Farm Environment Award Trust Has Big Plans For 2011


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2010 was another successful year for the New Zealand Farm Environment Award (NZFEA) Trust and its flagship event, the Ballance Farm Environment Awards. But chairman Jim Cotman (pictured above) says 2011 is shaping up to be even better.

NZFEA held its annual general meeting in late October and Mr Cotman, a North Waikato farmer who was re-elected chairman at the AGM, says the Trust has maintained the momentum of previous years and is “looking forward to another great year” for the Ballance Farm Environment Awards (BFEA).

He says new initiatives for the 2011 competition will include the addition of a ninth region, the East Coast, and the naming of a national winner.

NZFEA general manager David Natzke says the difficult economic situation and adverse weather conditions didn’t deter 113 farming enterprises entering the 2010 awards.

He says feedback from those who participated confirmed it was a thoroughly worthwhile experience.

“Without exception, they have all found the judging process to be beneficial to their farming enterprise and some plan on coming back to have another go.”

Supreme winner field days around the country drew huge attendances, reflecting increased farmer interest in sustainability.

Mr Cotman praised the efforts of NZFEA trustees and welcomed a number of new trustees to the board. These are Dave Cameron, Masterton, Simon Saunders Southland, Joanne van Polanen, Canterbury, Royce Kokich, Northland, and Larry Bilodeau as sponsor’s representative.

He also acknowledged the ongoing support from the Trust’s strategic partners, regional councils and a “very dedicated team of sponsors”.

Another highlight for NZFEA was being invited to make a presentation to the Primary Production Select Committee at Parliament. This presentation, which featured former supreme award-winning farmers, was well received by a full committee, including the Minister of Agriculture, David Carter.

Mr Cotman also welcomed Beef + Lamb New Zealand to the BFEA sponsorship team.

A copy of NZFEA’s annual report and audited accounts, along with comments from past-competition entrants, is available from the NZFEA Trust website at

For more information on the New Zealand Farm Environment Award Trust or the Ballance Farm Environment Awards, contact David Natzke, General Manager, New Zealand Farm Environment Award Trust, phone 07 834 0400, or email .

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