Winning attitude for Waikato Dairy Manager of the Year Euan McLeod

Taupiri farmer Euan McLeod is the 2017 Waikato Dairy Manager of the Year.
New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards

Taupiri farmer Euan McLeod is the 2017 Waikato Dairy Manager of the Year.

Hearing his name called out during the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards as the Waikato Dairy Manager of the Year was a shock for Taupiri's Euan McLeod. 

McLeod found it hard to believe he had won, when he received the award at the awards on Friday at Mystery Creek Events Centre.

"Pretty stunned to be honest, because the guy who came second won more merit awards than I had….They said the other fella's name and I was thinking surely I haven't won," he said,

"There couldn't have very much in it at all, the competition was [at a] very high standard."

McLeod is currently farm manager for one of Waikato's most established AB dairy farming operations, Murray and Janet Gibb's 122ha farm, milking 380 cows. 

Former bricklayer Euan McLeod is now Waikato Dairy Manager of the Year finalist

Based on the judges' feedback, McLeod said his attitude towards his work and getting down to basics was a stand out. 

"I suppose they liked my attitude towards everything…because I'm relatively inexperienced in the dairy industry… just keeping everything simple and doing it very well."

After being a bricklayer for 15 years, the Scottish-bred McLeod dabbled in the industry during a working holiday.

Four years ago McLeod, with Kiwi wife Mikky​, moved back to New Zealand and entered the industry properly as a farm assistant in Pirongia.

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So to win was with such a short time on the farm was beyond belief for the couple.

"It hasn't really sunk in yet, we genuinely weren't expecting it… we were thinking we would have a go at this to see what it was like," McLeod said. 

The 35-year old informed friends and family in Scotland that night. 

"Everyone was pretty chuffed for me. It was pretty unexpected [for them] - we hadn't talked much about it."

McLeod will be up for the national title set to be announced on May 6 at Sky City, Auckland. 

Until then, there is a final presentation for the judges. 

"Now I'll just take all the feedback on board, there's just a couple of things myself and Mikky knew we could do better and we will go back to the final presentation.

"I hope we can do the Waikato proud," he said.

Along with the title, McLeod won the DeLaval Livestock Management Awardand Wanna Internet Employee Engagement Award.






 - Stuff

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