el­ling a dif­fer­ent way of farm­ing. Its fo­cus is on car­bon re­duc­tion and the in­ter­face be­tween profit and en­vi­ron­men­tal mit­i­ga­tion. It shows that farm­ing can ben­e­fit the en­vi­ron­ment, com­mu­nity and econ­omy…”.

In the Ef­fi­ciency Cham­pion cat­e­gory the judges com­mended Fon­terra for its plant in Pahiatua.

The NZI Sus­tain­able Busi­ness Awards are New Zealand’s long­est-stand­ing sus­tain­abil­ity awards, es­tab­lished 16 years ago to recog­nise and cel­e­brate suc­cess in sus­tain­abil­ity.

Photo / Sup­plied

Sus­tain­able Su­per­star award recipent Tracy Brown of Mata­mata.

Photo / Sup­plied

Woodville dairy farmer Ben Al­lomes, and his wife Nicky, won Best Pri­mary Sec­tor Em­ploy­ers.

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