The high calibre of finalists for this year’s Primary Industry New Zealand Awards has created a difficult job for its judging panel, Federated Farmers chief executive Terry Copeland says.
The awards ceremony on July 3 at Tākina, Wellington’s new Convention and Exhibition Centre, is the highlight of the fifth annual PINZ Summit.
“There were 65 award nominations this year and they underline the amazing diversity, commitment and cutting-edge science that underpin our nation’s primary industries,” Copeland said.
“It’s little wonder that our primary food and fibre products are so highly regarded in the intensely competitive international marketplace when, through these awards, you get a glimpse into the dedication and focus our researchers, producers, processors, innovators and governors invest in being the best they can be.”
In the Team & Collaboration category, the judges will have to decide between a five–year game–changing initiative to implement plantain as an environmentally functional forage; an all–women team that harnessed empathy and precision to devise digital farm plans to help food and fibre producers boost environmental and business sustainability; and a multi–organisation collaboration striving for new solutions to the challenges facing hill country farmers.
The Fibre Producer award will come down to a choice between a fast–selling and innovative performance equine feed that started out as an idea on a date; a vertically integrated sawmilling business with impressive environmental and productivity credentials; and a traditional sheep station that has pursued a boutique fibre business with crafters and home spinners in mind.
“Those are the finalists in just two of the nine categories that feature in the 2023 Primary Industries New Zealand Awards,” Copeland said.
“I don’t envy the judges deciding who the winners should be but I know the awards night and the PINZ Summit will be a showcase of everything that is great in our agriculture, forestry and fishing sectors.”
The full list of finalists are:
Team & Collaboration Award
Dairy NZ – Tararua Plantain Project
Beef + Lamb NZ, MBIE, Seed Force NZ and PGG Wrightson Seeds – Hill Country Futures Programme
Wai Kōkopu – Tipu Whenua – Digital Farm Plan
Technology Innovation Award
Levno – Levno for Milk
DairySmart NZ – James Bourke
University of Waikato – The e-Bin human assisted harvesting project
Emerging Leader Award
Dr Louise Hennessy, scientist, AgResearch
Laura Koot, executive director, the Fairlight Foundation
Dylan Miller, regional manager Livestock North Island, Alliance Group
Fibre Producer Award
Grains & Gains Co
OneFortyOne – Kaituna Sawmill
Rewa Rewa Station
Food & Beverage Producer Award
Headwaters NZ – Head Waters Brand Story
Sanford – Big Glory Bay Salmon
Silver Fern Farms – Silver Fern Farms
Outstanding Contribution to New Zealand’s Primary Industries Award
Professor Keith Woodford, Honorary Professor of Agri–Food Systems, Lincoln University
Dr Tim Mackle, CE, Dairy NZ
Julian O’Brien, producer & director, TVNZ
Guardianship & Conservation Award (Kaitiakitanga Award)
Graham & Tracey Sinnamon, farm managers, Meringa Station – Pāmu Farms
Adam Thompson, Restore Native
Yuriy Soshnikov, director TranzAlpine Honey New Zealand
Dr Dave Leathwick, scientist, AgResearch
Ross Wilson, consultant, AgFirst
Warwick Catto, science strategy manager & Jamie Strange of Ballance Farm Environment Awards
Science & Research Award
AgResearch – The AgResearch Endophyte Discovery Team
Massey University of New Zealand – Project Vitality – Pāmu Deer Milk
Maui Milk New Zealand – Southern Cross Index (SXI)