5 Mar 2009

Dairy farm couple win Bay of Plenty award

1:59 pm on 5 March 2009

A Galatea dairy farming couple have taken the top award in the Bay of Plenty farm environment awards.

Judges described Paul and Joanna McCarthy's operation as "almost the perfect situation one could wish for when farming".

Judges said they ran a profitable farming unit developed over 23 years of hard work and farmed in a very environmentally conscientious manner.

Trees in paddocks and along paddock-riparian boundaries provide shade for the stock. In some areas away from watercourses, stock are able to wander into ring-fenced thickets of trees.

The McCarthys also built a series of ponds to attract and accommodate waterfowl. Dabchick and Scaup now breed there every year.

Judges noted how the soils on the home farm have improved significantly over the past 23 years, with a substantial increase in organic matter.