Jamie McIntyre wins Gisborne Young Grower of the Year regional final

Jamie McIntyre, 25, an orchard hand at Illawarra Farms, has won the 2021 Gisborne Young Grower of the Year competition.

‘What a day and I’m really stoked,’ said Jamie.
‘This is the best job you can have. I love what I do as growing is such a fantastic lifestyle choice. I am passionate about growing and want to share what happens on our orchards, so more people can have a slice of the lifestyle that we can all lead.’

Jamie will represent the Gisborne growing community in the national Young Grower of the Year competition in Wellington on 22-23 September, where six other regional finalists will compete for their share of $30,000 worth of prizes.

Horticulture New Zealand President, Barry O'Neil said all the contestants have a bright future ahead of them, in the $6.5 billion plus and growing New Zealand export and domestic horticulture industry.

‘All contestants can be really proud of what they have achieved today and the industry they are a vibrant part of,’ said Barry.
‘But with the rapid rate of change and number of challenges facing the industry, we need to support and nurture these talented young growers. Competitions like the Young Grower of the Year give young people invaluable experience, to help them start their journey as the leaders of tomorrow. People like Jamie show that the future of the industry is in safe and capable hands.
‘The horticulture industry has a lot to offer. It's a rewarding career for those who want to help feed New Zealand and the world healthy food, while helping our country to meet environmental and climate change mitigation goals.’