30 May 2014
Dairy Awards Helps 7000 Entrants
About 7000 entries have been received in the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards, since the New Zealand Sharemilker of the
Year competition began 25 years ago.
“It’s a pretty impressive number. When we started to look at the figures and add up those that have entered over the
years we were really surprised,” national convenor Chris Keeping says.
“What is also true is that the number of people involved or touched by the awards is many more times that.”
Mrs Keeping says many of the entries received were from couples and they were supported by farm owners, farm staff and
families. Sponsors have also played a significant role in the awards programme with sponsor representatives from
throughout the country backing the awards and encouraging clients to participate.
She says others have attended winners’ field days or regional and national awards dinners. There are also a large number
of volunteers that run the regional competitions, including convenors, judges and co-ordinators.
“The reality is that the number of people that have been involved in the awards in one way or another is actually in the
tens of thousands.
“And due to the longevity of the awards, in particular the sharemilker competition, there are people at the top of the
dairy industry who are past entrants, winners, judges and sponsors. These people, like all those that participate, know
the benefits from entering in terms of increased confidence, establishing networks, improved business performance,
enhanced reputation and prizes received.”
Mrs Keeping says the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards now operates three competitions aimed at assisting people to
progress in the dairy industry – the Sharemilker/Equity Farmer of the Year, Farm Manager of the Year and Dairy Trainee
of the Year.
“The competitions attract in excess of 500 entries annually and play a key role in motivating and highlighting to
entrants the career opportunities available in the dairy industry.”
She says the awards programme is also continually evolving to ensure it offers relevant contests with sufficient
“We are the country’s longest-running dairy farming competition and we plan to stay that way for some time to come.”
The New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards are supported by national sponsors Westpac, DairyNZ, Ecolab, Federated Farmers,
Fonterra, Honda Motorcycles NZ, LIC, Meridian Energy, Ravensdown, RD1 and Triplejump, along with industry partner