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Dairy Awards Secures Future in Industry

Dairy Awards Secures Future in Industry

Participating in the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards has turned dreams into reality for the 2014 New Zealand Farm Manager of the Year, Nick Bertram.

“I am pretty happy as we know that we have got job security in the dairy industry. We are 100% going 50:50 sharemilking. Entering the dairy awards has made our dreams become reality,” Mr Bertram says.

Entries are now being accepted online at www.dairyindustryawards.co.nz in the 2015 awards programme, including the New Zealand Sharemilker/Equity Farmer of the Year, New Zealand Farm Manager of the Year and New Zealand Dairy Trainee of the Year competitions.

All entries close on November 30.

Mr Bertram entered the awards twice before winning, and is quick to remind people that in his first year entering he did not even make the top six in the regional farm manager competition.

“I entered as I wanted to go out and prove that I was a pretty good manager, and I did find it tough to get a good manager’s job when I first went looking.

“Now, my future is secure and that’s made me a lot more excited about the dairy industry.”

On Saturday Mr Bertram will marry his partner, Rose, and the couple has committed to a further season contract milking 260 cows at Featherston. They then plan to progress to 50:50 sharemilking in 2016 and want to compete in the Sharemilker/Equity Farmer competition.

He has joined the Hawkes Bay Wairarapa regional awards committee and has the job of contacting potential entrants and encouraging them to enter.

“I have convinced at least a few people that are umming and erring about it. People don’t want to enter when they are first year managers on a farm. I tell them to go with the attitude to learn what the dairy awards are all about. Don’t take it too serious, do your best, but don’t put pressure on yourself.”

He says it is most important that they enjoy the experience.

“There are some people that have got disheartened because they didn’t get anywhere or were unhappy with the judges’ feedback. When I get feedback I want to know where I can do better so I find it really constructive. In my feedback from nationals, you wouldn’t have thought I had won as there is so much more I can be doing better – people are surprised when they hear that.”

Mr Bertram says the awards are free to enter.

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

Visit www.dairyindustryawards.co.nz for more information on the awards.

ENDS

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