Awards 2023

Awards 2023

The industry awards celebrated their fifth year in style at the Devon Hotel and Conference Centre in New Plymouth on the 4th of July

They would not be possible without the support of the dedicated award sponsors. A massive thank you to Ravensdown, Ballance, Graymont and Keith Andrews for your continued support in celebrating the shining stars in our industry.

Ballance Agri-Nutrients President’s Award Winner:
Stephen Whitehead (HWR)

Steve is very industry, company and customer driven and is always up for a challenge when others think things are too hard. He is also very H&S orientated and doesn’t take short cuts. He has a can-do attitude and is always positive and never shies away from a challenge.

Steve has played a major role in the spreading industry at all different levels, from managing a spreading company, managing a branch depot and consignment stores, dispatching drivers. His most rewarding role was managing and developing a team of dispatchers.

Steve is a great leader and always trying to better and mentor people and to help them reach their goals. He’s had many different roles within our branch and is also VP for national. He listens to people and tries to add to their thinking and expand their perspective.

He has a very positive influence on others and helps them strive to reach their full potential. Steve is passionate about imparting his knowledge and being part of something meaningful. He believes that working together can create better outcomes for the industry.

Being recently appointed as a Driver Trainer by HWR is a massive ambition being realised for Steve. He thrives on learning and growing as a person and is excited to be sharing this passion with others and developing the drivers in our industry.

Steve has played a major role in the industry at both branch and national levels and is always trying to help better the industry with the things he does and works on. Since entering the industry in 1999, Steve has held many leadership roles.

Steve has been instrumental in helping to re-establish a groundspread qualification. The groundspread industry falls under two Workforce Development Councils and he has attended every session in this process (and there have been many). His knowledge helps to ensure that each micro-credential reviewed/created will benefit the future workforce and their employers.

He will analyse all information, no matter the situation, listen to everyone’s ideas and then always offer a clear, succinct statement that always adds value to the conversation. When Steve speaks, it will be well-considered and worthy of stopping to listen, every time!

Steve believes that everyone has value to add and is passionate about harnessing people’s passion and developing it. Despite his many years in the industry, he remains a sponge, soaking in all ideas and knowledge, and he believes in creating the right environment for people to feed off and develop each other through the sharing of ideas.

Steve is driven to change the industry for the better and is always seeking solutions and member’s voices on any challenges. He will often instigate surveys within his own branch after a council meeting discussion to get a better picture of any emerging issues and will freely share this information with others in the hopes that when people see better, they will be better too.

Steve is well-considered, engaged, and contributes immensely at all levels of the Association.

Congratulations to winner Steve and this year’s runner-up Gary Carr who was notably nominated for this award by a 3rd generational client.

Proudly Sponsored by Ballance

Ballance is a New Zealand farmer-owned co-operative that helps its customers to farm more productively, profitably and sustainably. From its core business of fertiliser manufacturing, supply, sales, and advice, Ballance has grown to offer farmers a full range of science-backed nutrient products and services. This enables us to help farmers achieve soil and animal nutrition and productivity with a minimal environmental footprint. Ballance’s agri-nutrient advice is complemented by award-winning web-based farm systems software. With strong emphasis on quality and professionalism, Ballance is proud to be the sponsor of the prestigious President’s Award.

Graymont Health & Safety Award Winner:
Grant Anderson (HWR)

Grant is a strong communicator and speaks to the individual in a down to earth manner. His passion for the industry is infectious. Grant has a natural ability to see something wrong and rather than complain decides how to fix it. Grant is giving and generous with his time.

Grant is naturally positive – it’s hard to be negative around Grant. He freely gives his time to teach, lifts people up and ensures everyone has a voice. Grant is passionate about safety and has developed a driver training course that benefits the whole industry.

Grant is a natural leader; he draws the best out of the people around him. He listens and lets everyone have a voice. Grant described his personal driver as being able to improve the industry. The values Grant brings to the industry make him a natural leader and mentor.

Grant lifts everyone up and lets them have a voice. Great attribute – so important to allow people to speak and learn. Learnt a lot from Bill Richardson – he knew all about his team and that resonated with Grant. Being positive helps people communicate.

He is passionate about improving the training module to ensure that it is kept up to date and relevant to the industry and improves the safety of the wider family. Look at an online offer as an intro to the industry.

Grant’s willingness to share his knowledge and time is admirable, he can identify an issue and will stand up and sort it out. Grant has significantly contributed to the health and safety of the industry.

Mental health over all industries is topical and Grant acknowledged this. TSL started to take note of the body language of their team and implemented a healthy eating option for their drivers. All drivers have access to healthy meal options within their workspace. They encouraged camaraderie by setting up a scorecard system – a friendly competition between peers to move and eat well. They have also engaged with an agency to provide support to employees through periods of stress / mental health or depression.

Grant is the President of the local rugby club and unconsciously gives back to the community – in his words “it’s not about me, it’s about getting people to and from work safely. All drivers are part of the family and his own family time is often reduced for this reason. In 2018 Grant was aware of 2 vehicle incidents and decided to build the training module – in 2019 they went from 9 to zero incidents in a 12-month period. This is a massive change in behaviour. Grant also commented that with the rise of social media there is no hiding of mistakes. The key was not to talk at the audience but to engage them to encourage sharing and open communication within the group.

