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Award Winners Underline Contribution Of Migrant Workers - Feds

Federated Farmers offers hearty congratulations to winners of its merit awards who went on to take national honours at the Dairy Industry Awards on Saturday.

Judges described Dairy Trainee of the Year Ruth Connolly, who won the Federated Farmers Farming Knowledge Award, as articulate, considered and concise; someone who "will lead by example and will bring people into the industry."

2021 NZ Share Farmers of the Year Manoj Kumar and Sumit Kamboj, who also took out the Federated Farmers Leadership Award, had immersed themselves in their community and industry, promoting Primary ITO courses to everyone and even offering up one of their buildings to ensure the training takes place.

"In this pandemic era, as we debate at national level the role of migrant workers and border security, the success and contribution to our primary industries of these newcomers to our shores is sometimes overlooked," Feds President Andrew Hoggard said.

"Manoj and Sumit, as well as Dairy Manager of the Year Christopher Vila, are typical of the hard-working migrants who come here for a better life, and who add immensely to their local communities - including training and attracting New Zealanders to dairy careers.

"I think they, and others on the stage in Hamilton on Saturday, underline the quality and talent of migrants who choose our dairy sector in which to reach their dreams. Their achievements knock for six those who describe the work they do as low-skilled," Andrew said.

Federated Farmers congratulates all the 2021 Dairy Industry Award entrants and winners, especially former Feds Sharemilkers’ Section Chair Jeff Bolstad, who was presented with the inaugural Lifetime Contribution Award for his long service and contribution to the Dairy Industry Awards and wider agriculture sector.

"Jeff has been an institution within the Feds Sharemilker section over many years and contributed hugely to not only the Dairy Awards, but the Feds Sharemilking agreements, and all the issues that have dealt with by the Dairy Industry Group within Feds and the Waikato Province," Andrew said.

"It was great to see such a humble bloke, who has given his time with no thought of getting anything back in return, get some national recognition for all his years of effort."

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