Photo courtesy of Shane

Shane Kelly (Ireland) - 2023/2024

I was with grain and food for the planting season right through to maize harvest. I was made feel very welcome from day one. They have a great team of staff working there that will keep a smile on your face. There is a great deal of knowledge to be learned from some of the walking encyclopedias in the workshop once you are willing to learn. Once you aren't afraid of getting stuck in and getting your hands dirty you will fit in well and have a great time

Shane Kelly (Country Louth Ireland )

Jack and Taylor (Canada) - 2023

Our main goal before coming overseas was to operate machinery in the beautiful country of New Zealand and Grain and Food made that possible. We started work right in the busy maize harvest season so there was plenty of work and hours to be made. One of the best things about working for Grain and Food is being valued as a worker and having a sense of “at home” feeling. Darren and Jonathan along with the other staff were kind and approachable making the whole experience of living and working in a new country very comfortable.

 While this season was different compared to others due to extreme weather events, the Grain and Food team were able to overcome many obstacles, working together to get the job done. We worked some long days but there’s always a great sense of achievement that follows.

 Our time here was short (4 weeks) but it definitely gave us an experience of a lifetime.

 We thank you for the opportunity to work here and we hope to see you guys in the future!

 Jack and Taylor

Photo courtesy of Grain & Food

Photo courtesy of Grain & Food

Barnaby (England) - 2017/2018 Season

My time at grain and food for the grass/maize season was simply  fantastic. What I especially liked is that your treated like family instead of just an employee which can be pretty nerve racking when your in a new country on your own but never the less the whole team made it very warm welcoming

I enjoyed all the jobs but In particularly I loved operating the brand new Kuhn combi baler which was just a dream to operate and it definitely kept the local farmers happy. As well as work I was lucky to get a few weeks off to go visit other parts of New Zealand and it surely is a breath taking place. My only biggest regret is I didn’t do it sooner, hopefully they’ll have me back for next season.


Photo courtesy of Aaron
Photo courtesy of Aaron

Alastair (Scotland) - 2016/2017 Season

The time I spent at Grain and Food was great, I was involved in over 6 months of a tough season due to wet conditions. This didn't phase the spirited team and we all worked together to complete work to a good standard. We were given some time off during January to tour some of New Zealand which was a road trip to Invercargill and back. On Sundays we went out in groups to see local attractions and activities, truly amazing country to visit!

A friend and I travelled out from Scotland for our first long haul trip and were made to feel very
welcome with all the staff being approachable with ease, the accommodation soon turned into a friendly home. A good lunch and evening meals are all made on site with suggestions welcome, we even had a full Christmas dinner as a group.

I was given great
opportunities to learn during my time there with a range of tasks I hadn't done before, the more experienced members were always happy to help with any issues. Being a time served agricultural technician I was welcomed into many maintenance and repair tasks on all equipment which other contractors tend to leave out from overseas staff. Grain and food certainly excels in keeping machinery in order and looking smart on the job. A range of older and newer equipment are all used to get through the work which are all great to drive.

Thanks again for the opportunity and the
fantastic time we had. Hope to see you all again at some stage!


Photo courtesy of Alastair
Photo courtesy of Alastair

John & Lee-Ann (Scotland) - 2015/2016 Season

Our time at grain and food was fantastic!

Although Lee-Ann worked elsewhere, we were both made to feel a
part of the grain and food family. We were there for nine months and saw nearly every aspect of the contracting business.

Darren and Jonathan were
great bosses and always gave everyone an equal opportunity to carry out different tasks. Weather it be put in the field or in the workshop. The machinery was always spic and span every day after use, and no questions were asked over maintenance. I really liked the fact that not every tractor was brand new, I like the old school as much as the new ones, which very few people have.

Every one at grain and food are
great people, really helpful and always up for a laugh, which is great when most of the seasonal staff have travelled from the other side of the world, so the open arms make a big difference.

All in all its just a great place and we loved it, so much so that we are
moving to New Zealand, Grain and Food kindly gave me the opportunity of full time employment!

See yous all very soon, regards John & Lee-Ann

Photo courtesy of John & LeeAnn
Photo courtesy of John & LeeAnn

Eoin (Ireland) - September to May 2014/2015 Season

Just a few words on my time at Grain & Food season 2014/2015:
My time working at Grain & Food Ltd was one of the best experiences of my life it was a new experience for me.
The environment at work was very friendly and professional with the staff and management and I got on with both staff and management brilliantly but we were not just treated as worker there we were all treated as friends and family and would have absolutely no problem working for Grain & Food Ltd again.

The machinery is well maintained and looked after and was a pleasure to drive and work with.

The hospitality and Grain and Food was top class.The accommodation was lovely and never got a bad meal (lunch or dinner) and everything that we needed was in the house.

New Zealand is a really lovely country with really lovely people and would advise anyone that get the chance to travel there and work for Grain and Food to grab it.I have no regrets on taking on this experience and hope to return some day.


