Farmers and growers need to rattle their dags for this year’s Ballance Farm Environment Awards (BFEA), with entries closing on October 31.
Saunders, chairman of New Zealand Farm Environment (NZFE) Trust, says challenges facing the sector include issues surrounding water quality and nutrient loss.
Therefore, the relevance of the NZFE Trust and the BFEA could not be greater, he says.
"It's critical that the farmer's voice is heard. The BFEA programme is continually doing this through entrants and award-winning farmers showcasing what they are achieving, sharing the knowledge ideas and skills that will drive better environmental, economic and social outcomes for New Zealand's most important sector."
According to the NZFE Trust's annual report, released this week, it celebrated another successful year.
The organisation has continued to grow through 2015, with another region- Auckland- signing up.
"We are delighted to have the Auckland region in the Awards for the 2016 programme," says Saunders.
"Having Auckland on board is a huge step towards being able to offer a complete national programme. We are almost there."
NZFE Trust also formalised a long standing partnership between Environment Southland and the BFEA. Saunders says the Trust is looking forward to developing this partnership further "to not only benefit the continued success of the BFEA in Southland, but all agriculture in Southland".
Nationally, the BFEA programme continues to draw accolades and capture strong media interest. Farmer attendance at BFEA field days across the country was outstanding, and these field days and other NZFE Trust events "keep delivering the very important messages on what New Zealand farmers are achieving".