Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has launched a new programme to try to lift the productivity and profitability of sheep and beef farmers in the Manawatu-Whanganui region.
The Sheep and Beef Land Productivity Programme is a result of the Manawatu-Whanganui Growth Study, which identified the growth of the sheep and beef sector as a key opportunity for the region.
The Manawatu-Whanganui region has the largest number of sheep and beef cattle of any region in New Zealand, and Nathan Guy said improving the performance of these farms would provide a real economic boost.
Research shows the top 20 percent of red meat farmers achieve returns approximately four times higher than those of the average red meat farmer, irrespective of land class and location.
Mr Guy said this showed the potential on offer.
He said a regional working group had begun developing a draft programme structure, looking at how to support farmers to reach their goals and remove any barriers that were in the way.
Mr Guy said it was about informing and inspiring farmers through practical initiatives that made sense and worked on the ground.