An estimated 2,500 urban Kiwis visited 24 farms this Sunday, part of New Zealand’s third national open farm day initiative Open Farms.
Farms of all types participated in the nationwide project, from market gardens in Auckland, to dairy farms in the Waikato, regenerative sheep and beef farms near Wellington and organic veges in Christchurch.
“This was a tough year for farmer hosts, so we really appreciate them giving urban Kiwis the chance to touch, feel and taste their way back into food & farming” says Open Farms founder Daniel Eb.
Successive weather events in the project’s target areas around NZ’s major cities impacted host numbers, but visitor interest remained high. “About two-thirds of our events were fully booked this year - again proving that, when given the chance, urban Kiwis are keen to get back out on-farm” says Eb.
Up in Auckland, The Singh family at Kingseat Organics hosted more than 300 people for a day exploring organic vege production, meeting animals and planting native trees. “We had 30-metre-long lines of people through the vege beds at times and everyone was so engaged to learn about where their food comes – it was a great day” says farmer Malkiat Singh.
One of the largest 2023 events took place at Mangaroa Farms, a sheep & beef farm and market garden aiming to become a local food hub for their Upper Hutt community – farmer Jules Matthews referred to their open day simply as “awesome”.
Open Farms is backed by three sponsors – Beef + Lamb New Zealand, the Our Land and Water National Science Challenge and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Food & Fibre Futures fund.
For more information and to sign up for next year, prospective farmer hosts and visitors can visit www.openfarms.co.nz
About Open Farms
Open Farms is a platform to reconnect Kiwis with the people and places that grow our food. It’s a grassroots initiative encouraging farmers from all sectors to host Open Farm day experiences as part of a national open farm day. The platform provides farmers with event guidance, visitor marketing and registration support and connects visitors to Open Farm days via a booking system at www.openfarms.co.nz. The platform is independently run by Open Farms Ltd, with support from sponsors Beef + Lamb New Zealand, the Our Land and Water National Science Challenge and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Food & Fibre Futures fund.
For more information, contact Daniel Eb on +64 27 586 0884 or email@example.com