Thursday 21 July 2016

International Recognition for Precision Ag Advocate

Here on the H2Grow blog we showcase leading edge precision agriculture technologies and practices often through case studies of growers achieving success through there application. But in today’s post we would like to showcase a true leader in precision agriculture – Craige Mackenzie. Craige is a leading advocate and role model within New Zealand, a pioneer in the adoption of precision farming techniques.

Craige has recently been awarded the 2016 PrecisionAg® Farmer of the Year. This is a huge accolade and NZ should be very proud that the award has gone to one of our own!

The PrecisionAg® Institute recognises outstanding people, programs, and organisations that are making a difference in the precision ag industry. Each year’s winners have devoted their careers to the technology that improves crop production stewardship, agronomy, and efficiency.

Craige and Roz Mackenzie at Greenvale Pastures
Craige’s focus has been on utilising precision agriculture systems to maximise nutrient and irrigation efficiency for improved farm sustainability, both environmental and financial.

Craige and wife Roz farm Greenvale Pastures, a 200ha fully irrigated cropping operation near Methven specialising in vegetable and small seed production. They are also 50:50 equity owners in Three Springs Dairies, a high-output dairy farm with 1,200 milking cows. Their adoption of precision ag technologies has resulted in improved seed quality and yield with reduced inputs.

The utilisation of Growsmart Precision VRI has led to annual water savings of 32% and resulted in vastly improved water management on their variable soils. Resulting in three years of no measured nitrate losses to the groundwater!

In this recent video Craige and Roz share some of their secrets to farming sustainably and profitably through by employing precision ag.

In 2010 Craige and daughter Jemma established Agri Optics Ltd., New Zealand’s first precision agriculture service company providing precision ag tools and services to NZ farming systems with a focus on field sensing (crop sensing and Electro Magnetic soil surveying) and spatial data management solutions. Agri Optics NZ is now recognised as New Zealand’s leading precision agriculture company. And are also coincidentally partners in the H2Grow crusade.

This post has been put together by Sarah Elliot (Lindsay NZ), and I would personally like to congratulate Craige for being recognised with this prestigious award - Congratulations!!