Sunday, July 3, 2022

Arable farmers take supreme award

Methven-based arable farmers Craige and Roz Mackenzie took out the Supreme Award at this year’s Canterbury Ballance Farm Environment Awards.

The judges noted that the couple operate an extremely intensive irrigated arable operation in the Methven district, utilising state-of-the-art technology to maximise production in a sustainable manner.

“The Mackenzies have taken technology to the next step by using every available tool to improve their production and cost-efficiency.”

The couple operate a diverse business, running a 200ha arable unit (for which they won the award) alongside a dairy operation of which they have a 50% share.

Along with their daughter Gemma, they also co-own Agri-Optics and the Mackenzie Research Group.

In their cropping operation they grow specialist seed crops alongside cereals. This season the crop mix included radish, chicory, faba beans, ryegrass, fescue, wheat and barley.

The family use electromagnetic maps to determine the water holding and productive capacity within specific zones in a paddock.

They have recently introduced variable-rate irrigation on centre pivots on both the arable and dairy farms, resulting in water savings of around 50%.

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