Nine months into her role as TSR at Dannevirke’s Farm Source, Zoe Haylock is enjoying learning about the Hawke’s Bay and how to best support her 70 farmers.
TSR Zoe is no stranger to being on farm as she grew up on a dairy farm in Greenpark, Canterbury, where today her parents are still milking 500 cows.
While studying towards her Bachelor of Agricultural Science at Lincoln University, Zoe relief milked, reared calves and did casual work on various farms around Canterbury and beyond.
She then followed her passion for horses and globe-trotted, spending time on farms across Europe and Canada.
When back in New Zealand, Zoe worked as an Environmental Consultant for AgriMagic while her partner was contract milking on a corporate farm.
They were given the opportunity to take on a 50/50 sharemilking job in Norsewood for the 2019-20 season, and it was September 2019 she joined the Fonterra Farm Source team.
Reflecting on the TSR role and what she enjoys about it, Zoe says it’s about helping people.
“I enjoy the challenge and diversity of my role; whether that be helping develop our team in the store, putting together a spray plan for someone’s crop or figuring out what fittings they need to optimise water flow on farm.”
That diversity gives Zoe something new to learn every day, and in an industry that’s ever-evolving, she is passionate about upskilling.
“I like to think I’m trying to help make farming easier for our suppliers every single day.”
This month, farmers will be in the thick of calving and Zoe hopes they have all they need for the ensuing chaos, pointing out that Farm Source is there to deliver the rest.
“Our farmers will be thinking about putting new crops in, following winter crop or crops being fed to the milking herd or lates. There will be a key focus on milk quality, grazing management, ensuring metabolic balance, as well as providing optimal cow and calf nutrition to support milk production, condition and growth to ensure a good season ahead.”
Recently, Zoe was able to be a sounding board for a farmer around his re-grassing ideas, the plan involved a significant investment.
She was able to come back to him with facts and figures as well as expert advice to help compare products and create a plan of attack.
Asked about what makes Hawke’s Bay unique, Zoe says it’s the topography, climate and abundance of fruit and food waste used to supplement the cows.
Among the confectionery mixes she’s seen on farm are onions, citrus peel, carrots, beetroot, apples, squash and kiwifruit.
Not quite a year into her job, Zoe is still getting to know the region and learn about its different micro-climates, soil types and the seasonal changes in each area.
Growing her familiarity of those, however, is her love of exploring the countryside.
She also loves sports and animals, and that comes out in her equine pursuits such as eventing and show jumping. Keeping her busy, she’s involved in the local pony club and eventing committee, but she always makes time for her friends, family and own animals.