Story so far

Early focus

An early focus was understanding the natural resources and associated constraints of the farm.


We collected information to better understand the soil, we have identified the risks and opportunities associated with the underlying natural resources through a Farm Environment Plan (FEP); and we have used Farmax to model different stocking and farm management scenarios.

Comprehensive Business Plan

A comprehensive farm business plan was built using this information, aiming to optimise profits within environmental best practice and working within the natural limitations of the land.

The timeline of all the activities undertaken by Future Farms to identify, secure and get our first future farm operational

April 2021

Low Methane Rams are joined to 2ths

Low methane rams are joined, with the normal farm rams, to the 2ths to allow comparison of their offspring.

April 2021

Rapid Genetic Gain project gets underway

The farm team collect semen from a ram on farm, spin it and inseminate a line of ewes. 

March 2021

Our current five focus areas

Read more about our current five focus areas on Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s Future Farm here that reflect the challenges and opportunities facing today’s sheep and beef farmers

March 2021

Oats and legumes – the ideal post winter grazing crop

Establishing a mix of oats and legumes into grazed winter feed paddocks is benefiting both the environment and livestock on B+LNZ’s Future Farm Lanercost. Read more about it here

January 2021

Building people capability on Lanercost

Developing skills in the individuals working on the 1310ha North Canterbury hill country farm is part of the Future Farm’s management plan. Read more about Digby Heard here

October 2020

B+LNZ assumes ownership of Future Farm lease

Beef + Lamb New Zealand is taking the opportunity to assume total ownership of the lease of its first Future Farm, Lanercost. Read the press release here

August 2019

Lease Learnings

B+LNZ have documented key lessons learnt during the lease negotiation process to provide insights for farmers considering entering a lease agreement.  

July 2019

Establishing visibility of activity

B+LNZ employed a Future Farm Insights Manager with communication of farm performance being one of the priorities.  The team are working hard to improve the website functionality, intergrate FarmIQ and setup performance monitoring to plan.  

September 2018

Sheep genetics plan

AbacusBio developed a proposed genetic plan to identify breeders to approach for ram selection. The key objective of this was to firstly identify the key performance traits being targeted by the farm, then search using publicly available tools (B+LNZ SIL on line ram search tools), and then identify the ram breeders who had available stock for sale, in the quantity needed and at the appropriate performance level.

August 2018

Fertiliser recommendations made

AgKnowledge assessed the current nutrient status, soil fertility and provided advice on the fertiliser requirements for the next 12 months.

July 2018

Mapping of Lanercost

AgriMagic completed an environmental mapping exercise of the property.

May 2018

Farm safety management system implemented

A Farm Safety Management System (FSMS) was developed in collaboration with B+LNZ specialist, Exigent Risk Management and the North Canterbury Future Farm Team. In developing and implementing the system, the following process was followed:

  • Review of existing Future Farm safety documentation to identify what was currently in place and its level of compliance with the Health and Safety at Work Act (2015).
  • The team visited the property to meet key staff members and better understand the property, including key safety risks specific to it. This included aspects such as stock policy, infrastructure, terrain, chemical use and staffing. Key to this visit was active engagement with the staff to ensure that any changes to the existing system were going to be appropriate and effective.
  • A revised safety management system was developed for the property based on the B+LNZ Farm Safety Management System. Attention was paid to Hazard substances compliance, with some key changes made to ensure that the hazardous substances were being handled safely. These changes were checked with Worksafe to ensure technical accuracy. The revised documentation, along with explanatory notes, was then provided to North Canterbury Future Staff for implementation.
  • Support was provided to Future Farm management and staff in implementing the system, and being on call if required
  • B+LNZ then conducted a follow up visit to Future Farm to ensure that the new system had been correctly implemented and was being followed.
  • B+LNZ and North Canterbury Future Farm touch base regularly through the year to make sure the Farm Safety Management System is fit for purpose and practical to meet the farm’s requirements.
April 2018

Environmental checks completed

B+LNZ’s Environment team completed an environmental audit on the property.

April 2018

Due diligence undertaken

B+LNZ Limited asked a local farm consulting business to complete a due diligence on the desired property. This report includes financial reporting, to allow a farm systems model to be developed.

January 2018

Farmers participated in FutureFarm selection

A workshop was held in Wellington, where the final two properties were presented to a Steering Group. Steering Group participants included farmers from Manawatu, Gisborne, Otago, Mid-Canterbury, Marlborough, Southland, along with farm consultants, a farm accountant, and a vet. Please note identifying commentary about the second property has been removed from this report.

January 2018

Independent evaluation by AbacusBio carried out

After reviewing all expression of interests, the final two properties were analysed in this report by AbacusBio. Please note identifying commentary about the second property have been removed from this report.

October 2017

Expressions of interest registered

B+LNZ sent out a media release, and expressions of interest were received.