First time competitor Jake Jarman, 24, has been named FMG Young Farmer of the Year 2021.
Jake, who is a relationship associate at Ashburton ANZ, was representing Taranaki Manawatu region for the contest’s 53rd season.
He beat six other grand finalists at in Christchurch, including Aorangi finalist Dale McAlwee, of Pendarves Young Farmers.
Joseph Watts, of Tikokino Young Farmers, was named runner up FMG Young Farmer of the Year and Calvin Ball, of Whangarei Young Farmers, was third.
Jake was overwhelmed and excited ‘‘and relieved that it’s over!’’
‘‘I’m just also so incredibly thankful to so many people, far too many to name but it’s a huge team of people to pull together this event and a big team behind me to get me here too.”
He was determined to give the grand final his best shot despite being hindered by a broken arm during a rugby game in the lead up to the grand final event.
“I was happy that I gave everything a go to the best of my ability and (was) competitive. I loved the practical day, the challenge of having to multitask under time pressure and be a bit strategic,” he said.
Jake won a prize package worth over $75,000, which included a $15,000 cash prize from FMG, a Honda ATV, and a $30,000 package from New Holland.
The FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year title was won by Mount Hutt College students Sophie Adkins and Eddie Millichamp.
They were one of 14 nationwide teams to compete in the prestigious grand final. Second place went to Jono Harris and Alex Wyeth, from Rathkeale College, and third place to Tayla Hansen, of St Paul’s Collegiate and Tim Lumsden, of Hamilton Boys’ High School.
Both Sophie and Eddie are in their final year of high school and are heading to Lincoln University next year.
They worked well together and were stoked with their win which saw them each win $300 from FMG, a prize pack to the value of $500 from Massey University, $500 Hunting and Fishing voucher from Lincoln University and a Bunnings pack.
Sophie said the speech was both a challenge and a highlight. The duo’s topic was on land use and soil types. The top five teams from the practical day went into “the face-off” – a famous FMG Young Farmer of the Year buzzer styled quiz – which saw students asked anything from the colour of a flight recorder in a plane to the correct depth for soil testing.
The AgriKidsNZ competition was won by Blue Mountain College pupils, second Hereworth School and third South Makirikiri School.