Irrigation New Zealand

In association with Ballance agri-nutrients 

A $2,500 cash prize will be awarded for 'The Best Innovation, Discovery or Achievement that makes a positive contribution, impact or benefit to irrigation in NZ'.

This Award is to celebrate, encourage and promote innovation, and the positive things being undertaken in our communities with and as a result of irrigation. It’s about ordinary people doing extra ordinary things on – farms, schemes, in business or supporting service industries.

Download entry form here

Get a pdf of this webpage: here


  • Technical Innovation – farm, orchard, vineyard or scheme technical advances in irrigation that add value to the process of ‘doing business’
  • Irrigation Enhancing the Environment – projects and research that will lead to environmental improvements
  • Resilient Communities – projects and research inclusive of people and society, cultural, economic and infrastructure benefits of irrigation

Take a look here at previous winners and finalists to get you thinking


  • The prize can be awarded to an individual or team. Only one entry is permitted per person / team
  • We encourage entries and nominations from irrigators, schemes, user groups, environmental groups, industry, and university students
  • The innovation may be new or a reinvention or reapplication of an old technology
  • The innovation must demonstrate a clear, recent (last 5 years) or potential impact to irrigation in NZ
  • The individual or nominated team representative must be either a NZ citizen or a NZ permanent resident
  • For team entries one person must be nominated as the team representative. This person will be the public face for the innovation
  • The winning entrant will be expected to attend the Conference dinner, receiving the award at the INZ conference dinner and speaking with media
  • The innovation must meet current ethical practice and have been carried out largely in NZ


The merit of each entry will be assessed by a judging panel and will be based on.... ‘Innovation in Irrigation’

This is the potential for the new knowledge to have a positive impact on irrigation through technology development or in a manner that will enhance the economic, social, cultural or environmental aspects of irrigation.

For queries phone 03 341 2225 or e-mail

Key Dates:

1st September Entries & Nominations open: Download entry form here

11th October Nominations close

1st November Entries close

4th November Entrants notified by email that entry has been received

4-8 November Judges meet to id shortlisted candidates

View and determine any question (if any) of entrants

8th November Questions sent to entrants as appropriate

14th November Deadline for questions answered and returned for judging

18th November Judging for shortlist

18th November Shortlisted entrants to go to poster stage notified

21st December Poster summary supplied to INZ in PDF format

18th January Panel judging completed

21st January Notification of top 3 shortlisted candidates

January/February Editorial coordination of information for top 3 Posters - Mag

7th-9th April Poster display of shortlisted entries at the INZ conference

8th April Announcement of winner & presentation of award at INZ conference dinner

April Follow up editorial – rural papers

June IrrigationNZ News article on winner


Entries - Up to 500 words maximum. Photos, pictures, diagrams are also encouraged however, the full entry should comprise of no more than 2 full A4 pages including the 500 word summary.

Short-listed Entries - Short-listed entries will be asked to submit a poster for further judging. The poster should successfully communicate the innovation to the wider community.

The top 3 short listed entries will be notified and expected to attend the conference dinner 8th April 2020, Christchurch –

The origin of the images used must be acknowledged

  • The work must be your own – any assistance must be acknowledged on the entry
  • The poster is to arrive in PDF format and must be able to be printed as A1 (594mm x 840mm) for display at the conference
  • Posters will be uploaded onto the competition webpage
  • Judges will view the posters as A3

Finalists The top 3 finalists will be invited to attend the IrrigationNZ conference dinner – in coordination with the event; travel, accommodation and dinner costs will be covered up to the value of $500

Winner - The winner must receive the award in person on April 8th 2020 at the INZ Conference Dinner, Christchurch - Venue to be advised. The winner will also be invited to present their innovation with a 5 minute presentation at the conference dinner (optional).