Entries open for 2023 Ahuwhenua Trophy Horticulture Competition

In the photo: Barry O'Neil, President & Chairman of Directors, Horticulture New Zealand, Nukuhia Hadfield, Chair, Ahuwhenua Trophy Management Committee, Bernadine Guilleux, Vice President & Director, Horticulture New Zealand and Cedric Nepia, Trophy Kaitiaki, Te Puni Kōkiri.

Entries are now open for the prestigious Ahuwhenua Trophy, Excellence in Māori Horticulture Award. The announcement was made by Barry O’Neil, President of Ahumāra Kai Aotearoa – Horticulture New Zealand, at the Horticulture New Zealand AGM held in Nelson this week.

The Ahuwhenua Trophy is held annually, and over a three-year cycle covers dairy, sheep and beef and horticulture, with the inaugural competition for horticulture held in 2020. The competition objective is to recognise excellence in Māori horticulture and is open to individual Māori running horticultural operations, as well as other entities such as Māori trusts and incorporations.

“What a great privilege it is for the horticulture industry to be associated with the Ahuwhenua Trophy, and showcase the tremendous mahi that Māori are doing to further our industry, as well as their own iwi and whānau. The inaugural 2020 horticulture competition highlighted an intrinsic commitment to the whenua, awa and people. I look forward to the coming year as once again, we work together to promote passion and good practice, as the kaitiaki of Aotearoa,” Barry O’Neil said.

Ahuwhenua Trophy Management Committee Chair, Nukuhia Hadfield says “in the past decade more Māori have become major investors in the sector and this has resulted in good financial returns and jobs for our people. However, there is still much more to do and I am sure with the positive publicity that the Ahuwhenua Trophy competition generates, this will encourage more Māori to become involved in the sector.”

Nukuhia says in all the major horticultural areas around the country, there is clear evidence that Māori are setting up new horticultural businesses or further developing established ones and are major contributors to a sector which in the past year earned $6.5 billion for the economy of Aotearoa New Zealand.

“I now urge all those Māori enterprises to take the next step and showcase their operations to Aotearoa by entering this competition. It is a unique opportunity to demonstrate the innovation and quality, along with genuine sustainability which sits behind our horticultural businesses,” she says.

Nukuhia Hadfield says for the finalists there is not only the prestige of winning the competition but the added benefits of high-quality feedback they receive on their enterprises.

Entry details, including the entry form are available here. Entries close Friday 9 December and the finalists will be announced in February 2023. After that field days will be held in April/May and the winner will be announced at an awards dinner in Tauranga in June.

For further information contact Peter Burke on 021 2242184 or peterj@true-to-ireland.com To access ‘free for editorial use’ photos of competition go to https://bit.ly/3PWEdX7 and contact John Cowpland from Alphapix for download access on john@alphapix.co.nz.

Our thanks to our valued Ahuwhenua Trophy sponsors:

Te Puni Kōkiri, the Ministry for Primary Industries, Te Tumu Paeroa, BNZ, NZ Mãori Tourism, Horticulture New Zealand, Plant & Food Research, Zespri, Ballance Agri-Nutrients, Fruitfed Supplies, BDO, FMG, Massey University, New Zealand Fruitgrowers Charitable Trust and Kono Wines.

A big thanks also to sponsors of the Ahuwhenua Young Māori Grower Award: Te Puni Kōkiri, Primary ITO, Te Tumu Paeroa and Horticulture New Zealand.

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