Celebrating the next generation of NZ’s Food and Fibre Sector

// Awards

The recent Lincoln University Food and Fibre Awards showcased the bright young minds who aspire to enter New Zealand’s red meat sector workforce.

image of food and fibre award winners

The evening provided over 180 university students the opportunity to network with industry professionals and ask questions about career opportunities. In total, 260 guests mixed and mingled during the course of the evening discussing the industry’s future. 

For the second year in a row, Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) proudly co-sponsored these awards that recognised leading students in food and fibre and provided an opportunity to promote the sheep and beef sector to future graduates whilst they are thinking about career decisions.   

“New Zealand’s food and fibre sector is in a dynamic and challenging period, and it was fantastic to be in a position to honour some of our best and brightest students with these awards,” says National Extension Programme Manager Olivia Weatherburn who attended the event alongside B+LNZ’s Northern South Island Extension Manager Kristin Kirkpatrick. 

The evening commenced with a networking session. “This provided students with the opportunity to meet prospective employers across the food and fibre sectors and make an impression,” explains Weatherburn. 

“What an impressive collection of young people we have coming into our industry. They are pursuing all sorts of different food and fibre pathways. I really enjoyed hearing their plans, passion and enthusiasm for agriculture,” says Kirkpatrick.   

Weatherburn adds, “I was blown away by the passion and enthusiasm from these young people for the industry. They have some very exciting ideas and I have no doubt the sector will be in good hands.” 
During the dinner, several key speakers emphasised some crucial messages that resonated deeply with both students and industry players.  

“My key takeaways from the talks are that people are our biggest asset, it is important to network, ask for help when you need it and jump outside of your comfort zones something we talk about often and it was great to hear this message still being at the top ,” says Weatherburn.  

About B+LNZ’s People and Training work 

B+LNZ invests in and supports growing, training and retaining people in New Zealand’s red meat industry. We do this by collaborating with others to extend our reach and make a greater impact such as the Food and Fibre Awards. 

Learn more about B+LNZ’s People and Training work.

fibre and food awards dinner