Monday, 04 July 2016 13:06

Waimea Plains fruit grower named Nelson’s best

Written by 
Tom Dalziel (left) receiving his award from competition's coordinator, and local orchardist, Andrew Kininmonth. Tom Dalziel (left) receiving his award from competition's coordinator, and local orchardist, Andrew Kininmonth.

Tom Dalziel, 27, from Thomas Bros in Riwaka has beaten off tough competition from four other entrants to be crowned Nelson's Young Fruit Grower for 2016 at Friday night's gala dinner.

The day-long competition at Hoddy's Orchard in Nelson on Friday saw competitors battle it out in a series of practical and theoretical challenges designed to test the skills needed to run a successful export-focused orchard.

Dalziel, 27, works as an Orchard Supervisor at Thomas Bros. As well as taking out the title of the region's Young Fruit Grower, Dalziel received top marks for the First Aid, Human Resources, Orchard Analysis activities as well as winning the Speech section.

Dalziel won a cash prize of $1,500 and an all-expenses paid trip to represent Nelson at the national Young Grower of the Year in three weeks' time.

"It was a tough battle against some of the region's most capable young growers," Dalziel says. "I'm looking forward to competing at the national final and will be stepping up my preparation over the next few weeks."

Second place went to Ralph Bastian (28) from Wai West Horticulture. Rowan Inwood (24) from Hoddys Orchard was awarded third place.

"The Young Fruit Grower competition showcases and celebrates our industry's top young talent each year. We're very fortunate to have such loyal and passionate sponsors who support the event and assist in the development of our industry's future leaders by testing the contestants knowledge and skills," says the competition's coordinator, and local orchardist, Andrew Kininmonth.

"Tom and his fellow competitors are great examples of the young people who are entering horticulture. The future growth of our industry is dependent on our ability to attract young growers like Tom who are highly skilled and enthusiastic.

"We wish him all the best as he prepares to compete in the national competition in a few weeks' time," said Mike Chapman, chief executive of Horticulture New Zealand, which runs the national competition.

The winners from five regional events go forward to contest the final.

The competition is part of Horticulture New Zealand's strategy to support the growth and development of New Zealand's future grower leaders.

More like this

Vintage 2021 - Nelson

Nelson was dealt a significantly low fruit set and crop this year, says Andrew Greenhough, with yields of Greenhough Vineyards' home block down by 30 to 40 percent.

Changes in Nelson's wine industry

There have been a few changes in the normally very stable Nelson wine industry in recent months, most notably the sale of the beleaguered former Mahana winery and restaurant facility along with the sale of vineyard land.

Farms hit by Nelson fires

Six commercial farms have been destroyed by the huge fire in the hills southwest of Nelson, according to Federated Farmers.


Labour pains hurt grower

Despite struggling to find workers, fresh produce grower and trader T&G is still forging ahead with growth plans.

China demands, NZ delivers

Meat Industry Association chair John Loughlin says China is one of the most demanding export markets in the world.

Machinery & Products

Making lamb marking easy

Designed by a sheep and beef farmer, Vetmarkers are made in New Zealand and sold around the world.

A big tractor needed

German cultivation and seeding manufacturer Amazone has launched a new semimounted plough range, suitable for tractors in the 400hp class.

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Murky waters

OPINION: Your canine crusader knows there is a great deal of unease - especially in rural NZ - about the…


OPINION: The refusal of both Damien O'Connor and PM Jacinda Ardern to release some of the correspondence they received about…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter