7 Mar 2009

More Maori needed in farming careers, says iwi head

9:25 am on 7 March 2009

The chair of Ngati Kahungunu, Ngahiwi Tomoana, wants to see more Maori back on the land.

Mr Tomoana says promising rangatahi have been steered more recently into careers in business, law or medicine, while farming, where Maori assets are concentrated, has been neglected.

He would like to see the revival of specialist farm training so young Maori can learn to manage land and take advantage of opportunities created by the ageing rural workforce.

Mr Tomoana says the opportunities are not restricted to Maori land, since farming has also become less attractive to Pakeha.

He says many Maori horticultural and agricultural ventures are leasing Pakeha land to create economies of scale.