June 8, 2012
Kapenga M Trust Wins 2012 Ahuwhenua Trophy for Maori Excellence in Dairy Farming
A commitment to maintaining land and resources for future generations was a strong theme at this evening’s final of the
prestigious 2012 Ahuwhenua Trophy – Bank of New Zealand Maori Excellence in Farming competition which was won by the
Kapenga M Trust from Rotorua.
Chairman Roku Mihinui accepted the Ahuwhenua Trophy at tonight’s Award dinner at Auckland’s SkyCity Convention Centre,
on behalf of his farm staff, board, trustees and shareholders.
“Look after Mother Nature and she’ll look after you. Recognise when she is stressed and work with her as naturally as
possible to achieve a sustainable environment,” he said.
The Kapenga M Trust has 915 shareholders of Tuhourangi descent.
His Excellency, Lieutenant General, the Right Honourable Sir Jerry Mateparae, GNZM, QSO presented Roku Mihinui with the
trophy before an enthusiastic audience of over 580 people.
“Platinum sponsor BNZ’s Head of Agribusiness Richard Bowman who presented the winner with a gold medal said BNZ has long
recognised that Maori agribusiness is a dynamic part of the wider sector.
“We have sponsored the competition for 10 years now and have seen it, and the farms it showcases, go from strength to
strength and become industry leading businesses for the benefit of their iwi, communities and the country as a whole.
“We're truly honoured to partner with this prestigious Award and recognise the mana associated with all who are
The other two finalists in the competition were Tauhara Moana Trust (Taupo) and Wharepi Whanau Trust, (Te Puke).
Chair of the Ahuwhenua competition’s management committee, Kingi Smiler said that the success of Kapenga M highlights
the sophistication of an increasing number of highly successful Maori owned agribusinesses.
“At the heart of their success is the priority they put on environmental and cultural concerns. They know that as the
current caretakers of their land they are responsible for ensuring this precious resource is available to future
generations to provide for themselves and their families and to contribute to the wealth and prosperity of the whole
country,” he said.
The Ahuwhenua Trophy is the premier award for Māori in agriculture. It acknowledges and celebrates business excellence
in the New Zealand pastoral sector and is open to Māori farming properties either owned individually, or managed by
Māori Trusts and Incorporations in New Zealand.
Each year it alternates between beef and sheep farms and dairy farms. This is the fourth year since the competition was
revived in 2003 that entrants have competed for the Ahuwhenua Trophy for excellence in Māori dairy farming.
The winner of the Young Maori Farmer Cadet/Trainee Award was announced earlier in the evening. The inaugural winner was
Tangaroa Walker (Ranginui/Pukenga). This, another prestigious award, is sponsored by AgITO, Te Puni Kokiri, Allflex and
BNZ is the Platinum Sponsor for the Ahuwhenua Award. Gold sponsors are Fonterra, DairyNZ and Te Puni Kokiri. Silver
sponsors are AgResearch, AgITO, PGG Wrightson and Ballance Agri-Nutrients. Bronze sponsors are the Ministry for Primary
Industries, Allflex, AFFCO, BDO, Māori Trustee, LIC, Re:Gen and Polaris. Sponsor support was also be supplied by Tohu
Wines, FOMA, Landcorp, Agrecovery, DB Breweries and Ecolab.
For more information contact:
Media Advisor Pamela Fleming – 0274 575677
The Kapenga M dairy unit, 20 km to the south of Rotorua is a 330ha property currently running a mixed Jersey/Friesian
herd of 1,020 stock units. Its stock performance centres on a strategy of developing high breeding worth cows that can
harvest high levels of pasture.
Since 2009 the farms total milk production has increased steadily from 241441kg in 2008 to 371169 kg although its herd
has only increased by nine cows. Production per cow has gone from 246kgMS to 372kgMS.
The farm is owned by the Kapenga M Trust which has a proud association with the Ahuwhenua Trophy competition having won
the Ahuwhenua Trophy for sheep and beef farming in 2003.
The Kapenga M Trust has 915 shareholders of Tuhourangi descent. They own a total of 1,858 hectares which include a sheep
and beef farm and a deer farm. The Trust is currently harvesting 100 hectares of forestry woodlots planted 28 years ago.
Proceeds from this harvest, coupled with last year’s record Fonterra payout, encouraged the Trust to consolidate its
property and grow its holdings to include land with genealogical connections to its current owners. In 2008 it sold its
dairy farm situated some 60 kms away at Mamaku and has bought a 250ha dairy farm adjacent to its Waikite Valley
holdings. Both properties are on land that Tuhourangi have a whakapapa connection to since the eruption of Tarawera in
The Kapenga M Trust pays regular annual dividends to its owners. It also provides education and kaumātua grants and is a
Foundation investor in the Te Arawa Future Farming Training programme