The Vodafone/Federated Farmers Cream of the Crop Awards were held in conjunction with this year’s national conference in Ashburton.
The 2013 Allflex Agri Business Person went to Smiler while the 2013 Agri Business Personality was van der Heyden.
Federated Farmers president Bruce Wills said the Agri Personality of the Year was to recognise the one outstanding personality who, over 2012-13, had influenced New Zealand farming.
“When the board met to decide the award, Sir Henry van der Heyden was easily the one person who truly stood out over the past 12 months. While he has left Fonterra his influence and mana has not diminished,” Wills said.
The final award of the evening was the key Allflex Agri Business Person of the Year.
The shortlist was made up of Landcorp’s Chris Kelly, Wairarapa Moana Incorporation/Miraka chairman Kingi Smiler and Dr John Baker ONZM, of Baker No-Tillage.
“It was a tough decision but Kingi Smiler’s gifted business leadership of Wairarapa Moana Incorporation, a founding shareholder in Maori dairy company Miraka, saw him emerge as first among equals.
“Kingi is, simply put, an outstanding business person being a former partner in Ernst & Young and holding directorships across the agribusiness sphere. He is the chairman of Tairawhiti Land Development Trust and a director of Mangatu Incorporation, the Wi Pere Trust and Wellington Rugby Union,” Wills said.