Jake Jarman from Taranaki-Manwatu wins 2021 FMG Young Farmer of the Year

First time competitor, Jake Jarman, 24, took the title in front of a sell-out crowd of almost 700 in Christchurch on Saturday, 3 July.

The ANZ Relationship Associate, representing the Taranaki Manawatu region, was a mix of overwhelmed, excited and a bit relieved that it was all over. “I’m just also so incredibly thankful to so many people”.

Jarman said he was determined to give Grand Final his best shot after initially signing up to the contest to just give it a go. “I loved the practical day, particularly the challenge of having to multitask under time pressure and be a bit strategic”

Jake said he never dreamed he’d win the title of FMG Young Farmer of the Year but was immensely proud of the achievement and hoped it would inspire others.

Jake is a member of the Inglewood Young Farmers Club, and has been the fifth generation to work his family dairy farm.

He also worked as a farm systems research graduate with Dairy Trust Taranaki.

The 2021 Contest was met with excitement and some high calibre competition—with 7 of the strongest competitors vying for the title. Now into its 53rd year, The FMG Young Farmer of the Year Contest is the flagship event for NZ Young Farmers and tests every aspect of modern farming across the whole supply chain, while further showcasing our country’s food and fibre story.

The Grand Final

This is a full-on three day event including head-to-head competition plus technical elements, such as an innovation project and interview challenge. The contestants must also deliver a convincing speech on a topic given to them just a few days beforehand.

The last challenge is the infamous quiz, where contestants battle it out in six, buzzer beater rounds of agricultural and general knowledge questions.

Tikokino Young Farmer, Joseph Watts was named runner up FMG Young Farmer of the Year, and also won the Agri Skills Award. Whangarei Young Farmer Calvin Ball, 31, took out third place and also won the Community Footprint award.

FMG People's Choice Award

This year’s FMG People’s Choice Award hit record level votes—smashing previous numbers in just its first week alone. Congratulations to our winner Kieran McCahon from Hamilton City Club.

The award was introduced by FMG in 2016 to give the finalists experience in marketing themselves in the sector and to encourage local clubs and the public to get more involved with the Contest. Kieran did a stellar job, showcasing his skills across social media and strategic placement of his mobile billboards. Kieran’s mullet is now world famous in NZ, after he cut it off to raise awareness for rural mental health. For winning he received a $2,000 New Zealand experience and $2,000 for his Waikato/Bay of Plenty club.

Seven Sharp

Originally a radio contest, Young Farmer of the Year was first televised in 1981 from a nightclub in Auckland. The last time any content was televised was back in 2016.

FMG worked with New Zealand Young Farmers and Seven Sharp to highlight the Contest in an attempt to spark interest for its return to our television screens in the future.

"FMG Young Farmer of the Year Contest is a special way to showcase the excellence and achievement of young farmers in this country. These are the seven best young farmers in the nation for 2021 and we're right alongside celebrating with them and their communities." says Michelle Stevens, FMG National Sponsorship Manager.

FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year

The newly introduced FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year (formally TeenAg) saw secondary school students from seven districts competing in teams of two, tackling similar modules to their older members. Congratulations to Eddie Millichamp and Sophie Adkins from Mount Hutt College.


Congratulations Ben Hartshorne,12, Dustin Young, 12, and Henry Chittock,13—the talented trio from Blue Mountain College, West Otago for winning the 2021 AgriKidsNZ competition. This is for our primary school-aged children and runs alongside the Contest.