Strict hygiene standards on dairy farms will be an important part of long-term export market protection, say award-winning Waikato farmers Adrian and Pauline Ball.
Shareholders last year approved the move from three wards to two – one in the North Island and one in the South, with the aim to move to nationally-elected directors over time.
The North Island ward is seeing the retirement of Oliver Saxton after 15 years and the retirement by rotation of Sarah Von Dadelszen. The South Island ward has a bye this year.
Nominations for the vacancies closed on August 16 and eligible shareholders in the North Island have until 5pm on Wednesday, September 21 to vote.
Voting papers have been mailed to eligible shareholders. Provision has been made for both postal and online voting.
Sarah Von Dadelszen is seeking re-election. The remaining seven candidates are Dirk Sieling of Whitianga, Donna Smit of Whakatane, Grant Coombes of Taupiri, Ken Hames of Paparoa, Murray Jagger of Whangarei, Paul Martin of Whangarei and Stu Chapman of Dargaville. Candidate profiles can be accessed at http://www.electionz.com/ballance2016nw/profiles.pdf
Ballance chairman, David Peacocke, says he is pleased to see eight candidates standing for the new North Island Ward.
"It's important for our co-operative to have strong governance and that our shareholders have the opportunity to choose from a deep pool of candidates to select the best directors with the best skills and experiences. We are confident this strong selection will encourage a good voter turnout."