Jim Coster has been farming Mataiwhetu Station for almost 60 years (his family
purchased the property on his 21st birthday) and now his eldest son, Allen, manages operations.
The farm was originally rundown with leaky fences, rudimentary sheep yards, a basic woolshed and no cattle yards. About a quarter of the 300ha was covered in fern and manuka, and plenty of gorse.
Today the sheep and dairy grazing station has been heralded as a sustainable success. The former Meat & Wool Board monitor farm, and supreme winner of the Bay of Plenty Ballance Farm Environment Awards, has benefited from technology and environmental practices.
Jim said measures had been put in place on the farm located in the lower Kaimai Ranges, to preserve the fauna, flora and Mangakaiwhiria Stream that meanders through the property. Thousands of trees were planted, most waterways fenced and land around the stream