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Who Is NZ's Top Dairy Farming Team?

June 18, 2002

New Zealand's top dairy farming team will be announced at a gala presentation in Hamilton on June 29.

That's when eight months of planning, collecting entries, regional eliminations, farm field days and final judging come to a head with the announcement of the WestpacTrust NZMP Farmer of the Year for 2002.

The eight regional winners have been found and judging for the finals is underway as each of the finalists goes through the adjudication process for the final time.

The three national judges - Alvin Reid of Temuka, Bruce Thorrold from Hamilton and Mark Wisnewski of Whangarei - are visiting the finalists' farms and scrutinising their business operations. Each judging process takes some three-and-a-half hours.

The finalists are evaluated on their business performance, human resources, dairy management, product excellence and environmental integrity and individual performance awards will be made in these categories.

Elements under the microscope in the Pioneer Brand Forage Products business performance award include key performance indicators such as economic farm surplus, return on capital, financial planning and management.

In the Dexcel Human Resources award personal goals and development, communication skills, staff management and productivity are considered.

Profitable and sustainable use of physical resources and animal husbandry are key considerations in the Ballance Agri-Nutrients Dairy Management Award.

Product quality management for milk, meat and the live animal is the focus for the Ecolab Product Excellence Award.

In the RD1 Environmental Integrity award water quality, effluent and nutrient management and environmental initiatives are considered.

"It's been a tough row to hoe for the eight finalists," says Award Chairman Gerard Lynch. "Entrants have spent many months of 'homework' and planning and the team that takes away the major honours will be thoroughly-deserving recipients of the WestpacTrust NZMP Farmer of the Year title for 2002."

The full list of finalists is:
Northland Jo & Geoff Crawford from Whangarei
North West Waikato Paul & Sue Bardoul of Ohaupo
Hauraki/Piako Mike & Lynda Randrup from Tirau
Bay of Plenty/South Waikato Mark & Sophie Dibley from Ngongotaha near Rotorua
Taranaki David & Lois Werder of Patea
Lower North Island David & Gladys Hunt from Takapau in Hawkes Bay
Northern South Island Richard & Chrissie Wright of Ashburton
Southern South Island Lloyd & Kathy McCallum from Winton in Southland

All of the finalists have recently held very successful field days on their farms with some events attracting crowds of several hundred.

"As the nation's premier farming award," says WestpacTrust general manager business Julian Nalepa, "the key goal of the competition has been to promote dairy farming excellence by identifying farm enterprises which are achieving greatness in all areas of their business.

"The eight finalists are among the best in the industry and set a benchmark for dairy farmers."

The WestpacTrust NZMP Farmer of the Year award has a total prize pool of $300,000. The national winner receives a $50,000 Holden 4x4, travel to the value of $10,000 and $15,000 cash.


Issued by Pead PR on behalf WestpacTrust NZMP Farmer of the Year.

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