B+LNZ Award categories

The B+LNZ Award categories celebrate both the people and the businesses contributing and creating impact in the sheep and beef sector. There are eight categories which fall under People Awards or Business of Farming Awards. Entries are open, nominate your local hero!

People awards

AgResearch Emerging Achiever Award

 This award recognises those who are under 30 years and are working in the sheep and beef sector. They demonstrate future leadership/development potential and have already had a positive impact on the sector and/or their local community. This may be through involvement in the community and/or on-farm with new ideas and initiatives. Individual entries or nominations are welcome.

The recipient of this award will be relatively new to the workforce or sector, but already demonstrating future leadership potential. Already impacting through new ideas, influencing others, improving farm productivity, profitability or business diversity, the individual will show the potential to continue to impact in the future.

Rabobank People Development Award

This award recognises a farmer or farming operation who deliver formal or informal people development opportunities through capability building and engagement of staff and/or trainees.

Delivering formal or informal training, coaching or mentoring, this award recognises an individual, team or business who attracts and retains trainees, staff (including farm staff) or students through their approach to recruitment retention and development of people.

Alliance Significant Contribution Award

This award recognises excellence in science and research activities that are of direct relevance and benefit to the sheep and beef sector. This could include, but not limited to, animal health and welfare, advancements in agronomy, biodiversity enhancement, environmental science, data science, genetics and social science.

Delivering excellence in science and research activities that are of direct relevance and benefit to the sheep & beef sector, the winners of this award will be developing or discovering new processes or products that contribute, but are not limited to, animal health and welfare, advancements in agronomy, biodiversity enhancement, environmental science, data science, genetics or social science.

FMG Rural Champion Award

This award celebrates an individual or group who, through their activities, are championing the rural sector OR contributing to the wellbeing of farmers or farming communities.

The winner of this award will have contributed to either changing or improving the image of the sheep and beef sector among other farmers, urban community and/or consumers OR are or have had an impact on the wellbeing of farmers and their farming community through their programmes and activities.

Farm business handshake

Ballance Science & Research Award

This award recognises an individual or team of scientists or researchers whose science and research activities have contributed to a more profitable, productive and sustainable sheep and beef sector.

Delivering excellence in science and research activities that are of direct relevance and benefit to the sheep & beef sector, the winners of this award will be developing or discovering new processes or products that contribute, but are not limited to, animal health and welfare, advancements in agronomy, biodiversity enhancement, environmental science, data science, genetics or social science.

Datamars Livestock Technology Award

This award recognises excellence, by an individual or team, who are developing (or have developed) technologies which will increase on-farm productivity,  profitability and sustainability in the sheep and beef sector.

The technology developed and implemented will have identified and is solving an on-farm problem or need. This could include, but is not limited to, real-time monitoring on farm, software applications, satellite technologies, decision-making tools, GIS, and automation.

Gallagher Innovative Farming Award

This award recognises farmers and farming operations who are demonstrating outside-the-box thinking to develop new farming systems, tools/products or processes that will benefit the farm business and could be applied more widely in the sector.


Demonstrating ‘outside-the-box thinking, the farmer or farming operation will have (or in process of completing) developed a new farming system, tools or processes that will benefit the business and/or farm environment and may have the potential to be scaled up for wider sector impact.

Silver Fern Farms Market Leader Award

This award recognises a farmer or farming business demonstrating solutions, ideas or products which meet consumer needs either through partnership with their processor or direct to a market.

Understanding consumer needs and market trends, this farmer or farming business demonstrates adaption of farm systems/ practices and application of innovative solutions and ideas to meet consumer demand, either through their processor or direct to a market.

Award judging

  • All judging is carried out by assessment of the information provided in the entry/nomination form. There is no on-farm or in-person judging, so it important to write to the award criteria and include as much detail as possible in the entry/nomination form. If applicable, we also encourage you to submit supporting data.
  • Please ensure to notify your nominee that you have put them forward for an award.  A follow up call will be made with all nominated entrants to validate and get further information if required, so please ensure that your nominee is aware of this. 
  • Independent Judges Panel review and pre score all entries against weighted judging criteria.
  • Judges panel meet to shortlist finalists for all categories.
  • A further follow up call to nominee/s may be conducted if required.