Northland farm crowned Best of the Best

Te Awamutu, 11 July 2019

Northland farm, Okaihau Pastoral Holdings Ltd, is the 2019 Dairy Business of the Year Supreme Award winner.  Okaihau, a 367-hectare property milking 1150-1200 cows and producing about 646,000 kilograms of milksolids, is an equity partnership with 17 shareholders.  Okaihau also won the Best Northland Farm Performance award and High Input Farm with Best Financials.

Headlands farm consultant and Okaihau independent director, Paul Martin, said the win is reassuring for the shareholders, most of who do not live in Northland or visit the farm often.

Judges Danny Donaghy from Massey University and Michael Lawrence, director of Naylor Lawrence and Associates, said the awards evening was about celebrating the cream of the dairy industry.  This year the awards were held at the Millennium Hotel in Queenstown with over 100 guests in attendance.

“The dairy industry is always facing challenges from multiple directions.  Payout, climate, banking pressure, regulations, compliance and disease have all existed to varying degrees and continue to be a part of the landscape that the industry operates in”.

They said what defines the industry and its participants is their capacity to cope with those challenges and come out on top.  Judges said to be the Supreme Winner in a year with such tough competition required some very strong metrics.

And for the first time in DBOY’s 12-year history, this year two dairy businesses were named Runner Up.  Richard and Nadine McCullough from McCullough Farm Partnership Ltd from Waikato and Rebecca and Brent Miller from River Terrace Dairy Ltd from Canterbury.

Judges said it was unusual for two runner-up farms to be chosen but the metrics were such they could not be separated.  Both McCullough Farm Partnership and River Terrace Dairy were finalists in both the People Performance and Environmental categories.

All 2019 Regional Winners will be holding Regional Optimisation Days on their farms later this year.  These days highlight how the winning farms have made resilient and profitable systems.

For a full list of the DBOY19 award winners and their KPIs click HERE

For the full story from Dairy Farmer’s July issues click HERE

Dairy Business of the Year - Entries Open

Entries are currently open for the Dairy Business of the Year (DBOY) 2020.  Headlands is proud to be a Gold Sponsor of this premiere dairy event. 

DBOY provides farmers with the opportunity to undertake a high-level analysis of the KPIs within their business that drive profitability, resilience and sustainability, whilst benchmarking themselves against their counterparts. In addition, there is the opportunity to win great prizes, plus the added benefits that come with being engaged with other leading dairy farmers through networking and organised DBOY events.

Visit the DBOY website - to find out more information, our contact your local Headlands Consultant.

Dairy Business of the Year signs new sponsors for 2018

Te Awamutu, 16 February 2018

Dairy Business of the Year (DBOY) announced today that Theland, CRV Ambreed and NZI have come on board as sponsors of the 2018 dairy industry competition.

CRV and NZI have signed on as Bronze sponsors and Theland as a Gold sponsor. They join the prestigious family of existing sponsors.

Justine Kidd, CEO Theland Farm Group, says they are really excited to be a part of Dairy Business of the Year.  “We have been working on a business-wide Talent Strategy and we see incorporating DBOY as a part of our benchmarking as a critical component.  We will be entering the DBOY competition and then working with them to also do an internal process for our own Theland Farm Group Management Awards”

“We are really looking forward to this industry-first initiative and hope that other Corporate Farm Groups will join us in supporting such a great competition event, it can only make our businesses and our industry stronger”.

Along with entering their nationwide farms, Theland will be sponsoring the DBOY18 Supreme Winner’s prize, a trip for two to China hosted by Theland to look at markets, supply chain and consumer trends.  DBOY Chair, Warren Morritt, comments “this is a fantastic way for our best farmers to get in touch with our largest global customer and build knowledge and connections that will help not only their business, but NZ Dairy Inc.”

CRV Ambreed have renewed their sponsorship and support of DBOY.  “We see the benefits for farmers entering DBOY as it’s a great chance to stand back and review their business. In today’s changing environment, dairy farmers need to look forward and plan to ensure they can achieve their goals and the process you go through with DBOY will assist with that”, says Sales and Marketing Manager, Matt Macfie.

NZI are first-time sponsors of DBOY and are delighted to be a part of this unique event which focuses on the business performance and returns that make NZ dairy businesses resilient within the climate that they operate, both locally and globally.  National Manager – Rural, Jon Watson, says “NZI is committed to help Kiwi farms remain sustainable and profitable.  Our team of rural insurance specialists across the country are knowledgeable and passionate about farming. We encourage good farm practice and celebrate awards that recognise it”.

Farmers are encouraged to enter so they can define their business, understand the key drivers of profitability, resilience and sustainability and also benchmark themselves against their counterparts.  Previous entrants have commented on the value of networking with other leading dairy farmers through the DBOY organised events. 

Entries for this year’s competition close 31st March 2018.  Entry information can be found online at

Paul Martin - Dairy Consultant of the Year

9 August 2017

Northland Dairy Consultant Takes Out Top Dairy Award

Paul, from Whangarei, was one of three category winners announced at the Rural Professional of the Year Awards held during New Zealand Institute of Primary Industry Management’s (NZIPIM) Awards Dinner at Lincoln.

In making their final decision, the judges noted that Paul has demonstrated considerable expertise within the dairy industry and they were impressed with his ability to increase the performance and profitability of his farming clients in one of the most difficult farming areas in New Zealand. The judges also liked his proposal to use of prize money in learning more about best international on-farm environment practices in the Netherlands.

Mr Martin said support from his employer and working with very talented farmers played a role in his success.

“I am very grateful to receive this award, it means a lot to be acknowledged by your peers,” he said.

“I am very fortunate to get to work with some extremely talented dairy farmers. I have sometimes compared my role as a farm consultant to that of a professional rugby coach and we all know that even the best rugby coaches don’t get results without a great team of players to work with.”

NZIPIM Chief Executive Stephen Macaulay was impressed with the standard of the candidates.

“The judges were impressed with the quality of applications received for this category. Paul’s application was the standout, with his work in improving the on-farm performance and profitability of his clients that is recognised both locally and nationally,” said Mr Macaulay.

“Paul exemplifies what a great rural professional looks like and is a very worthy recipient of the DairyNZ Dairy Rural Professional of the Year Award,” said Mr Macaulay.

Farmax and the NZIPIM teamed up to organise the 2017 Rural Professional of the Year Awards, and wish to acknowledge the support for the awards by DairyNZ, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, Farmax and the Ministry for Primary Industries.


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