Attitude Wins In Canterbury Dairy Awards

Press Release – Canterbury Dairy Awards

The 2011 Canterbury North Otago Farm Managers of the Year Michael and Susan Woodward pride themselves on their team work, leadership and can-do attitude.Attitude Wins In Canterbury Dairy Awards

The 2011 Canterbury North Otago Farm Managers of the Year Michael and Susan Woodward pride themselves on their team work, leadership and can-do attitude.

The couple also values the opportunity that the scale of the 2000-cow Synlait farm they contract milk at Rakaia provides.

“We have the ability to manage stock, people and grass to our advantage in order to make the business successful. Things such as cost savings through bulk purchases, brand recognition and building relationships are all part of what make us a successful farming business,” the Woodwards, who won $10,800 in cash and prizes, say.

The Canterbury North Otago Dairy Industry Awards were held at Hotel Ashburton last night. The 2011 Canterbury North Otago Sharemilker/Equity Farmers of the Year Rob and Debbie Mackle, and 2011 Canterbury North Otago Dairy Trainee of the Year Abigail Vickers were the other two big winners.

It was the third time the Woodwards had entered the awards, saying it had encouraged them to set down goals and the steps needed to achieve those goals. “Overall, it has made us better people and more focused on where we want to be and how we are going to get there.”

The couple says people are a strength of their business. “We pride ourselves on superb team work, leadership and a can do attitude. We have a really great support network and we provide all our employees with what they need to make them, the cows and the farm perform.”

Their next goal is to go 50% sharemilking on a large scale dairy farm.

Dunsandel farm manager Dion Gordon placed second in the Canterbury North Otago Farm Manager of the Year, winning $6200 in cash and prizes. Geraldine contract milkers Hamish and Jill Johnson were third, winning $1700.

The Dairy Industry Awards are supported by national sponsors Westpac, DairyNZ, Ecolab, Federated Farmers, Fonterra, Honda Motorcycles NZ, LIC, Meridian Energy, Ravensdown and RD1, along with industry partner Agriculture ITO.

The 2011 Canterbury North Otago Sharemilker/Equity Farmers of the Year Rob and Debbie Mackle are 50% sharemilking 550 cows for Graham Brooker near Ashburton. They won $25,000 in cash and prizes.

They have progressed through the industry to their current position and believe the two strengths of their farm business are their pasture growth and utilisation, and focus on sustainability for them, their staff, herd and the farm.

The Mackles have entered the Dairy Industry Awards five times and say it has benefited them through business and personal growth and opportunities to network with others. Their goal is farm ownership.

Equity sharemilkers Shaun and Joanne Black placed second in the sharemilker/equity farmer contest winning $7100, and large-scale lower order sharemilkers Enda and Sarah Hawe were third, winning $4200.

The winner of the 2011 Canterbury North Otago Dairy Trainee of the Year Abigail Vickers has the goal of owning an organic farm. She won $5600.

Right now the 25-year-old is an assistant for sharemilkers Chris Morrissey and Lucy Rust (who also entered this year’s awards) on a 530-cow farm near Ashburton.

She entered the awards for the first time to compare her skills against others in a similar role, and to improve her knowledge and confidence.

Before going dairy farming, Ms Vickers worked in the pig industry and also in a plant nursery.

Christchurch 20-year-old farm assistant, Joshua Grant, was second in the trainee contest, winning $500, and Ashburton assistant Nicholas Rogers, 28, was third, winning $250.

All three winners will now compete for the New Zealand Sharemilker/Equity Farmer of the Year, New Zealand Farm Manager of the Year and New Zealand Dairy Trainee of the Year titles and a prize pool of more than $130,000 in Queenstown on May 14.

Canterbury North Otago Sharemilker/Equity Farmer of the Year Rob and Debbie Mackle will host a field day on April 13, while Canterbury North Otago Farm Managers of the Year Michael and Susan Woodward will host a field day on the Rakaia farm they manage on April 7. Further details on the winners and field days can be found on www.dairyindustryawards.co.nz .

Sharemilker/Equity Farmer Merit Awards:

* NZDIA Canterbury North Otago First Time Entrant Award – Chris & Jody Glassford * Riverside Veterinary Services Ltd Animal Health Award – Hayden & Jessie Dorman * DairyNZ Human Resources Award – Chris Morrissey & Lucy Rust * Ecolab Farm Dairy Hygiene Award – Rob & Debbie Mackle * Federated Farmers of New Zealand Leadership Award – Greig Moore * Honda Farm Safety and Health Award – Rob & Debbie Mackle * LIC Recording and Productivity Award – Chris Morrissey & Lucy Rust

* Meridian Energy Farm Environment Award – Enda & Sarah Hawe * Ravensdown Pasture Performance Award – Rob & Debbie Mackle * Westpac Business Performance Award – Rob & Debbie Mackle

Farm Manager Merit Awards:

* TH Enterprises Ltd Outstanding Progression Award – Robert Holt & Stephanie Macfarlane * NZDIA Canterbury North Otago Pride & Presentation Award – Tony Lamborn * DairyNZ Human Resource Management Award – Dion Gordon * RD1 Farm Management Award – Michael & Susan Woodward * Westpac Financial Planning and Management Award – Michael & Susan Woodward

Dairy Trainee Merit Award:

* Farming Knowledge Merit Award – Dean Borland
ends

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