Monday, February 26, 2024

 Kenyon honoured for work on sheep production

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McMeekan award goes to Massey professor with ‘international reputation as an expert in sheep husbandry’.
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Massey University’s head of agriculture and environment, Professor Paul Kenyon, has received a national award for his contribution to animal production in New Zealand. 

The McMeekan Memorial Award, presented annually since 1975 by the NZ Society of Animal Production (NZSAP), recognises an outstanding individual or joint contribution to animal production in NZ or the society in the past five years. The award is given at the society’s annual conference in November.

The award is in honour of NZSAP foundation member, past president and distinguished leader in animal production research Dr Campbell Percy “Mac” McMeekan. He had a big influence on NZ agricultural research and was instrumental in the development of a world-renowned agricultural research centre.

Kenyon was nominated for the award due to his sustained level of research excellence over a prolonged period – research that is making an impact and has resulted in practice change in the NZ industry.

His nomination reads: “This has been achieved through undertaking research which has directly addressed important industry questions and being active in various forms of technology transfer. This has allowed him to convey his findings to end users in a form that allows them to make impactful changes on their farms. Further, he has gained an international reputation as an expert in sheep husbandry, under pastoral grazing conditions, who adds value to international projects and has an ability to transfer his New Zealand-gained knowledge in an international context.”

Kenyon said receiving an award like this is not possible without being part of successful research teams.

“I wish to acknowledge my colleagues and postgraduate students from Massey University’s agricultural and veterinary-based schools. They have helped create a positive, productive and enjoyable research environment. I have also been fortunate to have worked with collaborators from universities in New Zealand and internationally, and with New Zealand’s Crown Research Institutes and equivalent organisations in Australia, Ireland and Uruguay.

“I would also like to acknowledge the farmers who work with our funders. I like to think our work has helped increase the productivity and profitability of sheep and beef cattle farming systems in New Zealand.”

Kenyon was first appointed to Massey in 1997 as a research and teaching technician after completing his Master’s. He was then promoted to lecturer while he undertook his PhD and was promoted to professor in 2011. He became the Head of School of Agriculture and Environment in 2018 and won a University Research Medal in 2022.

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