The arable industry is a small, but vital part of New Zealand’s primary industries.  Traditionally, the arable industry focused on production of cereal crops (wheat, barley and maize) and rye grass seed, but in recent years to optimise profitability and productivity, the industry has diversified to include production of other cereal grain crops, specialist small seed and vegetable crops, forage brassicas, and seed for multiplication.  New Zealand’s weed, pest and disease free status means that arable farmers are world leaders in seed production for multiplication onto the international market.  Growers of cereal grains supply 25 per cent of wheat used to produce New Zealand bread, all beer made in New Zealand is produced using domestically produced malting barley.  Growers also produce a significant amount of feed which goes into the livestock industry and also produce all the pasture grasses used by this sector. According to the BERL report, the arable industry contributed $737m to GDP in 2015.

The views of members of the Arable Industry Group are represented by the Industry Group Council (consisting of Arable Chairpersons from most Federated Farmers provinces), an elected Executive and Chairperson.  Federated Farmers Arable focuses on developing sensible policy to influence local, regional and central Government, wider industry and community groups.  Activities of recent years include:

  • Biosecurity including velvetleaf, pea weevil and blackgrass responses, and submitting on draft Import Health Standards of interest
  • Ensuring that the fire permitting for crop residue burning is fit for purpose and meets the needs of all parties involved
  • Seed certification
  • Review of the Plant Variety Rights Act
  • Arable Industry Promotion.

To contact a member of the Executive, Council or Industry Group Policy Advisor please click here.

Arable Industry Group News

Rural Connectivity Survey - reminder

Posted on 27/06/2022
In a few days’ time, we are closing our Rural Connectivity Survey, where you tell us how connectivity on your farm rates

Rural Connectivity Survey 2022

Posted on 21/06/2022
It's that time of the year again where we ask you to tell us how you rate connectivity on your farm in our Rural Connectivity Survey

HWEN: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Posted on 8/06/2022
Finally, some reflections – this process has been hard. The hardest part has been the inability to keep farmers informed of the process, the direction it was heading in, the roadblocks, the frustrations, etc.

Arable Industry Policy Work

National Feed Coordination Service activated

Posted on 9/04/2022
The National Feed Coordination Service has been activated by the Ministry of Primary Industries to support farmers sourcing feed, priority areas are those affected by recent flooding and drought conditions.

Submission on the National Environmental Standards- Drinking Water

Posted on 4/04/2022
Federated Farmers NZ and Beef & Lamb NZ have jointly submitted on the NES-DW. We strongly oppose the proposed changes on the basis.

Mid-Season Farm Confidence Report - February 2022

Posted on 9/03/2022
This report summarises the February 2022 Federated Farmers’ Mid-Season Farm Confidence survey results. The survey is undertaken twice a year (January and July); this study is the 25th iteration.

Arable Events

Arable Awards

Posted on 23/06/2022
Celebrate those in the Arable industry and the great things that have been done for the wider agricultural sector. Thursday 4 August at the Te Pae Convention Centre, Christchurch.


Newsletter to Participants in Certified Seed Production

Posted on 23/11/2021
Welcome to the first newsletter from the New Zealand Seeds Authority (NZSA).

Arable Reports

Arable Reports from the 2020 AGM

Posted on 4/08/2020


Red Clover Moth

Posted on 18/08/2020
The red clover Case Bearer moth has recently been found in Auckland and Canterbury - for more information see this factsheet

Domestic Feeds, Information, and Traceability

Posted on 18/08/2020
All farmers are required to complete a domestic feed declaration form if they are selling locally grown crops into the dairy industry

Crop Residue Burning Help Factsheet

Posted on 20/02/2019
Federated Farmers and Fire and Emergency New Zealand have developed a step by step guide to explain the application process...

Contact us