A century of family farming


She’s a registered nurse but it’s caring for cows rather than patients that spins Megan Moore’s wheels these days.

Megan, her husband Gary and kids Nathan and Chelsea contract milk 420 cows on a 140-hectare farm near Pirongia owned by Megan’s parents John and Kay Lorimer - a farm that’s been in the Lorimer family since 1922 and always supplied the Co-op.

“I’m the fourth generation on this farm”, says Megan. “Farming has been a big part of my life since I was young. I used to spend a lot of time hanging out with Dad on the farm and it was always part of the plan to take over when he got older.”

Megan with her parents Kay & John

Megan nursed for 23 years, both in the UK and New Zealand, and still works as a casual nurse for an urgent care clinic in Hamilton, but relishes the opportunities and challenges that come with dairy farming.

“Every day is different and I love being outdoors rather than being stuck in a clinic or a hospital ward. The nurse in me means I have a strong focus on animal health so being able to identify a cow that’s not 100% and get them sorted is especially rewarding. I also like introducing people to farming, showing them what a great lifestyle it can be.”

It’s the family connection that Megan really values. “Gary and I took over as contract milkers in 2021, and my brother Scott is set to join us fulltime on the farm next season. Mum and Dad live on the farm but we haven’t seen much of Dad on-farm this season. He trusts us to get on with the milking and general farm and animal upkeep side of things and he looks after a 70-hectare runoff nearby where we have our young stock, heifers and some animals reared for beef. He’s supposed to be retiring but it’s also good to have a closed system, especially when bovis was about.”

I also like introducing people to farming, showing them what a great lifestyle it can be.

Megan Moore, Fonterra Farmer

The farm reached Te Tihi status under The Co-operative Difference in 2020 under the previous contract milker and Megan and Gary have ensured it stays that way.

“I used to do the paperwork and record keeping for him, and it’s something that I still do for us”, says Megan. “It’s not something that is a burden for me really. With my background in nursing I’m used to keeping up with paperwork and records for audit purposes and managing changing regulations. The requirements are there to help you to improve your practices and your business so it’s important to keep on top of them. My advice to anyone wanting to get to Te Tihi would be to record things clearly as they happen so you’re not chasing your tail when it’s time to submit your records.”

“Dad was also always conscious of what was on the horizon. We put in a new effluent pond and system about five years ago, the races have been upgraded and we have fenced off all of our drains. Ten hectares of the runoff have been converted to a Waikato Regional Council Reserve and they have funded some native bush planting which has been great for biodiversity.”

Megan is also quick to credit the support of her local Farm Source team, especially her Co-operative Services Area Manager Mary-Anne Shearman.

“The field team support is a big plus of being part of the Co-op and we have a close relationship with Mary-Anne. She’s always very approachable and a great sounding board if there are any issues that we need help or advice on.”

(L-R) Megan, Chelsea, Scott, Nathan, John & Kay