Innovation Award entries open

Looking down one of the lanes at the three day Southern Field Days at Waimumu last year. Photo: Southland Express files

IT’S time to get entries in for the revamped Southern Field Days Innovation Awards.

The competition received a makeover earlier this year, with next year’s competition, being held in February, having two rather than three categories – a school category and an open category.

The prizemoney is also better than before with $500 on offer for first prize in the open category and $200 for second.

Innovations co-ordinator Lisa Anderson said the awards attracted entries from throughout New Zealand and from different parts of the agricultural sector.

Previous innovations included portable test buckets for cows, phone apps and a tool for towing a wheelie bin behind a vehicle.

The awards, which are held during the biennial Southern Field Days, provided a great opportunity for people to get exposure for their new products, Mrs Anderson said.

“It gets your name out there and people get to know your product.”

Products entered in the awards did not have to be marketed; it was all about showcasing items that could make a difference in the sector, she said.

“A lot of the time some of the innovations had already been marketed. This is a way of getting your name and the idea out there.”

Entries would be on show outside the Agri Centre at next year’s event, so visitors could see what new products had been developed, she said.

The Southern Rural Life newspaper sponsors the Innovation Awards.

Sales manager Katherine McLennan said they provided a great opportunity to showcase Kiwi ingenuity.

“The agriculture sector is a huge part of the country’s economy and we want to see what new and innovative products are being developed out there by our farmers and agricultural businesses. The awards are about recognising the clever ideas our day-to-day Kiwi blokes and women have in the sector and their work in creating them to make life easier.”

Entries for the awards are now open. Entry forms can be found on the Southern Rural LifeFacebook page.

There are prizes for first and second in both the open and school categories.

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