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Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award

The Fonterra Responsible Dairy Award (FRDA) recognises farmers/farm businesses who are doing positive and aspirational things in the dairy sustainability space, and therefore contribute to good stories about the dairy industry.

If you know a farm business or a farm owner doing great work in this space then nominate them for the Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award.

All confirmed nominees will be invited to attend their regional awards dinner and will be acknowledged as a FRDA nominee. The top three will be invited to nationals, where we will recognise the most outstanding contribution by awarding them the FRDA

How to Nominate

Check Eligibility

All farm businesses and owners who own greater than 50% of a farm business and previous Share Farmer regional winners are eligible for nomination

Nominate someone or yourself

Entrants can be nominated by others or you can nominate yourself, if you are doing great work in this space let's share it with others. 

Nominations open 1st November

What next?

Nominees will be contacted to confirm they accept their nomination and will be provided details about the programme.  Other than a short acceptance questionnaire (which will cover eligibility, nominee declaration and agreement to conditions) nominees will not need to complete any further documentation.

Who's the award for?

The Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award, is aimed at:

  • A farm business/owner who owns 50% or more of a farm business

  • Or a previous Share Farmer of the Year winner

Those who are eligible to enter the NZ Dairy Industry Awards SFOTY, DMOTY or DTOTY categories are not eligible to be nominated for the Responsible Dairying Award.


What is responsible dairying?

Responsible Dairying incorporates all aspects of sustainability, including environment, animal health and welfare, financial, community and people. The award intends to recognise and celebrate dairy farmers for their good work, whether that be for doing well across all areas of responsible dairying, or for being exemplars in just one

The award recognises dairy farmers and businesses who are demonstrating leadership in their approach to responsible dairying, a way of conducting a farm business where actions and results demonstrate responsibility and sustainability. The Responsible Dairying Award gives the NZDIA the opportunity to also honour and recognise farmers who have progressed to the fourth stage of progression – ownership – who demonstrate leadership in their farming practices and are role models for younger farmers as they progress in the sector. The recipient will be an ambassador for the industry who can inspire others.

FRDA Selection Process

  Opening & Closing Dates

Nominations open 01 November 2023 and close 31 of January 2024.

  Assessment and recognition

All eligible nominees that accept their nomination will be invited to attend their regional awards dinner and will be acknowledged as a FRDA nominee at the dinner


The top three exemplars will be invited to nationals week where we will announce the recipient at the National Dairy Industry Awards Dinner in May.


"What does responsible farming mean to us? It’s really all-inclusive, it’s environmental sustainability, it’s looking after the land, environment and water, it’s looking after the animals and our people."

- Cameron Henderson,  Recipient of the Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award 2023

Access tailored help

For further information, please contact Steph Russell at the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards.