Posted by: rivettingkatetaylor | June 14, 2013

Avery NZ’s top ag communicator

Marlborough farmer Doug Avery is willing to talk to anyone about integrating lucerne into pastoral systems to achieve a leap in productivity and profitability.

His enthusiasm and ability in communicating how he has achieved this with spectacular results on his own property have won him the 2013 Landcorp Agricultural Communicator of the Year.

Doug Avery, left, with Landcorp chairman  Bill Baylis

Doug Avery, left, with Landcorp chairman Bill Baylis

Doug is a regular speaker at farmer meetings, conferences and seminars around the country and also in Australia.

Doug owns and runs Bonaveree, the family farm at Grassmere on the dry East Coast of the South Island. Years of drought resulted in him doing things differently, successfully developing a farm management system that works in sympathy with the land, rather than battling it. The huge success of this work has attracted international acclaim, and continues to influence farmers in dry areas around the country

He has a knack of communicating clearly with humour and common sense that appeals to fellow farmers and in recent years this has diversified to regular slots on farming radio programmes and writing columns for newspapers. He also has a blog that is followed by many farmers around the country.

Doug was selected by an independent panel of judges ahead of several other very worthy recipients to receive this prestigious award, which was announced at an Awards Dinner in Hamilton last night. Doug is a former winner of the South Island Farmer of the Year (2010) and last year was named one of the winners of the inaugural Landcare Ambassador Awards (for dedication and leadership within the field of sustainable land and water management).

The Landcorp Agricultural Communicator of the Year Award is administered by the NZ Guild of Agricultural Journalists and Communicators (of which I am a member – this post is from its press release) and recognises excellence in communicating agricultural issues, events or information.

Landcorp provides a prize of $2500, which is part of a funding package of $7500 in sponsorship for the Guild. The additional funding assists with administration costs, including the Award dinner.

Doug was also presented with a new trophy, pictured above, to be presented to the winner every year with a roll call of previous winners engraved on the back.

Guild President, Jon Morgan, said Doug is a worthy recipient of this year’s award. “He is widely respected for his ability as a farmer. What separates him is his enthusiasm and willingness to talk to others about his methods and his drought-busting farm systems,” he said.

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