Trial and Demonstration Sites

As well as the extensive research that precedes a cultivar’s release into the market, Agricom run on farm trials around New Zealand to further improve our belief in the products we market. This provides farmers ‘real’ examples of how Agricom cultivars and systems can help different farming systems.

For multiple grazing trials, a cut and carry method is used where a lawn mower ‘harvests’ the grass in each plot; this is weighed and a sample taken out to be dried. This is will ensure that the actual drymatter perecentage (DM %) of the grass is measured, not estimated, so we can get an accurate yield (kg DM/ha) for each plot. A lawn mower is used for harvest to ensure accuracy, as the mower cuts exactly what the animals have access to.

Agricom Stage 3 Trials are run to the same high standards and protocol as the independent National Forage Variety Trialling System ( to ensure reliable results. This is the key to the success of the Stage 3 trialling system. Farmers are invited to visually see the trials at numerous stages throughout the season to ensure a good understanding of the different traits of different cultivars and species.

The Stage 3 Trialling system was set-up in spring 2004, and to date there have been numerous trials placed around New Zealand farms. These trials include annual, Italian, hybrid and perennial ryegrasses, tall fescue, cocksfoot, timothy, chicory and plantain, swede, kale, rape, fodder beet, bulb and leaf turnip and red and white clover.

National Forage Variety Trials

The National Forage Variety Trial (NFVT®) system was set up in 1991 with the help of AgResearch and co-coordinated by the New Zealand Plant Breeding and Research Association (NZPBRA). The NZPBRA is an association of representatives from seed companies with significant involvement in the development and marketing of proprietary cultivars in New Zealand.

All of the NFVT® sites are run to the same set of protocols by seed company representatives and independent trial operators. The trials can be inspected at any time by a member of the NZPBRA to ensure that the trials are run to the correct protocol.

The results of the trials have been summarised into tables which are located below. Please ensure that you read the introduction at the top of the results page to ensure that the graphs are correctly read.

To view the NFVT® trials results below, click on the relevant link:

To view the Forage Value Index from Dairy NZ Click Here