Monday, 14 May 2012 15:00

Hoof and Hook champs

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Three months of commitment paid off last weekend with Taratahi students winning a major award and a collection of ribbons at the annual Future Beef NZ 'Hoof and Hook' at Manfeild Stadium, Feilding.

A total of 35 students from three Taratahi campuses entered twenty-one steers.

Taratahi Wairarapa was thrilled to take the PBBNZ Award for Excellence in Beef Industry Training. "We were really pleased with the win – there's a little bit of in-house rivalry! But at the end of the day Taratahi students have come out on top," says Simon Bailey, Taratahi Tutor and Wairarapa Campus Hoof and Hook coordinator.

"Not only have they used this competition to develop a deeper understanding of stockmanship which will help them in their agricultural careers, they have made some excellent industry contacts and learnt a lot through the training modules they completed during this Hoof and Hook weekend."

Taratahi cleaned up in the senior novice handling class: first place went to Sara Jex, second place to Cameron Mckie and third place to Rian Bovill.

In the intermediate novice handling class first place went to Stacey Hill and Emmy Lou Mabey received a highly commended. Hill took second place in the pure bred lightweight steer class and topped off a great day with an award for her positive behaviour at the event, the highly commended award for attitude.

Taratahi Taranaki took a second in the cross bred lightweight steer class and student Nga Apaapa received a highly commended in the senior novice handling class.

"It's been a big weekend. I am so proud of the way all our students handled themselves and their steers at this competition. I have heard lots of great comments about their professionalism and competence from the public and the Future Beef organising committee. It's a great opportunity for students and staff from each of our campuses to work together and it was brilliant to see them co-operate so well," says Bailey.

This is the fifth year of the event which aims to inspire and educate young people about the beef industry, develop skills and pass on knowledge. Entrants break, handle and raise their steers, which are then judged in the ring 'on the hoof' and for the quality of the meat 'on the hook'. As part of the weekend competition students have learnt about aspects of beef management from industry experts, including animal health, feed budgeting, a 'ready, steady, cook' competition, stock judging and meat grading.

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