24 November 2015
There is a week to go until entries close in the 2016 New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards, including the Share Farmer of the Year, Dairy Manager of the Year and Dairy Trainee of the Year competitions.
Entries are being accepted online at this website and close at midnight on November 30.
General Manager Chris Keeping says there have been 360 entries received to date, including 358 who entered in time to be eligible for the Early Bird Entry Prize Draw of $12,000 in travel vouchers and spending money*.
“What’s really pleasing to see is the even spread of entries across the three competitions. We made some significant changes to the entry criteria in each of the competitions this year and one of the reasons for that was to make the competitions more even.
“The other major reason was to enable more people – as some had been unable to enter one of the competitions – the ability to enter.”
Mrs Keeping says the entries to date include 100 entered in the Share Farmer of the Year competition, 131 in the Dairy Manager of the Year competition and 129 in the Dairy Trainee of the Year contest.
“In the past few years our dairy trainee numbers have been nearly double the entries in the other competitions. The changes we made of restricting the entrants age from 18 to 25 years and reducing the number of years they can have been farming to a maximum of three has made it a true trainee competition and certainly affected entries in the 2016 contest. Like always we’ll review it after and see if any tweaks need to be made.”
She says organisers are positive final entry numbers will reach 500, though the lower payout environment and the competition changes have created some uncertainty.
“We know there’re huge benefits and opportunities to be had for those that do take the step to enter the awards – in prizes that can be won, networks and friendships developed, confidence gained, business improvement and career advancement.”
The Awards are supported by national sponsors Westpac, DairyNZ, DeLaval, Ecolab, Federated Farmers, Fonterra Farm Source, Honda Motorcycles, LIC, Meridian Energy, and Ravensdown, along with industry partner Primary ITO.
More information on the awards, including the entry criteria changes, can be found at this website.
*There are three prize draws – one in each competition. To be eligible entrants must proceed through judging in January or February next year.