With entries still rolling in for the 2024 New Zealand Dairy industry Award programme, the search now begins for this year’s recipient of the Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award, which recognises and celebrates leadership in farming practices and farmers who demonstrate responsibility and sustainability.
The refreshed category is open to farm owners, businesses and former share-farmer winners, irrespective of which dairy company they supply. It incorporates all aspects of sustainability, including environment, animal health and welfare, financial, community and people.
New Zealand Dairy industry Award (NZDIA) general manager Robin Congdon said a category review found there were many worthy nominations for the category, but those nominees were humble and reluctant to compete for the award.
“The sentiment of the award was always about celebrating and honouring farmers and farm businesses who are making a difference and doing positive and aspirational things in the dairy sustainability space,” he said.
“This award category allows us to recognise those doing great work in the responsible dairying space and showcase to the world what the New Zealand dairy industry is achieving while inspiring others to do the same.”
Anne Douglas, group director Farm Source, said sustainable farming is about walking the walk, not just talking the talk.
“It’s what you do when no one is looking. It’s also about not just living for the here and now, but about thinking for the future and those that will come after you, paving the way and being a role model for the next generation of farmers.”
In terms of the changes, all confirmed nominees will be invited to attend their regional awards dinner and be acknowledged as a Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award nominee, with the top three invited to the national final dinner in Queenstown, where the most outstanding contribution will be honoured with the Fonterra Responsible Dairying Award.
Nominations for the category, including self-nominations, can be made via dairyindustryawards.co.nz from November 1 to January 31, 2024. All farmer businesses and owners who own more than 50% of a farm business are eligible for nomination, as are former share-farmer category winners.