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Silver Fern Farms Awards Additional Youth Scholarships In Light Of Covid Crisis

Silver Fern Farms has announced their Plate to Pasture Youth Scholarships recipients for 2020, adding two additional scholarships this year, on top of the six normally offered, to strengthen their support for the industry through the challenges presented by Covid-19.

Silver Fern Farms Chief Executive Simon Limmer says the commitment Silver Fern Farms has to developing young people and their careers has become even more important as the red meat industry responds to disruption around the world.

Over 60 people applied for this year’s scholarships. “They were asked to identify outstanding opportunities for the red meat industry in light of the Covid-19 crisis and to share the role they could play in New Zealand’s recovery.

“It has been exciting to hear from these young people. From their responses we can see that there is a real belief and passion from young New Zealanders who see the red meat industry making a leading contribution to global, sustainable food production, and we think they are very deserving of our support.”

“We have been delighted with this year’s crop of applications for our Plate to Pasture Youth Scholarships and thank all of the applicants who put forward their ideas. We appreciate the enthusiasm they have shown for sharing their thoughts on the future of our natural grass-fed red meat.”

Since 2017 Silver Fern Farms has invested $130,000 to further the careers of young people through the programme. Winners from across New Zealand are awarded $5000 to assist with developing their careers and capabilities in the red meat sector. In past years the panel of judges have selected six recipients of the Plate to Pasture Youth Scholarships. This year, due to the exceptional response to this year’s challenge, the scholarships have been extended to an additional two recipients, totalling $40,000.

“We want to provide financial support to an even wider group of recipients, that better connects our vision to our Plate to Pasture strategy,” says Simon Limmer. “This year our recipients presented their well-thought through opportunities for our industry in their applications. These included the deeper integration of scientific research with the agri-sector, traceability and supply chain management, and how the industry could operate more sustainably.”

As part of the process each of the applicants had their applications supported by a Silver Fern Farms Co-operative Shareholder. Chair of Silver Fern Farms Co-operative Richard Young says the process is appreciated by farmers who understand the importance of developing capability in the sector.

“The wide range of backgrounds selected demonstrates the importance of diverse food producer roles in recovering from the Covid-19 crisis. The innovative contributions we received give me great confidence in the red meat industry leaders of tomorrow”.

This year’s winners of the Silver Fern Farms Plate to Pasture Youth Scholarships are:

· Imogen Brankin

· Jack Monckton

· Dan Ryan

· Harry Hawkins

· Joe Ward

· Jazmine Burgess

· Leora Werner

· Sam Phipps

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