Jordan Smith, a young shepherd working on the Kearins Bros Limited farm in Te Kuiti has been announced as the inaugural winner of the Ahuwhenua Young Maori Sheep & Beef Farmer of the Year award in the Hawke’s Bay tonight.
The competition was launched last year as part of the Ahuwhenua Trophy BNZ Māori Excellence in Farming Award and was targeted at young dairy farmers, while this is the first year the competition has targeted sheep & beef farmers.
Fred Hardy, who sits on the judging panel, said it was an extremely tight competition this year with Te Moana Sidney, a junior shepherd at Mount Herbert Station, Waipukurau named as runner-up.
“Our two young finalists, Jordan and Te Moana, are top performers and impressive young men,” Fred says.
“Jordan and Te Moana have both taken on responsibilities on-farm and have strong direction and ambition in their careers. They understand the world they are in and are great young advocates for the industry” Fred continues.
“Jordan has a strong understanding of the need for education and wants to learn all he can about sheep & beef farming. He is intelligent and has very clear goals. He has taken on his responsibilities with ease.”
The announcement took place tonight at the national Ahuwhenua awards event that provides the chance to celebrate excellence in the New Zealand pastoral sector.
The award was open to young Māori aged 16-25 years who are employed on a sheep & beef farm and are currently enrolled in or have completed within the last year, a National Certificate in Agriculture Level 3 or higher.
“Both Jordan and Te Moana are now part of the Ahuwhenua family. They will receive opportunities that will be invaluable to them in the future. It is young people like Jordan and Te Moana that make me confident that Maori agribusiness is in very good hands,” Fred concludes.
We can offer interviews and photos of Jordan and Te Moana. If you are interesting in arranging an interview or sourcing photos, please contact Anna Lindsay, AgITO Communications Adviser on 04 382 2853/ 027 8977 964 or by emailing email@example.com