August 20, 2020

From city to farm…and loving it

Being part of the team at Tauranga Vets has been instrumental in the success and growth of her family farm in Ohauiti, says employee Janelle Nee.

Business Manager here at Tauranga Vets Janelle and partner Mel McEntyre scooped two Fonterra Farming Milk Quality Awards earlier this year. As well as the recent accolades, they have also been able to pull the farm out of a deficit.

Janelle has worked at Tauranga Vets since early 2018 and says the great support and advice from Managing Director David McDonnell and the Large Animal Team of Dr Phil Rennie and Marcus Allan has made a huge impact on the way they run their farm.

“The expertise and support has meant we’ve confidently made better decisions about our Dairy Herds’ health which overall has contributed to greater results,” says Janelle.

These results have landed the farm the award for milk with a low bacteria count as well as an award for grade free milk.

This meant they came out with the top 10% in the Bay of Plenty and the top 4%  in New Zealand.

From city to farm

Although originally from Tauranga, Janelle spent many years in Auckland’s corporate world. Mel also had a rural upbringing however was also working a similar corporate lifestyle to Janelle.

In 2016 they took a leap of faith and without knowing much about dairy farming took over Janelle’s family farm. Both have never looked back.

Janelle and Mel were interviewed by the Bay of Plenty Times , telling the publication they prioritised being environmentally sustainable, with a farm environment plan to manage carbon emissions and protect waterways.

“We make a real effort to show people that there are farmers out there that care about their animals and the environment,” Janelle told the publication. “You don’t have to pillage the land and get every last drop of profit out of it.”

Mel says she never liked corporate work and farm duties are more rewarding. “I didn’t realise how stressed I was in Auckland until I moved down here and everything eased off. It all felt cluttered there.”

“It shows how if you’re doing what you love, it can make all the difference,” adds Janelle.

Read the full article on the Bay of Plenty Times here