A tremendous passion for farming,and sharing this passion with their local community has earned Andrew and Vicky Booth the Regional Supreme Award at the Northland Ballance Farm Environment Awards in Whangarei this evening.
The Booths are helping to bridge the urban-rural divide by working with schools to get 2,000 native plants into the ground each year. This partnership is providing a positive influence for the school children as they learn about looking after their environment.
Their philosophy is to educate and share knowledge with their community, while also focusing on creating a dairy farm with long-term resilience. In addition to the work with schools, Andrew is a DairyNZ Climate Change Ambassador, and is involved with the Dairy Environmental Leaders Group and Northland Dairy Development Trust.
Over three generations, significant investment has gone into creating a farm that is both environmentally and economically sustainable. This includes creating a new wetland area, active pest management, and preserving natural areas of native bush – encouraging the return of endangered native birds.
In awarding the Regional Supreme Award, the judges noted that the Booths’ farm is both environmentally and economically sustainable, and their community involvement is a real strength of the business, all of which reflects Andrew and Vicky’s tremendous passion for the industry.
Looking to the future, the Booths aim to maintain production while further reducing inputs – all while continuing to care for the land with the help of their wider community.
Andrew and Vicky also won the following awards:
· DairyNZ Sustainability and Stewardship Award
· Rabobank Agri-Business Management Award
· NZFET Climate Recognition Award
· Northland Regional Council Water Quality Enhancement Award
Other Northland Ballance Farm Environment Award winners include:
David and Adrienne Wordsworth — D&A Wordsworth
· Ballance Agri-Nutrients Soil Management Award
· Beef + Lamb New Zealand Livestock Farm Award
· Hill Laboratories Agri-Science Award
· Norwood Farming Efficiency Award
· NZFET Innovation Award
Peter Jones, Tim Robinson, Ben and Tereza Byrne — The Landing
· Bayleys People in Primary Sector Award
· NZFET Biodiversity 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 Stephenson Trophy at the Trust’s National Showcase at Te Papa in May. The recipients of the Gordon Stephenson Trophy then become 2023’s National Ambassadors for Sustainable Farming and Growing.