Our Environment

A future-focused strategy with sustainability at the core

Water Use

Handing down productive, profitable farms to feed future generations requires sustainable farming practices. Fertile soil relies on the retention of nutrients and the efficient use of water. The latest systems employed by ALIL shareholders have been designed to apply water with millimetre accuracy. One example is managing crop requirements with data gained from soil moisture probes.

Efficiencies are constantly improving, and this progress is being driven from the farm. ALIL shareholders using border dyke irrigation has reduced from 90% to <1% in just 10 years.

Land Use

Canterbury’s Land and Water Regional Plan (LWRP) sets nutrient limits across groundwater zones. Part of adhering to this plan requires all properties greater than 5ha and losing more than 20kg/N/ha to have a Farm Environment Plan (FEP). Completion of the FEP is a requirement for all ALIL shareholders being supplied with irrigation water. The FEP includes risk assessment and measures land management units and practices against FEP objectives and targets.

Following the FEP process has enabled ALIL shareholders to increase the efficiency of their water and nutrient use through sustainable farming practices that result in improved environmental outcomes, higher productivity, and increased profit.

Owned by 244 local farmers paving the way toward a sustainable,
locally grown future.

Environmental Plans and Nutrient Budgets

ALIL have a discharge consent (CRC185469) that manages nutrient discharge. As part of this consent, ALIL are required to implement the scheme’s Environmental Management Strategy which includes the policies and processes on how nutrient discharges are managed.

This consent mandates specific reporting on an audited self-management approach. This approach results in ALIL writing, implementing, and auditing FEPs for our shareholders. In an oversight capacity, ALIL monitors each shareholder’s environmental performance and confirms their compliance with the resource consent conditions.

Farm Environmental Plan (FEP) Audits

ALIL shareholders complete annual FEPs. This allows each farmer to focus on the management areas specific to their farm type. In doing so the farmer can identify where sensitive receiving environments may be on their property and which environmental improvements will have the biggest positive impact on the environment, farm productivity, and their profit.

An independent on farm assessment of the implementation of each FEP checks that the risks identified in the FEP have been managed and that the good management practices identified in the FEP are being applied. Auditors use a level of confidence (LOC) measure to judge whether a farm is meeting its FEP. A grade of A, B, C, or D determines the success of each farm against its FEP and the time period before the next audit.

To view useful information and resources for an FEP audit click here.

Nutrient Budgets

ALIL shareholders collect farm activity data on production, irrigation application, nutrient application, stock rates, and soil types. This data is used in the nutrient budget to estimate the nutrient flows of the farm. Nitrogen, phosphorus, and water loss via leaching and run-off are specifically tracked.

A certified nutrient management advisor prepares or reviews a nutrient budget to ensure that it meets the required standards of the farm’s FEP.

View a list of Certified Nutrient Management Advisors (CNMAs) in our Document Library.

Documents Links

Sustainable Farming Resources

Visit our document library for a comprehensive collection of resources. Select a category link below or jump directly to the Document Library.

Important Documentation

Informative Resources

ALIL Submissions on National & Regional Draft Policies

Wheat - Ashburton Lyndhurst Irrigation Limited

Get in Touch

Contact our friendly team to learn more about our irrigation scheme and your local farming community.