The Government last month approved the sale of more than 4000ha of farmland to foreign buyers for conversion to production forests.
The Overseas Investment Office (OIO) report for March lists approval for six sales of farmland in Southland, Wairarapa, Hawke’s Bay, East Coast and Northland.
They range in size from 160ha at Tuatapere, Western Southland, to the 1275ha Maunga O Rangi Station near Gisborne.
The sales were approved under the Government’s special forestry test and the bulk land sold is classed six and seven with elements of class four.
Information provided about the sales indicate the bulk of the land will be planted in Pinus radiata.
The 1275ha Maunga O Rangi Station has been bought by Kauri Forestry, a partnership established as part of Craigmore Sustainables Group, an existing forestry investor.
Information provided by the OIO shows it is owned by interests from Germany and Switzerland.
“The recent sales were approved under the Government’s special forestry test and the bulk land sold is classed six and seven with elements of class four.”
The property has been run as sheep and beef finishing and breeding and the land is classed as six and seven.
Other sales include a 549ha unit near Tuatapere in Western Southland operating as a beef and dairy grazing unit that is listed as class four and six land.
It has been bought by Ponga Silva Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of a German company, which was established as a forestry investor in NZ.
A second Tuatapere farm has been sold for forestry, a 264ha property at Happy Valley to Malaysian company Pine Plantations Private Ltd, which has existing forest holdings including a block adjacent to this property.
The land does not have any dwelling and is classed as four and six.
Also going into forestry is Earlyhurst, a 944ha sheep and beef farm at Bideford near Masterton, predominantly class 6 land.
It has been bought by Austrian company Cerberus Vermogensverwaltung GmbH (ALL CRRT), which has existing forestry interests.
A 702ha Kaipara beef breeding and finishing block is being subdivided from a larger property and sold to Totara Forestry, predominantly owned by interests from German, Finland and the United Kingdom.
The balance of the property is being retained by the vendor.
The land sold for forestry is rated predominantly class six and seven.
Stoneridge Farm, a 609ha property running sheep and beef at Porangahau in Central Hawke’s Bay, has been bought by the investment arm of Ingka Group, the largest international franchisee of IKEA stores.
That entity is ultimately wholly owned by investors from the Netherlands.
Its land is mainly classed six and seven.
The same purchaser recently received approval from the OIO to buy the 5500ha Wisp Hill Station in South Otago, which will have 3000ha converted to forestry with the balance regenerating to native bush.