Thursday, 29 February 2024 11:55

Primary sector the backbone of Manawatu's economy

Written by  Helen Worboys
Manawatu District Mayor Helen Worboys. Manawatu District Mayor Helen Worboys.

OPINION: As a farmer myself, I believe there is nothing more valuable than the resources of our land and those who work it.

On the brightest of days when there has been enough rain, enough sun, high enough payouts, and low enough interest rates, it can be the most rewarding of careers and yet like all things, the cycle fluctuates and some days it feels harder and more challenging than others. Yet, as farmers we know that just as the seasons change, so does the industry and once again the wave will right itself if we show the perseverance to ride it.

As an industry, the primary sector is the backbone to the New Zealand economy, and this is true for the Manawatū District. Our district is fortunate to have a large spectrum of agricultural contributors with dairy production being the largest primary sector contributor to our local economy.

With vast, rugged and productive land, agribusiness is fluent in both rural and urban areas. Feilding boasts the largest stock saleyards in the Southern Hemisphere, situated in the town centre. These saleyards attract buyers and sellers from around NZ on a biweekly basis and are a key contributor to our local retail, hospitality and professional business community.

Feilding is also the district hub for agricultural businesses hosting depots and regional offices for many.

These businesses employ reps from across the district while supporting our local economy in much the same way as the saleyards.

The development in technology continues to progress and so must our primary sector here in the Manawatū District. The CD Field Days hosted at Manfield in March is a much-anticipated celebration of the industry and helps to showcase new inventions and old farm favourites.

The event unites rural and urban residents while endorsing the importance of the primary sector throughout the district. It’s a time for farming families to take a break from the farm, to reconnect to others in the industry and for urban residents, a chance to see firsthand and appreciate just how important the primary sector is within the Manawatū District.

It’s an industry that is becoming more respected and certainly one that New Zealand and the Manawatū District wouldn’t manage without.

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