Rural Leaders New Zealand

The Rural Leader

January 2023

Welcome to the first issue of the Rural Leader newsletter for 2023. 

We’re told attention spans are getting shorter – even for the smartest of us. Apparently it’s because we’re gorging on social soundbites 24-7. So, in this issue we’re putting pithy in priority position. 

In our Ideas that Grow Podcast, we hear from 2018 Nuffield Scholar, Kate Scott. Part of the 2023 Rural Leaders Agribusiness Summit management team, Kate talks to Bryan Gibson of Farmers Weekly in this slightly shorter than usual podcast, about what you can expect from the Summit.  

A new Kellogg cohort began their leadership journeys last week on Lincoln Programme One (K49). Friday’s Presentation and Facilitation workshop was joined by the 2023 Nuffield Scholars, well underway with their programme and travel planning. 

We share the final reports from Kellogg Lincoln, Programme Two, 2022. These Scholar reports cover topics ranging from: women in leadership, regenerative viticulture, environmental compliance, through to career development, the fresh produce supply chain, herd monitoring technology, and more.

This year’s Kellogg Lincoln, Programme Two, is filling steadily. If you do intend to apply, we encourage you to get your application in early for this June start programme. Applications close 16 April.

Early bird tickets for the 2023 Rural Leaders Agribusiness Summit are now closed, however ticket sales at the standard rate continue until sold out – or until Summit day on the 27 March.

This one-day industry forum will take place at the Christchurch Town Hall. It boasts a line-up of influential national and international speakers, panels, together with debate, discussion and networking. Secure your seat today. 

In Alumni in the Spotlight this month, 2020 Nuffield Scholar Phil Weir talks to Farmers Weekly on the need to move farm systems away from using supplements over drier months by adding summer-safe forage mixtures. 

Jenni Vernon reflected on a career of learning and leadership with the Rural News late last year. Jenni was New Zealand’s first female Nuffield Scholar (1994) and was also a 1985 Kellogg Scholar. 

We hope you enjoy this issue of the Rural Leader. 

The Team at Rural Leaders. 

Ideas that grow podcast.

Kate Scott: Meeting food and fibre’s challenges, together.

Kate Scott is a 2018 Nuffield Scholar who works at the intersection of farming, the environment and regulation.

Kate talks to Bryan Gibson, Farmers Weekly Editor, about why the 2023 Rural Leaders Agribusiness Summit’s timing and offering should be of high value to farmers, producers, and agribusiness professionals.

Listen to the podcast below or follow this link to read the transcript.

Fonterra and CLAAS get behind Forefront Rural Leaders Agribusiness Summit.

Fonterra Logo
Claas logo

Industry support for the Summit continues to grow. Making the Summit possible, this support includes Platinum Sponsors Fonterra and CLAAS, as well as Gold Sponsors AGMARDT, FMG and MPI.  

Of their sponsorship of the Summit, Fonterra Regional Manager, Anna Taylor says, “…a unique opportunity for the brightest minds in agribusiness to come together and share local and international case studies as well as brainstorm practical ideas for the future.” 

Read the full article here. 
To book your seat today head to 

Nuffield Triennial International Conference.

The Nuffield Triennial site is now live. Visit us here

Triennial dates: Friday, 24 March – Sunday, 2 April 2023

Agribusiness Summit date: Monday, 27 March 2023

For more information on the Agribusiness Summit click here and here.

Sponsorship. If you would like to know more about partnering with us, please contact John Wright at

2023 Nuffield Scholar and his research in the spotlight.

James Allen, one of the four 2023 Nuffield Scholars, was recently interviewed for the Rural News about receiving a Nuffield Scholarship and his research topic.

Find out about more James’ planned research topic ‘Defining the role of the Agricultural Consultant for the next generation’ in the article below.

Kellogg Phase One, Lincoln.

2023’s Programme One have just completed their nine-day (eight-night) residential Phase One module at Lincoln University.  

For those who may be planning to participate in June’s Programme Two, here’s a summary of what to expect on Phase One ‘Leadership tools and industry contexts’.

