This blog is going to be a little light this week. The Wharf42 team are hitting Central District Field Days in Palmerston North and Manawatu to celebrate New Zealand Agri Investment Week 2016.

It’s going to be a week when the team focuses on investment in New Zealand’s Agriculture sector; investment in capital raising, investment in innovation, including sustainability, and investment in talent.

Central Districts Field Days

Celebrating New Zealand AgTech excellence at Central Districts Field Days

The week is made up of five cornerstone events: Central District Field Days, 2016 New Zealand Agribusiness Investment Showcase, Perspective 2025, New Zealand Future Farms Conference and the Sheep Milk New Zealand Conference. With the imminent SVForum AgTech Program coming up next month, the 2016 New Zealand Agribusiness Investment Showcase is the stand-out event for me.

The showcase is taking place at Orlando Country in Palmerston North on Thursday. The event is being hosted by New Zealand Trade & Enterprise (NZTE) in partnership with ASB. One new feature this year will be the presence of qualifying companies emerging from the Sprout AgTech Accelerator Program. In all, 15 Kiwi AgTech businesses will be pitching to a room filled with qualified investors and potential business partners. I believe it will offer real insight into the strength and opportunity of the emerging AgTech sector.

On Friday, we will be attending the main Central District Field Days in Fielding. Given the recent (and immediate) challenges facing the dairy sector, it is going to be an interesting day. Our hosts for the week, Richard & Tracey, own a dairy farm on Kimbolton Road just outside Fielding, so we will no doubt already be up to speed with their perspective of both the present and the future.

At Field Days, I’m looking forward to meeting up with the ASB Agri Capital team at their stand. Following the recent visit to New Zealand by the US Dairy Club, it will be an opportunity to compare just how banks are addressing the current challenges facing the dairy sector in both countries. Plus looking forward.

The different events being organised around New Zealand Agri Investment Week will provide more context for the ‘Future of AgTech’ presentation I am giving at the University of Waikato Alumni evening on 5 April. One week later, Jacqui and I fly to San Francisco to help prepare for the arrival of 25 Kiwi AgTech businesses to the Valley for the SVForum AgTech Immersion Program and Conference. An exciting month ahead then.

Going back to the core themes of the week; investment in capital raising, investment in innovation, including sustainability, and investment in talent. The New Zealand Agri Investment Week program provides an opportunity to change some of the current negative sentiment around the sector into something that is much more positive. My own expectation is that the next few days will achieve that. The investment and innovation focus of the week will help drive and grow New Zealand’s agriculture sector. Including dairy.

You can follow more regular updates of our Central District Field Days experiences via the Wharf42 Twitter feed at @Wharf42HQ

If you want to meet, please ping me at It would be good to connect.