Seventeen exciting and innovative businesses are in the line up for the Rural Women New Zealand Enterprising Rural Women Awards 2014.
“This is the sixth year we’ve run the Enterprising Rural Women Awards,” says Rural Women National President, Wendy McGowan. “It’s encouraging to see the diversity of businesses being run by women in rural areas and the significant contribution they make to the wider economy.
“Each year we see an increasing sophistication in the marketing and presentation of rural businesses that enter the awards.
“As broadband slowly rolls out into rural communities it is increasing business opportunities and levelling the playing field for rural enterprises, even when operating from remote locations.
“A web presence is so important for online sales and reservations. However, there are businesses who have entered who still have no cellphone coverage, which means added challenges in communicating with customers, and distance to markets is always going to be a factor.”
Through the Enterprising Rural Women Awards, Rural Women NZ raises awareness of women’s entrepreneurship and their input into rural communities, creating local employment and often supplementing on-farm income.
The judges now face the challenging task of choosing finalists in the four entry categories: Love of the Land (sponsored by Agrisea), Help I Need Somebody (sponsored by Access Homehealth), Making it in Rural (sponsored by Spark) and Stay, Play, Rural (sponsored by Xero).
The four category winners will go on to compete for the title of Supreme winner, Enterprising Rural Women Awards 2014.
Entries in this year’s Love of the Land category include a plant nursery, a free range pig farm and an apiary.
In the Help I Need Somebody section there is a firm of accountants, a boutique law firm and an environmental consultancy.
Competing in the Making it in Rural section is a manufacturer of lamb coats, a blueberry venture, a traditional hard cheese maker, a bee product manufacturer, an organic winemaker, and a peony-based healthcare and soap producer.
Tourism operators in the Stay, Play Rural section set the bar high with the inclusion of top end accommodation offered in delightful rural settings, and a walking track car relocation service.
The winners will be announced at a special ceremony to be held on the opening night of the Rural Women NZ national conference in Rotorua on Saturday 15 November.
An introduction to all entrants can be viewed here. Stay tuned for the entrants full introduction weekly from now until November.
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