Passion for New Zealand sheep farming

When Brazilian Dayanne Almeida chose to settle in New Zealand, it was our expertise in sheep farming that attracted her.

She now rewards that passion by promoting the country’s sheep sector to the world through her vast network of social media channels.

Almeida, an animal science graduate, fell in love with sheep during a field day in her home country of Brazil.

“Experience abroad, living abroad, learning a new language were all exciting things that I guess would be listed alongside sheep farming. But nothing was as important as learning all about sheep farming in New Zealand,” she said. Rural News.

She sent over 500 emails over a two-year period, eventually receiving a response from a Central Hawke’s Bay ram breeder who was happy to hire her.

Initially, Almeida wanted to stay in New Zealand for three to four weeks, but that turned into five years working on the farm.

She says the spirit of Kiwi farmers is admirable.

“I usually tell Brazilian farmers that whatever Kiwi farmers decide to do, they will put their minds and hearts into it and achieve it through their mindset,” she says.

“DIY, team and community spirit, hard work, good attitude, initiative, incredible resilience and honesty are among my top 10 characteristics of Kiwi farmers that I highlight from Brazilian farmers when I am asked what the secret to sheep farming success in New Zealand is.

Life in New Zealand was “a shock” to begin with, admits Almeida.

“Any big city has its challenges, but it was quite a change to come to New Zealand and live here,” she says, adding that the culture was another shock.

However, she found New Zealand to be more relaxed.

“I felt so welcomed and loved the community spirit, the strong desire to help others so everyone had a chance to try,” she adds.

“On the other hand, it’s not so easy to make friends here. Kiwis are more reserved, don’t show or struggle to show affection as naturally as we do [Brazilians] To do.

“But they never judged me for being who I am in any place I’ve worked and any team I’ve been on.”

Since arriving in New Zealand, Almeida has taken to social media using her “Canal Sheepnutter” Facebook and Instagram accounts to introduce thousands of people to the New Zealand farming lifestyle.

She says it was born out of a need to find purpose and something to help people in Brazil and beyond.

“So I started sharing my daily life on the farm first with my friends on Facebook, then I created a page to expand my audience in South America,” she says.

The page has led to invitations to speak at agricultural events in Brazil.

“It always amazes me how other countries view New Zealand agriculture as the leader in efficiency and sustainability, more than what our own Kiwi farmers take credit for,” Almeida told Rural News.

“Working, studying and sharing my life in New Zealand has helped me enormously to build my portfolio and to be recognized in the sheep farming sector in Brazil.”

About Keneth T. Graves

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