Since being awarded Dairy Manager of the Year for the Bay of Plenty at the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards in 2023, Chihiro Hanyuda has spent the last 12 months continuing to do the thing she loves.
She is still a dairy manager for this season on a Waikato farm and will be moving to another farm next season. “Since this is my second year on this farm as the manager, I knew what was going on. Last season was all about me getting my head around the whole system.”
“This farm has been really good for me to learn. The owners are supportive and they let me make my own mistakes and learn from them.”
Chihiro says the biggest lessons she has learnt over the last 12 months have been about stock handling and grazing. “The weather has been quite different this year compared to last season, it was just wet all of last season. This year is a little bit drier.”
The change in weather in comparison to last season has meant that she has learnt the difference in grazing by the weather.
“My favourite part of the job is just being outside and getting some fresh air.”
Chihiro says her biggest strength has been her willingness to learn and get to know her co-workers. She says her weakness has been efficiency.
When asked if she would be entering the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards for 2024, she says “I can’t, I’m on the committee. So I’ve been organising this year’s entrance for the manager’s category.”
For others considering getting into the industry, she says, “You’ve got nothing to lose, just go for it, and enjoy the whole experience because at the end of the day, it’s just learning and opportunities and getting to know other people that you would never have met otherwise.”