We asked farmers accross New Zealand what they were looking for in a maize seed provider. 

This is Tawera Nikau's Story


Tell us a bit about your family history, and your journey to getting to where you are now.

After I retired from playing rugby league for many many years, I returned home to the farm here at Matahuru. My dad was still alive at the time; my dad has this vision of what he wanted for our farm, and I think it’s up to us to make sure that that vision gets fulfilled; so, part of that was to put our land back into maize and maize silage and grain, so we could get a return so that we can invest in other parts of the farm.

How does your relationship with Corson Maize and your field rep benefit your operation?

I think the great thing about Corson and what they bring to the table is that they’ve got a wealth of knowledge; they’ve got experts that have been in the field; I think Graeme’s been there 25 years plus; and then Mike’s experience; being able to sit down with us … what we should be doing in terms of fertiliser, understanding what type of seed we should be planting in certain areas; because we’ve got some lower-lying land; we’ve got some hillier crops so we want those to be coming off at certain times to maximise the yield… so the partnership together has been absolutely fantastic.

You know I can’t speak highly enough of the relationship; when we first started walking about the project and what we wanted to do here, they were only too happy to come out here at sit with the trustees, go through all the details, explain what that actually meant; so, running our trustees through that was really, really valuable – you know those values that we have of trust, integrity, honesty… those are the values we all grew up with. But knowing that we’ve got their support and trust really reassures the trust that we’re on the right path.

What stands out to you about the service that Corson Maize provide?

So being able to work with Corson has opened our eyes to saying how can we make sure that the land is going to be looked in future; so, getting their advice around some of the regenerative agricultural practices around planting when the crops come off; all we can plant into there – the likes of oats and mustard seeds to help the soil regenerate and grow a lot more.

The role we’ve been entrusted with is the role of kaitiakitanga. So, you talk about kaitiakitanga it’s all about being a guardian; making sure that you leave the land in a better place. You know, looking after the land so it can provide and sustain not only ourselves but our future generations.

What would you like to say to other farmers about working with Corson Maize?

What I would say about Corson Maize is give them a try; you know business is all about building relationships and they’ve got some good people in the organisation. You know as a farmer that’s been new to the game – we didn’t know anything about maize – having Mike and Graeme come along and share their knowledge and expertise has been absolutely fantastic.

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