Kellogg Programme Two, Lincoln: 13 June – 30 November 2023 

Applications for Programme Two, 2023 are open. You can register your interest or apply at This Programme will mark fifty Kellogg cohorts since 1979. 

Phase One (Lincoln):  Tuesday 13 June – Wednesday 21 June 2023. 
Phase Two (Wellington):  Monday 11 September – Friday 15 September 2023. 
Phase Three (Lincoln):  Monday 27 November – Thursday 30 November 2023. 

Final Kellogg reports - Programme Two, 2022 (K48)

Our most recent completing Kellogg cohort graduated late last year. Their reports cover topics ranging from: women in leadership, regenerative viticulture, environmental compliance, through to career development, the fresh produce supply chain, and herd monitoring technology.  

Kellogg 48

We also share Matt Strahan’s (K46) final report, ‘Could herbicide resistance reduce the growth potential of our primary industries’? Matt’s report is shared in the Rural Leader for the first time. 

On his report, Matt says: 

“This report aims to highlight the emerging threat of herbicide resistance to New Zealand agriculture and our economy.  

To raise awareness of this issue more widely and offer potential strategies on how NZ might mitigate the financial and social impacts, this report compares NZ’s current situation to other countries with examples on how this has been managed successfully. 

My report also highlights the need to develop cross-sector strategies and collaborate regionally to support farmers, so they continue to be innovative and sustainable food producers.”

Alumni in the spotlight.

In this month’s Alumni in the Spotlight, we play catch up with Jenni Vernon’s September Rural News article. 

Phil Weir speaks to New Zealand Herald’s Delwyn Dickey (The Country) and Farmers Weekly about a trial he was involved in with AgResearch on mixed summer forage for cattle.

Jenni Vernon reflected on a career of learning and leadership with the Rural News. Jenni was New Zealand’s first female Nuffield Scholar (1994) and was also a 1985 Kellogg Scholar.

Read the article here.

With pasture quality falling during mid-and-late-summer, Waikato farmer and recent Nuffield Scholar Phil Weir took part in a trial which explored mixed-species, single-graze forage crops that can fill the feed gap.

Read the article here.

News from our Partners.

LIC banks farmers’ uptake of genetics.

In the article Murray King says, “Like many other businesses we have been challenged during this time by staff shortages, a weaker Kiwi dollar and rising costs associated with record inflation. 
But we are pleased to confirm we remain on track to achieve a strong result at year-end and keep up the positive momentum from our previous years’ performance.” 
Read the article here.

Join New Zealand’s national open farm day.

Hosting an Open Farms event is open to all food and fibre producers. Farmer hosts choose the size, format and focus of their event.  

To support farmers to host an open day, Open Farms streamline the process with a range of hosting planning tools, full marketing support, a ‘box of kit’ and more.  

Open Farms is sponsored by Beef + Lamb New Zealand, the Our Land and Water National Science Challenge and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Food & Fibre Futures fund. Post 

Let’s help urban Kiwis reconnect with our land, food & farmers.  

Register to host or visit a farm at 

sponsored by

Beef+Lamb New Zealand

AWDT programmes for 2023.

Ready to learn, grow, connect or lead in 2023? Develop the mindset, skills, confidence and connections to build stronger businesses, careers and communities? 

The Agri-Women’s Development Trust have a way to get you there with registrations for 2023 programmes now open.

The 2023 Programme Guide gives an overview of each programme – the topics covered, who they’re designed for and where and when they’re running. 

Registration for individuals, farming and growing partners can be made at – or get in touch with AWDT if you have a group or team to register.

Leadership opportunities

Editor – NZGrower and The Orchardist Magazines.

The magazines are the official magazines of Horticulture New Zealand, for vegetable growers (NZGrower) and orchardists (The Orchardist). The magazines have a combined print circulation of about 7,000 New Zealand-wide and internationally. The magazines exist to inform growers about what’s happening in their industry, both behind the farm gate and politically. 

Send us your feedback.

We’d like to know what you think of the Rural Leader and of you have any ideas on how we could improve it. 

Our programmes work in partnership with some of New Zealand’s leading agribusiness organisations – click here for more.​