Two female finalists win top three awards in Young Horticulturist of the Year competition

Release: Friday November 15, 2013

Wanganui garden centre assistant Kelly Jean Kerr wins 2013 Young Horticulturist of the Year and second place getter Wellington collections specialist Eliza Whalley also wins the AGMARDT Market Innovation Project.

After two gruelling days of competition, the winner of the Young Horticulturist of the Year was announced at a gala awards ceremony in Auckland on Thursday November 14. Representing Nursery and Garden Association, Kelly Jean Kerr is the 2013 Young Horticulturist of the Year, taking home $7,500 of travel to view horticulture internationally as well as other prizes gifted by sponsors.

Kelly returned to the stage again to receive the Turners & Growers Best Practical Activities Award of $3,500 scholarship. Kelly spoke about the importance of ‘green life’ and she encouraged all sectors to work together to bring about plant life balance through more green spaces, plants, and flowers which in turn will help grow and support a national target of a horticultural industry worth $10 billion by 2020.

Turner’s & Grower’s CEO Alastair Hulbert said: “the people who come through the Young Horticulturist of the Year are the foundation of the industry. This competition showcases horticulture as a genuine career, rather than just a job, it’s a career for a lifetime.”

Second place getter Eliza Whalley won the $5,500 Massey University study scholarship, $2,000 Primary ITO professional development scholarship, and other prizes gifted by sponsors.

This is the first time in the nine years of the competition that women have taken first and second place in the Young Horticulturist of the Year, as well as first prize in the AGMARDT Market Innovation Project.

Innovative backpack sprayer design wins judge’s vote

Eliza was called back to the stage three times; her innovative design of a backpack sprayer specifically for women won the AGMARDT Market Innovation Project. Judges commented that Eliza’s design was well researched, an excellent example of using networks, and that the concept deserves to be highly successful.

Representing NZ Wine growers, Matthew Fox took second place in the AGMARDT Market Innovation project, with his plan to utilise wine industry waste for compost.  Malcolm Nitschke, GM AGMARDT said that they see huge commercial success for Matthew’s innovation. He added, “the future of the horticulture industry will be influenced by the young emerging talent in this competition and the AGMARDT Market Innovation Project is an initiative that recognises and supports the development of this talent.”

Kelly Jean continued her evening’s success taking third place in the AGMARDT Market Innovation Project with her ‘Go gardening’ app for novice gardeners. 

Eliza Whalley was also awarded Bayer’s Best Practice Award and Fruitfed Supplies Leadership Award.
Max Spence, National Manager of Fruitfed Supplies noted that “as these young leaders move around this industry they share their knowledge, and their skill sets further advance what can be delivered in horticulture production.”

The Young Horticulturist of the Year competition is made possible through the generous support of:  

  • AGMARDT
  • Fruitfed Supplies
  • Turners and Growers
  • Bayer
  • Massey University
  • Primary ITO
  • NZ Gardener
  • On Gas
  • NZ Winegrowers

 

Full Results for 2013 Young Horticulturist of
the Year competition

1st Prize:
Kelly Jean Kerr representing Nursery and Garden Industry New Zealand

  • $7,500 Travel and accommodation package
  • $1,000 Everris Specialty Products
  • $550 Yates Gift Voucher
  • $100 NZ Horticultural magazine subscription for one year

2nd Prize:
Eliza Whalley representing NZ Recreation Association Amenity Horticulture

  • $5,500 Massey University study scholarship
  • $2,000 Primary ITO Professional Development scholarship
  • $750 Everris Specialty Products
  • $250 Yates Gift Voucher
  • $100 NZ Horticultural magazine subscription for one year

3rd Prize: Benjimen James representing Horticulture NZ’s combined vegetable and fruit sectors

  • $1,000 Cash
  • $500 Everris Specialty Products
  • $150 Yates Gift Voucher
  • $100 NZ Horticultural magazine subscription for one year

The AGMARDT Market Innovation Project Prizes

  • 1st Prize: $5,000 – Eliza Whalley
  • 2nd Prize: $2,500 – Matthew Fox representing NZ Winegrowers
  • 3rd Prize: $1,500 – Kelly Jean Kerr
  • Consolation prizes of $500 for each completed project: Jessica Mills representing Floristry NZ, Blair Chicken representing Landscaping NZ, Benjimen James representing Horticulture NZ’s combined vegetable and fruit sectors

The Turners & Growers Best Practical Activities Award: Kelly Jean Kerr

  • The finalist who receives the best overall score for practical activities in the Grand Final receives a $3,500 travel scholarship.

The Fruitfed Supplies Leadership Award: Eliza Whalley

  • The finalist who demonstrates outstanding promise and leadership during the competition receives a $2,500 scholarship towards a Leadership or Outward Bound course.

The Bayer Best Practice Award – Eliza Whalley

  • The finalist who receives the highest score in a range of activities with a focus on crop management practices and sustainability during the Grand Final receives a $2,500 scholarship.

The Best Speech – Benjimen James

  • The finalist who achieves the highest score for their speech receives $500 cash.

 

Sponsors

The Education Trust would like to take the opportunity to sincerely thank the following companies supporting the 2013 Young Horticulturist of the Year competition event.  It is with their support and commitment that we are able to run the competition each year. Thank you.  The Young Horticulturist of the Year is managed by the RNZIH Education Trust.
Partnering Sponsors; AGMARDT, Fruitfed Supplies, Turners & Growers
Supporting Sponsors: Bayer CropScience, Massey University, Primary ITO, NZ Gardener magazine, NZ Winegrowers, OnGas
Affiliated Sponsors: ANZ, City Parks Services, Everris, Faber Greenhouses, Manukau Institute of Technology- School of Horticulture, Norwood Industries Pty Ltd, NZ Gourmet, Safeworx, Yara Fertilisers, Yates
Friends to the competition: Auckland Botanic Gardens, Cornwall Park Trust Board, Rainbow Park Nurseries, Royal NZ Institute of Horticulture.

 

For more information please contact Elenka Nikoloff, RNZIH Trust:
Elenka.nikoloff@xtra.co.nz
Mobile  0276 332858.
Visit www.younghort.co.nz

 

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Shanna Hickling
Young Horticulturist of the Year 2017

 

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