14 April 2020
2020 finalists: Tony & Lynda Gray of Kinross Partnership - Sheep, Beef and Deer Breeding.
This family-operated sheep, beef and deer breeding operation is very much focused on maximising returns in an environmentally sustainable way. A lot of development work has been carried out since Tony and Lynda took possession in 2004, including the adoption of new technologies and systems.
The Grays entered the Ballance Farm Environment Awards because they wanted feedback on the significant improvements they have made, plus guidance for the future.
Kinross runs 1,260 sheep, 100 beef and 420 deer, with the Grays finishing most of their own lambs. They take great care of their environment and livestock - always trying to improve the way they do things. Kinross was the first farm to complete an Horizons Whole Farm Plan and over the past 14 years this has included planting more than 1,000 poplar poles and 6ha of Douglas fir.
The judges were impressed with the couple’s commitment to the environment since purchasing the property that incorporates 125ha of QEII-covenanted regenerating native bush. The Grays treasure this feature and love hearing the birds it attracts and seeing the native trees flourish.
They’re in the process of fencing off the last waterway and are planning to isolate wetlands and carry out riparian planting. They have started investigating carbon farming options and are working with a local beekeeper who has hives on the farm. Their possum control programme includes poisoning and trapping.
The Grays are proud of the improvements they have made both in terms of livestock production and environmental protection, and feel they are starting to reap financial rewards from their years of hard work.
The judges commended them for the significant development work they’ve carried out on what is a tidy, well-established farm, plus were impressed with the Gray’s quick uptake of new technologies and systems.