The problems at Taratahi were laid open, prior to its interim liquidation in December, in August last year.
Taratahi upped its marketing and as a result, the definite enrolments for 2018 are looking great, says chief executive Arthur Graves.
“Taratahi and the wider primary industry have been promoting the job rich agricultural environments and extensive career pathways on offer and those campaigns are now yielding some great results.
The institution is also adapting its farming systems in response to consumer demands for greater visibility over the provenance of their food.
“For instance, this year Taratahi is introducing “sexed” bull semen that almost solely produces female calves – negating the need for the bobby calf trade which is becoming less acceptable to the public. Our aim is to use this innovation to ensure we have zero bobby calves on all our dairy farms.
“It also means our students are exposed to some of the latest on farm methods while educating them about “bigger picture” of where farming is heading with lower input, more animal welfare friendly, environmentally friendly, traceable, natural food.
“We have also worked hard to attract prospective students from the city, by showing them there are a range of interesting career options in what is now a very complex and rewarding sector.”
This has resulted in strong demand for Taratahi’s 2018 courses with more students already enrolled in a range of programmes for 2018 at Taratahi’s nine campuses around the country than at the same time in 2017.
Graves says it is finding that students are keen for a different experience in another region - so many of Telford and Wairarapa residential campus students are coming from all over NZ.
“An extra area of business is the increasing demand from agricultural service organisations seeking practical on farm experiences for their staff and we anticipate this market will continue to expand.”
Farm insurance companies, Farm advisors and government departments who deal with Primary sector and health and safety issues, are a growing customer base for our tailored farm experience and team building programmes.
“That means that Taratahi is providing an on farm education and experience that gives policy makers and influencers a chance to learn the practicalities of modern farming methods while mixing with students who will be tomorrow’s farm leaders,” he says.