The tractor and machinery industry is welcoming a challenge by the Minister of Agriculture to train New Zealanders rather than continue relying on seasonal migrant workers.
Nowadays these workhorses of the land have more exterior curves than Marilyn Monroe, and interior finishes that would make automobile makers cry.
One such 'modern' tractor, the Valtra T234 from AGCO, recently won a prestigious Red Dot Design Award for 2016, competing against 5200 entries from 57 countries judged by 41 independent design professionals from around the world.
The Valtra T4 series, resulting from seven years R&D, is the first of a new generation in which technical innovations and a whole new look are brought together.
The clean exterior lines look good, and underlying design work has focused on usability, ergonomics, safety, durability, serviceability and, ultimately, the productivity of the machine.
Incidentally, fourth-generation Valtra have also won international awards including Machine of The Year 2015.