Best dairy farmers in NZ named

Ryan Boyd
Best dairy farmers in NZ named

The winners of the 2016 New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards have been announced, celebrating excellence in all levels of the dairy industry.

Held in Wellington on Saturday, 14 May, the big winners on the night, who shared prizes worth nearly $170,000, were:

  •     Mark and Jaime Arnold – 2016 New Zealand Share Farmers of the Year
  •     Thomas Chatfield – 2016 New Zealand Dairy Manager of the Year
  •     Nicholas Bailey – 2016 New Zealand Dairy Trainee of the Year

In addition to their Share Farmers of the Year award, Mark and Jaime Arnold were also recipients of the Westpac Business Performance Merit Award.

The Westpac Financial Management and Planning Award went to Lance and Mel Graves of Martinborough.

See below for full list of winners.

SEE ALSO: The dairy downturn: How long can banks stand behind farmers?

 

Share Farmer of the YearDIA Share Farmer Winners 2016

The 2016 New Zealand Share Farmer of the Year winners, Mark and Jaime Arnold, took a huge pay cut when they launched their dairy farming career eight years ago.

The former logging crew manager and teacher went on a single herd manager’s salary when they stepped onto a dairy farm for the first time.

“They chose to go dairy farming as they thought it would be a good lifestyle for their family and they had a long term view of their future in it,” Share Farmer head judge and DairyNZ Senior Consulting Officer Abby Scott says.

In winning the national title and $52,500 in cash and prizes, the couple demonstrated strengths in finance, business, and pasture management.

“The level of understanding they demonstrated in their financial presentation to us was very impressive. Their future growth plans are also impressive and they have a clear strategic plan of where they want to be and some clear goals.”

They have also analysed and completed budgets on more than 10 different progression opportunities.

“Doing this had helped them make the decision that they were better off to stay where they are and to look to land ownership or an equity partnership as their next step.”

 

Dairy Manager of the YearDIA Farm Manager Winner 2016

Judges are confident the 2016 New Zealand Dairy Manager of the Year, Thomas Chatfield, will go a long way in the industry.

“He enjoys what he is doing and has the attitude and personality that will take him where he wants to go,” Dairy Manager head judge and Westpac Agribusiness Manager Hamish Taylor says.

The 30 year old former physiotherapist is managing a 500 cow Whakatane farm owned by Bruce and Judy Woods and won $27,000 in prizes.

In 2013 he won the Bay of Plenty Dairy Trainee of the Year title in his first season in the dairy industry.

“Thomas showed and expressed opinions about the farming system he manages and is passionate about what he is doing. He is making a tangible difference to the business he is involved with and was engaged with the owner. He has a capable team working with him and was working with the team on a succession plan, should he move on.

“He can see massive opportunities in the dairy industry,” Mr Taylor says.

 

Dairy Trainee of the YearDIA Trainee Farmer Winner 2016

The 2016 New Zealand Dairy Trainee of the Year, Nicholas Bailey, is able to articulate ideas on some of the issues facing the industry.

“He stood out. He talked about wanting to get some consistency in employment standards across the industry in terms of rosters, in retaining staff and understanding what it takes.”

Head judge and Hawkes Bay dairy farmer Nikki Halford says he is mature and has a good balance of activities off the farm, including refereeing football and being active in young farmers.

The trainee competition is targeted at those aged 18 to 25 years with up to three years full-time experience in the industry. They can hold a qualification no higher than a NZQA Level 4.

“The entrants were all very even on paper,” Nikki says, “in terms of the length they have been in the industry and the roles and qualifications they all hold. They were all very similar, so the changes that have been made to the entry criteria are sussed and that was wonderful to see,”

The 21 year old Bailey won $10,500 in prizes and is second in command on Bryan Tucker’s 330ha Greytown farm milking 950 cows. It is the second time he has entered the awards and he plans to progress to a managing role.

He describes himself as a hard-working, outgoing and driven person that is willing to learn and likes to achieve positive results.

SEE ALSO: The dairy downturn: How long can banks stand behind farmers?

About the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards

The New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards attracts farmers from across the country, working in all levels of the dairy industry. The awards showcase and support passionate farmers of the future. The three competitions give entrants the chance to earn a regional or national title and to share in substantial regional and national prize pools.

The New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards are supported by national sponsors Westpac, DairyNZ, DeLaval, Ecolab, Federated Farmers, Fonterra Farm Source, Honda Motorcycles, LIC, Meridian Energy and Ravensdown, along with industry partner Primary ITO.

For more information, head to the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards website.

2016 New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards Full Results

2016 New Zealand Share Farmer of the Year

Winner – Mark & Jaime Arnold, Hawkes Bay/Wairarapa

Runner-up – Michael & Susie Woodward, Canterbury

Third – Callum & Hanna Stalker, Southland/Otago

 

Share Farmer of the Year - Merit Awards

DairyNZ Human Resources Award – Michael & Susie Woodward

Ecolab Farm Dairy Hygiene Award – Mark & Jaime Arnold

Federated Farmers Leadership Award – Michael & Susie Woodward

Fonterra Farm Source Interview Award – Matthew Herbert & Brad Markham

Honda Farm Safety and Health Award – Michael & Susie Woodward

LIC Recording and Productivity Award – Michael & Susie Woodward

Meridian Energy Farm Environment Award – Callum & Hanna Stalker

Ravensdown Pasture Performance Award – Mark & Jaime Arnold

Westpac Business Performance Award – Mark & Jaime Arnold

 

2016 New Zealand Dairy Manager of the Year

Winner – Thomas Chatfield, Bay of Plenty

Runner-up – Hamish Kilpatrick, Canterbury

Third – Lance Graves, Hawkes Bay/Wairarapa

 

Dairy Manager of the Year - Merit Awards

Dairy Manager of the Year Interview Award – Sam Howard

DairyNZ Employee Engagement Award – Thomas Chatfield

Meridian Energy Leadership Award – Renae Flett

Fonterra Farm Source Feed Management Award –Hamish Kilpatrick

DeLaval Livestock Management Award – Thomas Chatfield

Primary ITO Power Play Award – Thomas Chatfield

Fonterra Farm Source Farm Management Award – Matt Birchfield

Westpac Financial Management & Planning Award – Lance Graves

 

2016 New Zealand Dairy Trainee of the Year

Winner – Nicholas Bailey, Hawkes Bay/Wairarapa

Runner-up – Karl Wood, Manawatu

Third – Olivia Wade, Central Plateau

 

Dairy Trainee of the Year - Merit Award

DairyNZ Practical Skills Award – Karl Wood

SEE ALSO: The dairy downturn: How long can banks stand behind farmers?

 

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