Congratulations to this year’s winner Grant Anderson.

Proudly Sponsored by Graymont

Graymont is an emerging global leader in the supply of lime and limestone products. The company, which stretches back more than 75 years, is family owned and serves major markets throughout the world. Striving to be a world-class company necessitates achieving an outstanding level of performance in the crucial area of health and safety. We are continuing to develop and implement organisation-wide safety standards. These emphasise employee involvement through safety committees, internal safety audits, training, and certification, as well as strict adherence to safe work habits. Sponsorship of the Groundspread NZ Health & Safety Award aligns well with our commitment to continuous improvement to health and safety – and our ultimate goal of achieving zero injuries and zero incidents.

Keith Andrews Trucks Innovation Award Winner:
Shane Glassey (Glassey Spreading)

Shane is an easy-go-lucky guy to be around, yet he is extremely determined and adaptable too and these are real strengths of his. Shane is passionate about the benefits of FPA and shows a real determination to prove this.

There are very few Fine Particle Applicator (FPA) trucks in his Canterbury region so Shane has had to take on a huge amount of R&D off his own back to bring his truck up to a Spreadmark standard, and he is always happy to share the knowledge he gains in this process.

He is ahead of his game in all aspects and he leads by example and is always willing to work and help others too. He is VP of our branch and is a very selfless person who shares ideas and always encourages other people.

Shane is positive, adaptable, approachable. He runs a small but mighty business and is really leading the charge in the FPA arena. His efforts encourage others to do more, be better, no excuses.

Shane aspires to secure Spreadmark certification in his FPA truck, to grow his business, and use the R&D he is currently working on to elevate that sector of the industry and commercialise his product once he is happy with it.

He continues to invest heavily in innovation because he wholeheartedly believes in the products he is spreading and the gear he is using. He could be flying under the radar and operate as is, but he is constantly pushing the industry forward with his R&D.

In the current Spreadmark COP, FPA is not included. This is largely due to the lack of a sufficient testing system for that type of application. Most other FPA operators have shied away from joining Groundspread NZ because of this. However, Shane is so passionate about the scheme and FPA that he is constantly working on a testing system so that FPA can be included in the Spreadmark scheme. He has worked with national testers to adapt the system in many different ways to ensure testing to a high standard is possible. FPA inclusion in Spreadmark is now imminent largely due to Shane’s efforts and determination.

This has a huge impact on the industry as there are currently many unregulated FPA operators in NZ making claims they cannot prove, soon they will be able to join the Spreadmark scheme which is of huge benefit to growers/farmers in NZ.

Shane encountered several issues with his truck in this process that engineers were not able to solve. Subsequently, Shane (as a small 2 truck business) has now employed his own R&D specialist, as well as buying the patent for his trucks crushing system so that he can adapt and modify the system and bring his ideas to life and ensure a final spread job that he is finally happy with. This has been a huge process and Shane is constantly striving for excellence in this relatively new application method.

His dedication is admirable and will benefit many.

Congratulations to this year’s winner Shane Glassey and to the exceptional runners-up Matt Hunt and Paul Hoyle.

Proudly Sponsored by Keith Andrews Trucks

Keith Andrews, New Zealand’s largest commercial vehicle dealer, is an established Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner and FUSO specialist providing commercial vehicle sales and service from locations throughout the North Island. The company’s ethos centres on the principle that great people make great businesses, and Keith Andrews is proud to have a team of passionate individuals, who share a common approach to delivering excellent customer service. Keith Andrews proudly sponsors the Innovation Award to support and celebrate the classic Kiwi traits of ingenuity and creativity for the betterment of the Groundspread industry and community.

Ravensdown Young Achiever’s Award Winner:
Hayley Allen (Renwick Transport)

Hayley’s adaptability and versatility in her employer’s business is huge, she can move between different divisions of the company with ease. She is a quick learner who is great with clients and a real team player.

Every day is different for Hayley. She is given a spreadsheet of jobs on the books and then self-manages that list by organising her own days, dealing directly with clients, and managing her own paperwork, timesheet, logbook etc. Her day may involve spreading on a Farm/Vineyard or mixing Fert Brews.

Hayley is always aware of the conditions she is operating in and adjusts accordingly to minimise any potential negative impacts. She is friendly and focused on client satisfaction.

Hayley is positive and willing to help anyone at any time. She encourages others to give things a go and to ask questions which has a positive impact on those around her, especially new additions to our team.

Three years ago, Hayley started at Renwick Transport with her Class 2 licence and can now drive anything in their fleet. She has come such a long way in a short time and is always keen to learn and try new aspects within the business.

She is an integral part of the team and an inspiration to new staff.


Congratulations to this year’s winner Hayley Allen – we can’t wait to see what the future has in store for you in the groundspreading industry.

Proudly Sponsored by Ravensdown

Ravensdown is a fertiliser co-operative. We manufacture and import quality agri-products for our shareholders. Ravensdown’s mission is to enable smarter farming for a better New Zealand. We are proud to support the Young Achiever’s Award. This award fits with Ravensdown’s philosophy of recognising the achievements of young people within agriculture. We already offer agri-scholarships and are delighted to grow our support of youth in agriculture by sponsoring this award.

We believe that by rewarding excellence in this way, we can help ensure that the ground spreading industry continues to attract young talent.