Farmers elect representative to DairyNZ board

20 October 2021

Dairy farmer representative Jacqueline Rowarth was re-elected to DairyNZ’s board at its livestreamed Annual General Meeting (AGM) today.

DairyNZ chair Jim van der Poel says the board is looking forward to Jacqueline re-joining them for the next three years, during an exciting phase as the board oversees the delivery of the new DairyNZ strategy for farmers.

Jacqueline is returning as a DairyNZ board member. She has a Bachelors degree in Agricultural Science with honours in Environmental Agriculture, and a PhD in Soil Science from Massey University. She has worked in research, education, management and governance across universities and research organisations.

Jacqueline is also past president of the New Zealand Institute of Agricultural and Horticultural Science, and of the New Zealand Grassland Association. In 2008 she was awarded Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to agricultural science.

Jacqueline will re-join the four other farmer-elected directors and the board-appointed directors on DairyNZ’s board.

At the AGM, Mr van der Poel also announced the resignation of Jo Coughlan as an independent director, for personal reasons and to focus on other commitments.

“Jo’s public relations expertise has been invaluable during her term on the board, especially as we have put a greater focus on meeting the needs of our farmers and telling dairy’s story to the public.”

This year’s AGM celebrated dairy’s achievements during a busy and often challenging year, and shared highlights from DairyNZ’s Annual Report.

“Dairy continues to play an important role in New Zealand’s economy as Covid-19 continues to affect our communities. Every Kiwi is benefiting from dairy’s contribution to our country,” said Mr van der Poel.

“Covid-19 has also affected farmers beyond the farm gate, exacerbating staff shortages. DairyNZ has been strongly advocating for immigration policy changes to help address this issue.

“We were pleased to see that thousands of dairy workers can now apply for residency, following some hard work by DairyNZ, Federated Farmers and farmers to push the urgency of migrant workers being able to settle in New Zealand.”

Mr van der Poel said another of the year’s highlights had been The Vision is Clear campaign sharing stories about the work farmers are doing nationwide to protect the environment and seeing this shift people’s perceptions of dairy farmers.

The meeting also covered the latest science DairyNZ has underway to support farmers to improve profitability and reduce their environmental impact.

For more information on DairyNZ’s Annual Report, visit dairynz.co.nz/agm.

Media contact

Vanessa Feaver
Senior Manager Media Team
027 836 6295
vanessa.feaver@dairynz.co.nz