March 13, 2016
Ahuwhenua benchmark for sustainable farming
Big crowds are turning out for year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy field days to see how the top Maori farmers are approaching their business.
Three hundred people were at Ngai Tahu’s Te Whenua Hou farms near Oxford, Canterbury last week, and a similar number looked over the Tewi Trust farm in South Waikato at the weekend.
Kingi Smiler, the chair of the trophy organising committee, says while the 138 hectare Tewi Trust operation is not on the same scale as Ngai Tahu’s massive dairy conversion, it is still able to generate a good net margin even when when prices are poor.
He says the trust has spent many years putting together their ancestral lands into an economic block.
Ngai Tahu Farming chief executive, Andrew Priest, says the company is working with Lincoln University to more accurately measure the carbon footprint associated with its farming activities and how they are impacting climate change.
He says addressing environmental concerns is key to New Zealand securing its place in world markets.
On Wednesday the final Ahuwhenua field day will be at Rakaia Incorporation's Tahu a Tao dairy farm near Ashburton.
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