Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


More to Farm Environment Competition Than Winning

More to Farm Environment Competition Than Winning, Say Southland Farmers

Allan and Leeann Woodrow are glad they entered last year’s Southland Ballance Farm Environment Awards.

The Woodrows, who own a 496ha sheep and beef farm in Waikana Valley, east of Mataura, first entered the competition a couple of years ago and enjoyed the experience.

“We didn’t win anything but that wasn’t why we entered,” says Allan.
“We went in because we wanted to see how the process worked and what we could learn from it.”

Environment Southland staff and their rural banker encouraged them to enter again, and they were “chuffed” to win the Beef + Lamb New Zealand Livestock Award in the 2015 Southland Ballance Farm Environment Awards (BFEA).

Allan says their 5000 stock unit operation ‘Green Ridges’ is a traditional family-run farm.

“Our children help out on the farm and we don’t employ a lot of contract labour, which keeps our costs low.”

He says winning the Beef + Lamb New Zealand Livestock Award was extremely encouraging “because it shows we are heading in the right direction as far as sustainability goes, and it was great to get credit for that.”

The Beef + Lamb NZ Livestock Award recognises farmers who demonstrate in a practical way the choices that have been made to farm for the long term. When assessing this award, judges look at the wise use of land, labour and capital resource. They also consider animal health and the careful matching of stock class and type to land contour and soil type.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Chief Executive Dr Scott Champion says the farmer-funded and governed organisation supports the awards because they provide a great platform for showcasing that farming sustainably and profitably are not mutually exclusive.

“These farmers are demonstrating good environmental practices, and the value to the whole sector is seeing this at work.”

BFEA judges praised the Woodrow’s conservation values and their “lifelong dedication to share knowledge and develop best practice”. Stock performance on Green Ridges is excellent, with the high performing Perendale flock consistently lambing at over 150% unshepherded. Judges also noted the farm’s cattle trading policy which is designed to maximise pasture management through spring and summer while minimising soil damage in autumn and winter.

“I’ve always got a lot of pleasure out of working with stock,” says Allan. “To me it’s not a job, it’s a lifestyle.”

Allan says entering the Ballance Farm Environment Awards gave his family a valuable outside perspective of their operation.
“The judging process makes you take a fresh look at things that you see every day and might take for granted. It’s like getting a farm consultancy service for free.”

Allan says all farmers should give the competition a go, regardless of how far down the sustainability track they are.
“I think some people are scared to enter because they think they might not win anything. But it’s not really about winning; it’s more about what you can achieve on the way.

“It’s definitely a great event to be involved with and we got a lot out of it.”

Entries for the 2016 Southland Ballance Farm Environment Awards close on 27th November 2015. Entry is free and entry forms are available online at


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


NZTA: Major New Zealand Upgrade Programme Projects Go To Tender

Two major New Zealand Upgrade Programme projects are beginning tenders for construction. The New Zealand Upgrade Programme is a $6.8 billion investment to get our cities moving, to save lives and boost productivity in growth areas. The first Auckland ... More>>

Reserve Bank: RBNZ Seeks To Preserve Benefits Of Cash

The Reserve Bank – Te Pūtea Matua is taking on a new role of steward of the cash system “to preserve the benefits of cash for all who need them”, Assistant Governor Christian Hawkesby told the Royal Numismatics Society of New Zealand annual conference ... More>>


Economy: Double-Dip Recession Next Year, But Housing Rolls On

New Zealand's economy is expected to slip back into recession early next year as delayed job losses, falling consumer spending, and the absence of international tourists bites into growth. More>>


Microsoft New Zealand: Microsoft Expands “Highway To A Hundred Unicorns” Initiative To Support Startups In Asia Pacific

New Zealand, 14 October 2020 – Today Microsoft for Startups launches the Highway to a Hundred Unicorns initiative in Asia Pacific to strengthen the region’s startup ecosystem. This follows the initiative’s success in India, where 56 startups were ... More>>

Fonterra: Farmers Taking Another Step Towards New Zealand’s Low Emissions Food Production

They’re hot off the press and intended to help take the heat out of climate change. Fonterra farmers are already among the world’s most sustainable producers of milk and now have an additional tool in their sustainability toolbox. Over the last few ... More>>


Electricity: New Zealand Remains In Top 10 For Energy Balance

The World Energy Council’s Energy Trilemma Index has become part of the energy dialogue both globally and in New Zealand. The Index illustrates the need for countries to balance energy security, energy equity and environmental sustainability. New Zealand ... More>>


Courts: Businessman Eric Watson Sentenced To A Four-Month Jail Term

New Zealand businessman Eric Watson has been sentenced to a four-month jail term in the UK for contempt of court, TVNZ reports. More>>

OECD: Area Employment Rate Falls By 4.0 Percentage Points, To 64.6% In Second Quarter Of 2020

The OECD area employment rate – the share of the working-age population with jobs – fell by 4.0 percentage points, to 64.6%, in the second quarter of 2020, its lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2010. Across the OECD area, 560 million persons ... More>>

Spark: Turns On 5G In Auckland And Offers A Glimpse Into The Future Of Smart Cities

Spark turned on 5G in downtown Auckland today and has partnered with Auckland Transport (AT) to showcase some of the latest in IoT (Internet of Things) technology and demonstrate what the future could look like for Auckland’s CBD with the power of 5G. 5G is ... More>>

Stats NZ: Monthly Migration Remains Low

Since the border closed in late-March 2020, net migration has averaged about 300 a month, Stats NZ said today. In the five months from April to August 2020, overall net migration was provisionally estimated at 1,700. This was made up of a net gain ... More>>

University of Canterbury: Proglacial Lakes Are Accelerating Glacier Ice Loss

Lake Tasman, New Zealand | 2016 | Photo: Dr Jenna Sutherland Meltwater lakes that form at glacier margins cause ice to recede much further and faster compared to glaciers that terminate on land, according to a new study. But the effects of these glacial ... More>>


Dairy: Fonterra Sells China Farms

Fonterra has agreed to sell its China farms for a total of $555 million (RMB 2.5 billion*1), after successfully developing the farms alongside local partners. Inner Mongolia Natural Dairy Co., Ltd, a subsidiary of China Youran Dairy Group Limited ... More>>