King Country farmer Anna Nelson has today been announced as a new Board-appointed Farmer Director to the Silver Fern Farms Co-operative.
Nelson runs a 1450ha breeding and finishing block in Aria with husband Blair (Munta), and in-laws Jon and Kaye Nelson, she has three teenage children.
“The broader outlook for the red meat sector is positive, but we’re facing into some really difficult challenges at the moment,” commented Nelson.
“Land use change, workforce shortages, and logistics challenges all threaten to distract us away from our core focus of delivering high-quality produce into market. Silver Fern Farms is playing a role to support farmers in both navigating this change and continuing to meet changing consumer demand. Together, we need to do more to meet these discerning consumers’ expectations.”
Originally from Cheviot, Nelson has a veterinary degree from Massey University. As well as 10 years at a vet practice in central Waikato, she has also been an Associate Director at Beef + Lamb and is currently a catchment coordinator at King Country River Care.
“The Co-operative aligns with our family’s values of caring for our land, our people, and our community. I want to make sure that future generations have similar opportunities to work and live rurally just as I have been lucky enough to do,” she said.
Silver Fern Farms Co-operative Chairman Rob Hewett said Nelson’s appointment reflects the Board’s ongoing focus to invest in governance capability.
“Good governance is critical in ensuring the business successfully navigates the challenges ahead, and continues providing returns for shareholders. To support the next generation of governors, the Board has been focused on providing opportunities for shareholder suppliers to undertake professional development.
“Anna is an alumni of our ‘To the Core’ Leadership and Governance Development Programme we run in partnership with Farmlands, and with funding support from Agmardt. This programme gives our shareholders an opportunity to learn more about governance in their Co-operative, as well as develop the skills needed to operate at board level.
“Through the appointment process involving seven other applicants, Anna proved herself to be a capable and committed individual. She’ll make an excellent Director for the organisation,” he concluded.