Irrigation New Zealand

In association with

A $2,500 cash prize will be awarded for ‘The Best Innovation, Discovery or Achievement that makes a positive contribution, impact or benefit to irrigation in NZ’.

This Award is to celebrate, encourage and promote innovation, and the positive things being undertaken in our communities with and as a result of irrigation. It’s about ordinary people doing extra ordinary things on – farms, schemes, in business or supporting service industries.

Some ideas to get you thinking!

  • Technical Innovation – farm, orchard, vineyard or scheme technical advances in irrigation that add value to the process of ‘doing business’
  • Irrigation Enhancing the Environment – projects and research that will lead to environmental improvements
  • Resilient Communities – projects and research inclusive of people and society, cultural, economic and infrastructure benefits of irrigation

Take a look here at previous winners and finalists to get you thinking


  • The prize can be awarded to an individual or team. Only one entry is permitted per person / team
  • We encourage entries and nominations from irrigators, schemes, user groups, environmental groups, industry, and university students
  • The innovation may be new or a reinvention or reapplication of an old technology
  • The innovation must demonstrate a clear, recent (last 5 years) or potential impact to irrigation in NZ
  • The individual or nominated team representative must be either a NZ citizen or a NZ permanent resident
  • For team entries one person must be nominated as the team representative. This person will be the public face for the innovation
  • The winning entrant will be expected to attend the Conference dinner, receiving the award at the INZ conference dinner and speaking with media
  • The innovation must meet current ethical practice and have been carried out largely in NZ

Selection Criteria

The merit of each entry will be assessed by a judging panel and will be based on…. ‘Innovation in Irrigation’

This is the potential for the new knowledge to have a positive impact on irrigation through technology development or in a manner that will enhance the economic, social, cultural or environmental aspects of irrigation.

For queries phone 03 341 2225 or e-mail

Key Dates:

1st      September                 Entries & Nominations open

12th   October                      Nominations close

31st    October                      Entries close

7th     November                 Entrants notified by email that entry has been received

1-6     November                  Judges meet to id shortlisted candidates

View and determine any question (if any) of entrants

9th      November                Questions sent to entrants as appropriate

14th    November                Deadline for questions answered and returned for judging

16th     November               Judging for shortlist

16th    November                Shortlisted entrants to go to poster stage notified

21st    December                 Poster summary supplied to INZ in PDF format

19th    January                     Panel judging completed

22nd    January                    Notification of top 3 shortlisted candidates

January/February               Editorial coordination of information for top 3 Posters – Mag

17-19th April                        Poster display of shortlisted entries at the INZ conference

18th      April                        Announcement of winner & presentation of award at INZ conference dinner

April                                       Follow up editorial – rural papers

June                                        IrrigationNZ News article on winner


Nomination Form
Download and complete your Nomination-Entry-Form


Entries – Up to 500 words maximum. Photos, pictures, diagrams are also encouraged however, the full entry should comprise of no more than 2 full A4 pages including the 500 word summary.

Short-listed Entries Short-listed entries will be asked to submit a poster for further judging. The poster should successfully communicate the innovation to the wider community.

The top 3 short listed entries will be notified and expected to attend the conference dinner 18th April 2018, Alexandra – Venue to be advised.

The origin of the images used must be acknowledged

  • The work must be your own – any assistance must be acknowledged on the entry
  • The poster is to arrive in PDF format and must be able to be printed as A1 (594mm x 840mm) for display at the conference
  • Posters will be uploaded onto the competition webpage
  • Judges will view the posters as A3

Finalists – The top 3 finalists will be invited to attend the IrrigationNZ conference dinner – in coordination with the event; travel, accommodation and dinner costs will be covered up to the value of $500

 Winner – The winner must receive the award in person on April 18th 2018 at the INZ Conference Dinner, Alexandra – Venue to be advised. The winner will also be invited to present their innovation with a 5 minute presentation at the conference dinner (optional).


How farms are working to reduce environmental impacts in Selwyn 

14th February 2018

It’s been a busy time for many Selwyn farms over the past few months. After a record breaking dry spell in late 2017, we received some welcome rain in January.  In conditions like these, irrigation is really important both for….. Read more

NZ needs more water storage in a changing climate

8th February 2018

The importance of water storage in helping provide a reliable supply of water for urban communities, and for food and energy production in a changing climate needs to be recognised, says IrrigationNZ. “We are seeing the effects of poor future….. Read more

What can we learn from 2017’s wild weather about managing water?

8th February 2018

  As year’s went 2017 was a fairly dramatic one. In February, one of the biggest fires in New Zealand history ignited on the Port Hills amid tinder dry conditions, causing thousands of residents to be evacuated. In March, the….. Read more

Free irrigation workshop for Bay of Plenty farmers

18th January 2018

Bay of Plenty dairy farmers have the opportunity to join a free workshop showing them how to optimise their irrigation use. The workshop will be run by IrrigationNZ and will cover how to assess how well irrigation systems are performing…… Read more

Irrigation Workshops – Marlborough and Tasman

7th December 2017

With challenging dry conditions continuing across the Upper South Island, Marlborough and Tasman irrigators will have the opportunity to find out how to be more efficient in their water use at upcoming workshops hosted by IrrigationNZ. “Understanding how to monitor….. Read more


Irrigation Efficiency Summer Programme

November 7, 2017 - February 28, 2018

                                 Is your irrigation equipment operating as it should? What improvements could be made? These are questions that can be technically challenging and costly. To help irrigating farmers navigate to Good Management….. Read more

Foundations of working with tangata whenua workshop

March 6 - March 7

Given the considerable interest shown, INZ have organised a workshop on how to be effective working and negotiating with tangata whenua. Proudly supported by our training partners The learning objectives of this are to: Have a basic idea of who….. Read more

Irrigation Accreditation

Smart Irrigation