Sep 8, 2023
We’re kicking off a series on profiling your Branch Chairs and thought we’d start with the newest. The Marlborough Branch NZDFA elected a new chair at their recent AGM. Welcome to Geoff Hayes.
My father started deer farming in the early 1980’s, serving on the Marlborough branch of the DFA as chairman for 7 years and on the committee for 15 years.
My wife Nic and I have been farming Ben Morven Farm since 2012. We have two teenage boys who help out on the farm as well. The farm has been in our family for 95 years.
We run deer, sheep, beef and also have a vineyard on 115 hectares. We lease an additional 40 hectares. We have planted all our waterways with natives, planted some erosion with tagasaste (tree lucerne) and am currently planting eucalyptus on another very bad erosion block.
Due to the size of our farm we have moved away from breeding and currently only run stags for velveting which very much suits our hot, dry climate here in Marlborough.
I have been a member of the Tasman-Marlborough advance party since it started. I very much appreciate the contacts I have made, and the practical advice has been invaluable. I have also attended the National Advanced Party workshops and have been a part of the Next Generation Programme.
Before heading back home to the family farm, I completed a Bachelor of Commerce at Lincoln University and worked in Christchurch for Heinz-Watties, Meridian Energy, and Frucor Suntory.
Outside of farming I am either fishing, mountain biking, or supporting my boys with sport.
- Geoff Hayes, Marlborough Branch Chair