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Way to grow .. Dan Suddaby (left), representing the competition's main sponsor, Bayer, acknowledges overall winner Francois Tillard. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

The Waianakarua and Waiareka Valley Lions Clubs raised $45,000 with their third annual winter crop-growing competition.

The funds are being given to the Otago Regional Rescue Helicopter Trust.

This year’s contest attracted more than 100 entries across four crop options: fodder beet, kale, swede and winter rape. Irrigated crops were judged separately from dryland crops. Some farmers entered several paddocks.

A prizegiving and charity auction were held in the Weston Hall last Friday night. More than 150 people attended, bidding for some 150 auction items given by local businesses. They ranged from steam mops to vouchers for agricultural services and products.

Much of the food and beverages for the evening were also donated, a Lions spokesman said.

Lions members carried out the first round of crop judging, under guidance from local experts, then the experts took over to decide the winners.

RESULTS:

Fodder beet – irrigated: Francois Tillard, 29.5 tonnes per ha, 1; Francois Tillard, 28.5 tonnes, 2.

Fodder beet – dryland: Francois Tillard, 33 tonnes per ha, 1; Francois Tillard, 31 tonnes, 2.

Kale – irrigated: Ross Isbister, 11.9 tonnes per ha, 1.

Kale – dryland: John and Marie Dickie, 13.5 tonnes per ha, 1; Phillip Nicholson, 13 tonnes, 2; Mike Holland, 12.5 tonnes, 3.

Rape – irrigated: Daniel Isbister, 1.

Rape – dryland: Conrad Sim, 7.8 tonnes per ha, 1; Geoff Keeling, 7.2 tonnes, 2; Jarron Farmer, 6.4 tonnes, 3.

Swede – dryland: Dane Burke, EGL Glencoe, 15.7 tonnes per ha, 1; Ian Hunter, 12.5 tonnes, 2; Phillip Nicholson, 11.6 tonnes, 3.

Overall winner: Francois Tillard for his dryland fodder beet.