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Moerangi Station Wins Supreme Award

April 6

Moerangi Station Wins Supreme Award

Moerangi Station, owned by Maori trust, the Puketapu 3A Incorporation, has been named Supreme Award Winner in the 2006 Ballance Farm Environment Awards announced in Hamilton on April 5.

The Station also won the PGG Wrightson Habitat Improvement, PPCS Livestock Farm, Rabobank Land & Life and Ballance Nutrient Management Awards

Award judges noted the professional team approach taken at the Station located in the Kuratau River Valley between Turangi, Taumarunui and National Park.

Combining profitable farming with effective long-term stewardship of the land is the task overseen by managers Barry and Celia Pope, and the trust management board led by Jim Hoko.

It’s a job the award judges agree is being exceptionally well done, especially given the constraints of climate, soil quality, care of the Lake Taupo catchment and multiple ownership.

Barry Pope is passionate about the place, and the challenge of running it well.

“This is a particularly nice property,” says Mr Pope who in his farming career has lived and worked on ‘at least 10’ other farms.

“With the amount of bush spread round it, it’s more like a farm park than a farm.”

The total fenced area on Moerangi is 3877ha; the effective area to farm is 2150ha.

It’s a many-faceted operation, running sheep, beef, deer and goats.
Wintered stock numbers last year were as follows; 13,609 sheep, 1184 cattle, 1888 deer and 452 (meat) goats.

A small hydroelectric plant is on the farm supplying power to four properties and any surplus to the national grid. Another is planned utilising a second waterfall on the farm, and, Barry wryly points out, “what we learned the long hard way from getting the first one running right”.

The 1727ha non-effective area on the station comprises four types of blocks – conservation, bush, hunting safari (leased out) and bush/scrub.

The farming activity is focused only on the land on the property that is easy rolling to flat contour.

While pasture development - which began with milling in the 1960s and continued through the 80s with the government incentive schemes – is ongoing with an eye on profitable farming, there is now a firm policy in place to avoid negative environmental impact. Tillage is kept to a minimum and direct drilling and the new cross-slot systems are used.

Other awards went to:

Hill Laboratories Harvest Award - Paul and Pieke de Groot of Monavale Blueberries

Livestock Improvement Dairy Farm Award – Martin and Judith Bennett of Putaruru
Environment Waikato Water Protection and Gallagher Innovation Award - Chris and Louise Kay beef, sheep, forestry and tourism of Waitomo

Waikato Forest and Bird Society Native Forest restoration Award -
Ben and Rebecca Stubbs, who farm a large dry stock farm near Waitomo.

Finalists in the awards were:

Max and Bev Deane, dairy farmers from Puriri
Murray and Janet Easton, sheep and beef farmers, King Country

The BFEA awards were conceived in the Waikato 17 years ago and in the years since then have been run by the Farm Environment Award Trust-Waikato supported by Environment Waikato.
The Trust’s slogan is: “Good environmental management is good business”.

The award’s key objectives are to show farmers they need not compromise and, in the best examples, can restore environmental values.
The awards have attracted strong sponsorship from rural product and service providers who share the Trust’s commitment and vision.

Principal sponsor Ballance Agri-Nutrients is joined in supporting the Farm Environment Awards by Rabobank, PPCS, PGG Wrightson, Livestock Improvement Corporation, Gallagher Group, Hill Laboratories Waikato Forest and Bird Society.
The awards are supported by Environment Waikato in the Waikato region.
Ballance Farm Environment Awards programmes are also held in Wellington, Bay of Plenty, Manawatu/Wanganui, Canterbury, Otago, Southland and Northland.


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