Helping cardholders maximise farm profits by getting the best deals possible has been helped by Ruralco developing an extensive and strong network of supply companies throughout the country, extending across all aspects of farm business.
Whether it is seeds in the ground, fuel to power the tractor or energy to power the farm dairy shed or irrigator, Ruralco’s relationships with respected suppliers gives cardholders the peace of mind they are getting a quality service or product at the best possible price.
But deals and services are inevitably about people and relationships, and Ruralco staff will often live and work in the areas they service, helping build those relationships on a personal level as much as a business level.
The values of community, success and integrity extend to Ruralco suppliers that share the same goals including Meridian, Ruralco’s energy partner for electricity supply to cardholders.
The Meridian-Ruralco partnership has proven to be a win:win opportunity for the energy supplier and co-operative to fulfil their joint goals to provide the best possible service and price to their valued rural customers and shareholders, ensuring farm operations benefit, along with the communities they are both so prominent within.
Ruralco has benefitted by having a relationship with one of the country’s largest, most sustainable energy providers, while Meridian has enjoyed gaining access to some of the country’s largest farming electricity users seeking the best deals possible for major farm businesses often relying upon electricity for irrigation.
To share their appreciation of cardholder’s loyalty, Meridian and Ruralco recently hosted a group of long-time loyal farmer customers on a trip to the capital, mixing up a bit of company information, culture and of course an All Blacks test game.
Consisting of 10 cardholders, their partners and some Meridian staff the group headed to Wellington on a mid-morning flight and on arrival headed to Meridian’s West Wind Farm.
Located at Makara on Wellington’s south-west coast the 62 turbine operation can generate up to 144mW of electricity, enough for about 62,000 average homes a year.
The funnelling effect of Cook Strait means the site is ideal for wind generation with its strong, consistent wind speeds. The 11 year old wind operation is based around a working sheep farm operation, and also includes three walkways in a recreation area.
The tour provided by Meridian’s wind maintenance and development manager, Chris Moore, gave an excellent insight to the engineering within the turbine systems, and the value of a clean renewable energy source.
That afternoon some of the group opted to head to Te Papa, taking the opportunity to catch the memorable Gallipoli exhibit. Then it was off to the highlight of the trip, the All Blacks- South Africa test game at Wellington Stadium.
The close, hard fought game was appreciated by the enthusiastic supporters, revelling in the atmosphere that only Wellington can produce.
A much appreciated sleep in the next day gave the group an opportunity to enjoy Wellington’s waterfront, then visit Meridian’s head office overlooking the harbour, and get an insight into the workings of the electricity market.
Meridian Agribusiness Key Account Manager Glenn McWhinnie said the two days proved a memorable time for all the participants.
“The feedback we have had from our customers who went was that it was a chance to just get a break away from the farm for a short time, spend some time seeing a few different aspects of Meridian, and Wellington. For us it was a great opportunity to say thanks to some loyal clients.”
Tracey Gordon, Ruralco Energy Account Manager, also welcomed the opportunity to catch up with some valued customers and thank them for their loyalty.
“We focus a lot on building good relationships with our clients and recognising they all have quite varied needs when it comes to electricity, and it’s great to bring them together for a social occasion.”