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A leading advocate for biosecurity and a 30-year contributor to organisations that support growers have been honoured in Timaru.
Time was set aside at last week's Federated Farmers Arable Industry conference to recognise the men - former Foundation for Arable Research (Far) CEO Nick Pyke and North Canterbury farmer Syd Worsfold.
Mr Pyke was presented with the Federated Farmers Arable Biosecurity Farmer of the Year Award and Mr Worsfold was named Federated Farmers Arable Farmer of the Year in recognition of his contribution over the past 30 years to the arable industry and stakeholder groups, Federated Farmers, Far and United Wheatgrowers.
Newly elected arable chairwoman Karen Williams said Mr Pyke had always been a strong advocate for farmers and growers over biosecurity at three borders: national, regional and the farm gate.
''He has been involved in the velvetleaf, pea weevil and blackgrass responses, sitting on both the governance group and a number of industry stakeholder groups,'' she said.
''He's also been actively involved in developing a strong and viable GIA framework for the cropping industry.
''Nick has a strong sense of what are the right management decisions to make for the overall industry, but also has a lot of empathy for growers and how decisions will affect them on the ground,'' she said.
Federated Farmers National Biosecurity spokesman Guy Wigley said Mr Pyke was outstanding in each of the responses the arable industry was involved in over the past three years.
The award acknowledged his efforts, he said.
''Nick was able to provide credible scientific information to aid in the response decision-making and ensure the best outcomes for arable farmers were achieved.''
The Arable Farmer of the Year Award, which went to Mr Worsfold, was about recognising excellence in the sector.
It aimed to acknowledge someone who balanced production and profit drivers against environmental, sustainability and other compliance requirements.
Federated Farmers arable vice-chairman Brian Leadley said Mr Worsfold had worked extensively ''not only for the betterment of his own arable farming business but also his peers and future generations of arable farmers''.
Mr Worsfold, who farms 400ha at Greendale in partnership with his son, has been involved with Federated Farmers as North Canterbury arable chairman from 1992 to 1994 and was later on the arable council.
He has been involved with United Wheatgrowers for the past 30 years, first as an electoral college member and then a director.
Mr Worsfold was also part of the first committee which looked at establishing the Foundation for Arable Research (Far), and a member of the Northern South Island Arable Research Group (ARG).
He has also been a member of the arable industry marketing initiative committee since its inception.
Mr Wigley described Mr Worsfold as a quiet, unassuming and effective leader.
''This award is in recognition of his achievements, leadership and contribution to the arable industry, which despite contributing about $750million to the nation's GDP typically flies under the radar in New Zealand.''