NZ Dairy Autumn 2022

60 | nzdairy DAIRY PEOPLE » Charlie & Emma Adair Resilient business thrives when Richard Loader It’s been a challenging year for 2020 Northland Dairy Industry Awards Share Farmer of the Year winners Charlie and Emma Adair who have proved that when the unexpected happens their farming business can continue to thrive. When Charlie was diagnosed with cancer and had to undergo chemotherapy in Auckland, where he got locked down, their staff, led by Emma, carried on with their substantial farming operation as Charlie recovered. “Being from the UK we’ve always aimed to create a sustainable farming business that can run itself because we want the flexibility to go and visit family. This past year has proved we’ve got a resilient business,” says Charlie who is thankful to be well on the road to recovery. The couple, who farm in Ruatangata near Whangarei, have big plans: $40m in equity by the age of 45. They are already well on their way to achieving their goal in the next 20 years as they are in their third season on a 211ha farm they now own in Knights Road milking 450 cows with the aim of 600 cows next season. Over the past few years they have made significant investment in the property building a new feed pad, installing 9km of water pipes, re-fencing and re-grassing the entire farm. They plan to eventually replace the 25-aside herringbone shed with a 50 aside. The Adairs split calve and the feed pad allows them to feed cows all year driving production. Through re-grassing production of dry matter has risen from seven tonnes per hectare to over 12 tonnes. The farm is on target to produce 160,000 kgs/MS this season with a target of 220,000 kgs/ MS next season. They lease a second farm at Rapid Road, which borders the other farm but is accessed ten minutes drive away due to a river and road, totalling 167ha milking 500 cows through a 36 aside herringbone shed. The farm produced 233,000 kgs/MS last seaNorthland DIA Share Farmer of the Year winners Charlie and Emma Adair. son and is on target for only slightly less production this year due to reducing cow numbers so Charlie could have the time to fully regain his health. The couple credits their great staff with helping through the tough year. They employ a team of eight in total across both farms plus casual labour as required. Both Charlie and Emma work actively on the farm with Emma taking on the administration aspects of the business, calf rearing as well as being the primary care giver to their children William, 3 and Oliver, 1. The Adairs’ business also includes a calf-rearing unit on a 60ha lease block where they buy in 2000 calves each year and rear them to 100kgs. They are on the lookout for a finishing property to allow them to rear the bulls to 300kgs or heavier as the next logical step in the growth of their business. They do most of their own contracting work including cropping, fertiliser and digger work. They also do a small amount of contracting digger work off farm for clients. One overall goal for the farms is to breed better stock. The aim is for a Friesian cross cow that can produce 90% of liveweight on a seasonal supply or 135% of liveweight on a 500 day lactation. The Adairs would like their herds to sit in the top 10% for production worth. It was in 2015 the couple moved to New Zealand. Charlie, who holds a Diploma in Agriculture (UK), had been managing a 300-cow dairy farm in the UK and they moved countries because they saw better opportunities to progress in the dairy industry in New Zealand. Charlie initially worked as a 2IC in Rotorua, while Emma relief milked. They then contracted milked on a 275ha Whangarei farm. No matter what they do profit is always the focus: “We question why we invest money in what we do and always aim to get the best return – what makes us dollars and cents. It’s about aligning our goals – equity, profit and family. Equity growth is always our goal and to run a sustainable large scale farming business.” Proud supporters of Charlie and Emma Adair Specialising in Pasture/Crop Agronomy and Agricultural Chemical in Northland. Locally Owned and Operated 09 438 0884 | | Office 09 433 1733 Eden 021 0842 6587 Warren 027 391 4777 HAY · SILAGE • SPRAYING • FENCING CULTIVATION • SEEDING • FEED SALES For the Betterment of New Zealand The Regions is the NZ Dairy sector's largest & only nationwide Immigration & Recruitment Service provider. Our Key Account Managers cover each farming region of the country and our Pastoral Care Team ensures the candidates feel supported on their arrival to the farm, all wrapped up with the best Immigration and Recruitment support. A winning formula illustrated by our size and longevity. We focus on attracting and retaining talent on our client’s farms across rural NZ, lobbying government for the human capacity needs of our sector, and making a real di…erence in the lives of our clients. The Regions are Market Leaders for a reason. We walk the talk. We understand how sta ng shortages cripple an operation, testing farm owners and their managers. We are in this with you for the long haul, side by side, providing solutions that enable you to achieve your goals. Our passion is to provide solutions to keep your farm operating smoothly, to allow you to focus on your farm and your goals. Hamilton Head O ce: 5c Clifton Road, Hamilton 3204 Ashburton O ce: 47 Alford Forest Rd, Ashburton 7700 Oamaru O ce: Shop 1, 203 Thames Street, Oamaru 9400 Phone: 0800 100 274 Email: Website: