NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards

Join Rural Women New Zealand and Premier Partner NZI in celebrating the innovation, creativity and entrepreneurial excellence of New Zealand’s rural communities at the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards.   

About the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards

In 2018, RWNZ  refreshed its  Enterprising Rural Women Awards to become the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards.  By broadening the award categories, updating the application process and strengthening the judging criteria, RWNZ and NZI have ensured that the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards provide rural  women  business owners with an outstanding opportunity to showcase the diversity of  their  rural businesses.   The Awards attract extensive media coverage and involve promotional opportunities and business workshops that provide valuable insights into the future of the rural business sector.     

Register now.

The NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards 2020 ceremony is being held in Wellington, on Friday, 2O November 2020 at the Public Trust Hall, 131-135 Lambton Quay, from 6pm.

Draft order of events:

•         6pm: Arrival and refreshments

•         6.30pm: Awards Dinner and Ceremony commences

•         7.30pm: Dinner served

•         9.30pm: Awards Dinner and Ceremony concludes.


Don’t miss out, register online now.

Registrations close on Friday, 30 October 2020 and all registrations and amounts payable are due on this date. Any application for a refund by a registered attendee is subject to the criteria outlined in the RWNZ Refunds Policy.

RWNZ recognises that COVID-19 has the potential to significantly affect with its ability to hold the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards this year. RWNZ therefore reserves the right to exercise its discretion to determine the appropriate course of action and/or remedy which may include postponement and/or cancellation of either or both events. RWNZ will not be liable for any costs incurred by such a determination.


Latest: NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards 2020 are open for entries

The NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards 2020 are now open for entries.

To download the entry form and criteria please click here.

NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards 2019 Supreme Award Winner

AgriSea New Zealand

Seaweed products pioneer AgriSea New Zealand is this year’s Supreme Winner at the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards.“We are often caught up in keeping our heads down, working hard to achieve our goals in our businesses, communities and families,” says AgriSea Business Development Manager Clare Bradley.

“The NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards are an opportunity for both me personally, and our whanau at AgriSea, to take a breather and celebrate where we’ve come from. Thank you Rural Women New Zealand and NZI for this Award and opportunity, it has fortified my passion and dedication for what we do every day.”“AgriSea’s business model and products are epitomised in Clare’s passion, expertise and commitment to her family’s business,” says Rural Women New Zealand National President Fiona Gower.

“The Paeroa-based company’s impressive investment in research, development and innovation is a showcase of a successful, inter-generational, rural agri-business,” says Ms Gower.Seven Category Award winners competed for the Supreme Award this year, which was announced at a ceremony in the Banquet Hall at Parliament. The event was hosted by the Minister for Primary Industries Damien O’Connor on Friday, 22 November 2019.

NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards 2019 Category Award Winners

Emerging Business – a business starting out on its journey and achieving exceptional results

Amanda King owns and operates her business, By The Horns, from her home, a farm near the Rakaia Gorge.  A keen photographer, Amanda has transformed her passion and rural location into a successful online business which sells extraordinary fine art prints and canvases of rural animals, landscapes and seascape images. 

Amanda takes the photographs herself, completes any post production work, adds them to her profile and sells limited and unlimited edition prints through her online store.  She also supplies prints to a limited number of retail stores in New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.  Her online customers are worldwide.

As a mother of two young children, Amanda feels particularly lucky that she can work from the farm and still be present for her children.  Visit to view Amanda’s beautiful work.

The Emerging Business Award is proudly sponsored by ANZ.


Love of the Land – harnessing the potential of New Zealand’s land, environment or products of the land in creating successful business enterprise

AgriSea is an award winning, family owned and operated company which produces an extensive range of seaweed based concentrates and bio stimulants used in the agriculture, horticulture, viticulture and apiculture sectors. 

AgriSea’s products are organically certified and sustainably sourced and the business has shown a long term commitment to creating rural employment, research and innovation, sustainability, a zero-waste business model and community development and support.

Entrant, and AgriSea’s Business Development Manager, Clare Bradley’s passion for her work and commitment to creating sustainable solutions to add value to the rural sector is evident.

The Love of the Land Award is proudly sponsored by the Ministry for Primary Industries.

Creative Arts – acknowledging a business that specialises in creative arts working in a rural environment or using rural materials

Rebecca (Bex) Hayman is brimming with ideas for her business, Whistle & Pop, which makes fashion items and accessories with a rural twist.  She lives and breathes a rural life with her husband and two children on a farm in the remote Hakataramea Valley. 

Whistle & Pop is about sharing a rural lifestyle and capturing its spirit in a mix of elegant and quirky products that can appeal to everyone.  As Whistle & Pop has flourished via its online store, Bex, who is the creative force of nature behind the business, has been able to employ others in a rural location where it can be hard to find work.

