Environmental award celebrates continuous improvement among deer community I Grant Charteris
Evolving their farming around deer's natural browsing patterns and building shared values for the environment and financial sustainability have set this young Hawkes Bay couple on the path to success.
“Financial management has to go hand in hand with the environmental decisions that you're making. You can do it in bite-size achievements within your budget.”
One of this week’s Change Makers is Hawkes Bay deer farmer, Grant Charteris:
The 2021 Elworthy Environmental Award sponsored by SP Corporation and Dr Gyong Jai Lee, a major South Korean marketer of NZ deer velvet, is the premier environmental accolade for deer farmers and was awarded to Grant and Sally Charteris, Forest Road Farm, Central Hawkes Bay recently.
Forest Road Farm is a 327-hectare red deer stud and velvet operation which also runs some beef cattle and Wiltshire sheep. It’s a great example of a sustainable farming business where the environment is being progressively protected and enhanced, with gullies and streambanks fenced off and planted in trees to reduce soil erosion and to minimise sediment run-off.
Soil protection is a key focus of everything they do. For example, care is taken when selecting paddocks for cropping and buffer strips of non-cultivated land are left alongside gullies. Break feeding of crops is avoided and high grass covers are maintained on pasture.