Olivia Manusauloa and Josh Easton of Baygold Limited have been announced as Regional Supreme Winners at the Bay of Plenty Ballance Farm Environment Awards in Tauranga today.
Their kiwifruit development and management company, Baygold, is a great example of a business that is integrating environmental excellence within their kiwifruit production. In awarding the Supreme Award, the judges noted Olivia and Josh’s guardianship of the land, ensuring its practical use for the future, as well as various initiatives that show real commitment to sustainability. The couple also has a strong focus on providing real and meaningful support to staff, actively practicing social responsibility within their community.
Baygold’s orchard, The Station, spans 32ha of rolling Bay of Plenty land, with 16ha of this planted in orchards. The team’s vision is to ensure that development of the business is balanced with caring for the environment. Their approach is based on a cross-business foundation of caring, inspiring, performing and growing.
A 2.5ha wetland was commissioned and developed before the orchard’s construction began, as a partnership between local iwi, council and government. The wetland feeds into Little Waihi Estuary, slowing and filtering water.
The team is now exploring how they can harness the carbon sequestration potential of the indigenous plants. Baygold is also one of New Zealand’s first companies to participate in a carbon zero trial, with an aim of delivering carbon positive kiwifruit to the market.
Olivia Manusauloa and Josh Easton also won the following awards:
· Bayleys People in Primary Sector Award
· Hill Laboratories Agri-Science Award
· Rabobank Agri-Business Management Award
Other Bay of Plenty Ballance Farm Environment Award winners include:
Shane & Alice and Shirley Armstrong — Armstrong Farming
· Ballance Agri-Nutrients Soil Management Award
· Beef + Lamb New Zealand Livestock Farm Award
· DairyNZ Sustainability and Stewardship Award
· NZFET Biodiversity Award
Elly Sharp, Ruan Nunes, David Stephenson & Francis Pauwels — Tirohanga Fruit Co Ltd
· Norwood Farming Efficiency Award
· ZESPRI® Kiwifruit Orchard Award
Ken Goldsmith, Hinehou Timutimu and Tyson Kelly — Te Tawa Pāmu – Te Kotahitanga Dairying & Pāmu Kaiwhakahaere
· Bay Of Plenty Regional Council Farming for the Future Award
The Ballance Farm Environment Awards are run by the NZ Farm Environment Trust and champion sustainable farming and growing. The Supreme Winner from each of the eleven regions involved in the awards will go through to be considered for the Gordon Stevenson Trophy at the Trust’s National Showcase at Te Papa in May. The recipients of the Gordon Stevenson Trophy then become 2023’s National Ambassadors for Sustainable Farming and Growing.