The Creative Arts Award is proudly sponsored by Shear Warmth Wool Blankets.

Whistle & Pop celebrates rural life and seeks to add a little country flair to everyone.  Visit Whistle & Pop’s online store at:


Rural Health and Wellbeing Excellence – recognising a business that makes an outstanding contribution to supporting the health and wellness of our rural communities

The winner of the inaugural Rural Health and Wellbeing Excellence Award is Piopio Dental which is owned and operated by Kim Tatham in Piopio.  Piopio Dental offers state of the art dental surgery combined with an emphasis on preventative and restorative dental care in a rural location. 

Just over two years ago, Kim and her husband, Mat, decided that Kim needed to work closer to their farm.  Kim had been commuting to work and having to stay away overnight for 1-2 nights a week and this meant valuable time away from Mat, their two children and the farm.  They took the plunge and Piopio Dental was born.

Piopio Dental now employs three local women and also hosts an annual charitable symposium which brings together dentists from around the North Island for affordable continuing education.  The profits of this symposium are reinvested in the local rural community.

The Rural Health and Wellbeing Excellence Award is proudly sponsored by Access Community Health.

Innovation – an enterprise that challenges the status quo or utilises rural resources to bring something new and innovative to the market.

Advert Media/The Skool Loop App is the largest school app provider in New Zealand using a world first business model to ensure funding of the Skool Loop App is completely free to rural schools. The Skool Loop App connects rural and regional schools to their communities ensuring parents and care givers can receive real time communication directly from their children’s school. This is especially beneficial for rural communities where time and distance can present a barrier to parent/ school communications. The Skool Loop is provided to over 750 schools nationwide ensuring a parent can access all of their school communications in one place.

This innovative business has a head office in Kaikoura and a further branch in Rangiora.  The Skool Loop App owner and award entrant, Sharlene Barnes, grew up in rural and regional New Zealand and is passionate about creating jobs and opportunities in rural areas of NZ and with emphasis on providing flexibility for working parents accommodating school hours and school holidays.

Advert Media /The Skool Loop app is a great example that a technology company can operate to its fullest potential in the rural sector providing excellent income and upskilling rural employees.

The Innovation Award is proudly sponsored by Hynds Limited.

Rural Champion - a person or business who goes above and beyond in supporting the rural sector or rural enterprise

The “champion of rural champions” is this year’s winner of the Rural Champion Award.  Kate Taylor is the owner of CommuniKate which provides writing, journalism, event management, social media, consultancy and photography specialising in rural interests.  Her mission is to make rural New Zealand a better and more sustainable place to live.  Kate lives with husband, Thomas, in Hawke’s Bay.

Kate has worked as a journalist and is the author of 50 Years Young: A History of the Young Farmer of the Year. Her passion for telling New Zealand’s rural story throughout her career has been unwaivering.  She has been self-employed for almost 20 years and is thankful that her business meant she could be at home with her children when they were young and then later, be involved with their schooling, sports and her community.

Kate has been an active member of her community and helps give voice to generations of rural stories through her work. Through CommuniKate, she is a Member of RWNZ and Federated Farmers.  Kate regularly offers her services pro bono for local rural organisations including her local health centre.  She is currently working with the Rural Support Trust on a one-off newspaper.  Kate is also involved with several local sports and community committees and is a volunteer firefighter.

This rural champion leads by example in both words and deeds.

The Rural Champion Award is proudly sponsored by Jarden.

Bountiful Table – a rural business that embraces diverse and unique natural resources to deliver exceptional foods or beverages.

The Clareville Bakery is the winner of our second new category in this year’s Awards.  The Bakery is famous in Wairarapa and has a dedicated local clientele and numerous travellers who have heard about its artisan, award winning baking.  Rose Kloeg, the Award entrant and owner/operator of The Clareville Bakery, started the business with her husband in 2013.  They purchased an old church in Clareville and converted it from an old café to a modern bakery complete with viewing window so that the bakers could greet and interact with the customers. 

The recipe behind The Clareville Bakery is simple: create amazing food made from natural and real ingredients, using time honoured methods of mixing and fermentation and artisan craftsmanship.

The business has grown significantly over the last 5 years and now includes the bakery, a café, a catering service and an online store.  Because of this growth, The Clareville Bakery has been able to provide employment opportunities in its rural community and support local primary producers.  In addition to a wide range of community projects including the Wellington Free Ambulance and numerous rural sporting teams, this year Rose and her team have provided 3000 player of day certificates to local kids who each received a voucher for a free doughnut from the Bakery.

The Bountiful Table Award is proudly sponsored by Massey University.

“The NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards are a tremendous showcase for rural women….an irresistible opportunity to learn more about yourself and grow your business.”  

-Marie Taylor of Plant Hawke’s Bay, Supreme Award Winner 2018   

For our other 2018 Award Winners please click here.