Proceedings

PR – Dairy Farm Ownership And Management Structures: Focus Group Research

The traditional route for individuals in the New Zealand dairy industry is from farm worker to sharemilker to owner-operator. In recent years new routes have emerged. The purpose of this research is to gain a clearer understanding of the variety of ownership structures that now exist and how they are managed, their potential impact on the industry and what each has to offer present and future players in the industry. Four focus group meetings were held. The farmer participants included owner-operators, equity partners, sharemilkers and managers. Various rural professionals also attended. These meetings aimed to capture the participants’ interpretation on the advantages and disadvantages of various structures, and the issues driving change. Participants’ views on the ownership and management structures were influenced by the structures prevalent in each region, especially in the South Island where equity partnerships are prevalent.

Keywords: dairy farming, farm ownership, management structures, equity partnerships, sharemilking, focus groups.

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Author(s): Dooley, E., Gardner, J.W., Payne, T., Shadbolt, N., Smeaton, D.

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Organizations(s): AgResearch Ltd, Ruakura Research Centre, Hamilton, Massey University, Palmerston North