Freelance journalist Kate Evans, writing for New Zealand Geographic and US magazine Roads and Kingdoms, took out this year’s top prize in the New Zealand Guild of Agricultural Journalists and Communicators’ annual journalism awards.
At the November 10 dinner and awards ceremony in Wellington, Kate was named the recipient of the Ministry for Primary Industries Rongo Award for the second year in a row.
Praised by judges for her “first-class writing”, Evans’ winning articles focused on two very different innovations – one on how the Precision Seafood Harvester, a large-scale and expensive government-funded project changed trawl fishing, and another exploring the claims that BioLumic, a New Zealand agricultural science company that had been shortlisted for a major global award, the Food Planet Prize, can use short doses of UV light to significantly boost the health and yield of seeds and plants.
Runner-up in the Rongo award was an entry from Kristine Walsh for two stories on Cyclone Gabrielle, showcasing the effort journalists take to reveal how weather events in the Gisborne region impacted the horticultural industry, while at the same time telling the human stories behind the events.
The Federated Farmers Broadcast Journalism Award was won by the REX podcast team Rebecca Greaves and Hamish McKay for their on the ground coverage immediately after Cyclone Gabrielle hit in February.
The Pāmu Agricultural Journalism Encouragement Award, established to recognise the work of journalists who are new to specialising in agricultural journalism, went to RNZ’s Sally Murphy for her coverage of Fieldays for RNZ’s Midday Report, Cyclone Gabrielle for Morning Report, and the eradication efforts of m-bovis for None to Noon.
The 2023 awards were announced at an event in Wellington. A total of 13 awards were presented; 11 for journalism, one for communications, and one for photography. Judges for each category came from a range of professional backgrounds, from established journalists to industry leaders.
The Primary Sector Communications Campaign Award, sponsored by the New Zealand Guild of Agricultural Journalists and Communicators, was awarded to the New Zealand Forest Owners Association with Te Uru Rākau New Zealand Forest Service for their Wood our low carbon future campaign – initiated to raise awareness among the public at large about the broader supply chain of the wood industry in Aotearoa New Zealand.
President of the New Zealand Guild of Agricultural Journalists and Communicators, Hayley Gavin, said, “The standard of entries and the breadth of topics covered this year show the significance of agricultural journalism and photography in Aotearoa New Zealand, and how important it is that we support and celebrate the people who bring these issues and stories to public attention.”
|The full list of award winners are: The Ministry for Primary Industries Rongo Award was won by Kate Evans for two stories about scientific and technological innovations in agriculture and fisheries https://www.nzgeo.com/stories/a-clean-sweep/ https://roadsandkingdoms.com/2022/the-light-fantastic/ The Ministry for Primary Industries Rongo Award runner-up Kristine Walsh for two articles that appeared in the NZ Orchardist magazine on the impact of Cyclone Gabrielle on the horticultural industry https://issuu.com/hortnz/docs/nz_grower_march_2023_pages https://issuu.com/hortnz/docs/the_orchardist_april_2023_pages|
Ko Tātou This Is Us Biosecurity Journalism Award was won by Kate Evans for articles that appeared in the New Zealand Geographic on the Caulerpa problem on Aotea/Great Barrier
AgResearch Science Writers Award was won by Elaine Fisher for articles that appeared in The Dairy Exporter on research into the uses of ulva australis and what eDNA reveal about what lives in and around the Manawatu River Sea Lettuce shows promise What lives in the river
Federated Farmers Broadcast Journalism Award was won by the REX podcast team Rebecca Greaves and Hamish McKay for their coverage immediately after Cyclone Gabrielle hit. REX Cyclone Gabrielle Aftermath – Saturday 18th February – REX | Podcast on Spotify REX Cyclone Gabrielle Aftermath – Sunday February 19th – REX | Podcast on Spotify
Beef + Lamb Hard News Award was won by freelance journalist Jo Grigg, for two articles which appeared in Country Wide on the proposed agricultural greenhouse gas pricing scheme and farm forecasts – income and costs. HWEN Proposal not cautious enough Meat prices pothole
Zespri Export Journalism Award, was won by Nigel Stirling, for two items that two pieces that appeared in Farmers Weekly. One, a classic piece of export business reporting, and the other focusing on the India trade situation.
TUANZ Rural Communities Award, was won by Sally Round for Voices from Tai Rāwhiti, an episode for RNZ’s Country Life that captured how rural people were faring three months after Cyclone Gabrielle ravaged the region.
Alliance Group Ltd Red Meat Industry Journalism Award, was won by Gerald Piddock, for a pair of articles that appeared in Farmers Weekly focussing on bobby calves and the implications for both the dairy and beef sectors. https://www.farmersweekly.co.nz/news/pickup-delays-a-sign-of-bobby-pressures-to-come/ https://www.farmersweekly.co.nz/politics/beef-dairy-must-unite-to-tackle-calf-crisis/ Wools of New Zealand Rural Photography Award was won by Louise Savage for an image of Rayna Grace (Hyde Searing) deftly throwing a fleece through the air into the press at Puketira Station, Ormond, Gisborne. The image, published in Country Wide magazine, captures the fast pace of the work and perpetual motion of the members of the shearing gang.
DairyNZ Dairy Industry Award was won by Tony Benny, for two profiles which appeared in Dairy Farmer, featuring Westland Milk Products’ CEO Richard Wyeth and Canterbury farmer Phil Garrett
OverseerFM Digital Storytelling Award was won by Carol Stiles for two episodes of MPI’s Primary Matters podcast – the Wonders of Wool and ‘You Do What?’ https://shows.acast.com/primary-matters/episodes/primary-matters-the-wonders-of-wool https://shows.acast.com/primary-matters/episodes/you-do-what-wallabies Pāmu Agricultural Journalism Encouragement Award was won by Sally Murphy for her coverage of Fieldays for RNZ’s Midday Report, Cyclone Gabrielle for Morning Report, and the eradication efforts of m-bovis for Nine to Noon.
NZGAJC Primary Sector Communications Campaign Award was won by the New Zealand Forest Owners Association with Te Uru Rākau New Zealand Forest Service for the Wood our low carbon future campaign