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Client Stories » Duncan and Michelle Brown

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  • Date:
    23/02/2016
  • Farm name:    
  • Name:
    Duncan and Michelle Brown
  • Location:
    Pongaroa, Tararua, New Zealand

From no plan to no stopping us!

“It was tough going for us just before we joined the Growfarm® team. Now we know where we are going and how to get there. There is no going back!”

Life has changed incredibly for Duncan and Michelle Brown, Growfarm® clients from Pongaroa, Tararua, New Zealand. Even their banker says their progress has been nothing short of exceptional over the last 2½ years. “We are thankful for a friend passing on our names to Brendon from Growfarm® because we have learned how to look at our business properly from a business point of view and also what we can do to work smarter, not harder, to achieve our goals,” reflects Michelle.

Having started on their current block (a piece of land that seemed like the farm in the district that no-on else wanted to farm), tough seasons and poor animal performance took the gloss of a promising farming career under their own steam. “We didn’t like how under the conventional mindset we were behind the game with a lack of clarity on where we were really heading,” says Michelle. “Stock performance was poor and we had no strategies for dealing proactively with challenging seasons. After coming on board with Growfarm® we saw that the system for generating profit under any season and market conditions was actually quite logical!”

Duncan agrees. “Once we understood profit periods, which animals were making profit, which ones weren’t and at what times of year, the fog tended to clear enough to make forward progress. Results got better and better because we worked hard at dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s in terms of stocking rate, animal condition and target pasture covers at the key times of the year. It wasn’t easy going through that transition and we encountered many potential challenges. But they were mainly because the profit system was new to us. We knew that to get results and get value from the system we had to work at it and boy are we glad we did!”

“We learned how to set meaningful goals for us and how to focus on fully feeding profit animals during profit periods. We got rid of unnecessary animals and put our energies into what we needed to do to get the results we wanted.” Michelle adds, “we have managed now to work more fertilizer into the budget on top of generating more spare cash, which is helping to move things on up. We are very happy to be keeping it simple and doing what it takes!”

Along the journey there was the birth of their daughter, as well as health challenges for both Duncan and Michelle. By keeping clear on the pathway forward and on the bigger picture they were able to keep the focus where it needed to be. “Now we have clarity and certainty about the way forward, including our next steps in developing towards our business goals. We have belief in ourselves that we can do it, that we can make it happen. As far as we are concerned there is no stopping us!” laughs Duncan.

“We like how the Growfarm® System allows any farmer on any farm in any location to make profit, regardless of all of the traditionally accepted constraints. We know that wherever our next steps take us we can create results. The confidence and belief in ourselves now is something we wouldn’t swap for anything!”