William - (Northern Ireland) 2014/2015 Season

My time out at Grain & Food was the best time of my life. From I landed in New Zealand til I left I was made feel very welcome by everyone at Grain & Food. They are really nice and helpful people to work for.

One of my favourite things about Grain & Food is their
can do attitude. They have equipment to carry out nearly any job and wouldn't hesitate to do. I also really like that got a experience in all jobs and weren't just stuck doing the one job all season.

New Zealand is a
beautiful country and has plenty worth seeing. I will definitely be going back

Many thanks William Graham

Photo Grain & Food
Photo Grain & Food

Shane (Ireland) - May 2011- May 2013

I've eventually got time to write a few kind words about my experience working for grain and food. I think I started around may 2011 to may 2013.

The time I spent working for Grain & food was one of my best experiences in NZ. When I started it was the off season but there was plenty to do including some winter projects. As an employee I learned and gained a great knowledge and experience in most aspects of agriculture. Due to me being part of the team for a long while I was treated like a member of the family. Even though I have expanded my opportunities in NZ elsewhere I can say they were a great company to work for and all the machinery was all up to date. Great work environment and you get well looked after by a great bunch of people.

Hope to see ye all soon


Jannik and Hannes (Germany) - 2019/2020 Season

Our time at Grain and Food was great. 

We are 2 Germans and started our New Zealand adventure here. We had a great time here. Some days were long and hard but we learned a lot and made great new friends. 

Everybody was always really nice and helped you. We would have loved to work there longer but the time in New Zealand was really limited. 

We say thank you for everything. 

Jannik and Hannes

Darren (Ireland) - Autumn 2018

I spent two months with Grain and Food and I had a ball.

I came up from the south island having worked with a larger contracting outfit. With the lads (Grain & Food) you are more than a number and its like joining a big family
Living on site is excellent with meals provided every day and a packed lunch made for the following day. 
Hours were long but the craic was good, and with Sundays off there was always time to get a bit of surfing in at Raglan. :) Work was varied and there was always something to be done in the workshop on the wet days. 
Overall a great experience and would recommend to a friend 

Warm Regards  

Stephen (Northern Ireland) - 2016/2017 Season

Thoroughly enjoyed my time working at Grain and Food!

The Accommodation was first class and dinner brought to the field when working late was a nice touch! Was given plenty of opportunities to operate a wide variety of kit! Plenty of work to do even on wet days in the workshop! A mix of modern and old school tractors keeps the jobs interesting! Great team to work with! Time off in January allowed us to travel round and see New Zealand! Would definitely recommend Grain and Food!

Kind regards,

Stephen Fleck 

Photo courtesy Stephen
Photo courtesy Stephen

Aaron (Scotland) - 2016/2017 Season

I spent an entire season working with Grain & Food, from October of 2016 up to May of 2017 and thoroughly enjoyed all of it. All the staff and clients were very friendly and approachable which is always good when you arrive in a new country

It was a challenging season due to adverse weather conditions with the maize harvest being severely delayed due to extreme rain but the all the staff pulled their weight and the can do attitude of the company allowed us to adapt to the conditions and keep harvesting. While working at Grain & Food I gained a lot of experience in both my tractor driving and maintenance. A highlight for me was being trained up on one of the loader wagons as I hadn't had any experience operating one before. 

Regular, thorough maintenance and repairs (when required) are carried out on all tractors and implements giving everyone a good opportunity to practice any mechanical skills they have and learn many new ones. This thorough maintenance can be clearly seen by looking around the yard with many older machines running just as well as the new.

I travelled to NZ with one of my friends who was also employed by Grain & Food, we were given ample time off to see many of the wonderful sights NZ has to offer. Sundays were generally our day off with Saturday also given where possible, we also received 3 weeks holiday in January which we used to go and see the South Island. The on site accommodation was very liveable and having our lunch and evening meals provided made life that bit easier especially when doing
longer shifts during the peak times.

Overall I had a great time and am very grateful for the opportunities given to me.

Thanks again and hope to see you all again at some point!


Photo courtesy of Alastair
Photo courtesy of Alastair

James M (Scotland) - March to April 2015/2016 Season

Though I spent a relatively short 6 week period working with you all I very much enjoyed my time.

I'd like to give special credit to how
welcoming you all were and how quickly I felt like part of your team :)

There was
always work available for someone willing to turn their hand to the workshop whether that be for machine maintenance or simply sweeping the floor, which is good if weather is holding up harvest proceedings.

Grain and food have a fantastic
variety of "old school" and new machines too, equally brilliant to drive as maintenance is strong and machines are cleaned daily after use.

Looking forward to seeing you all again before the year is out!

Kind regards

Photo courtesy of Alastair
Photo courtesy of Alastair

James P (Scotland) - 2015/2016 Season

I worked for Grain and Food in the 2015/2016 Maize season and I had an absolutely great time, always good fun and plenty of variety of work and jobs in the workshop, and well cared for with food and sleeping accommodation, would recommend to anyone interested.....(if u love straight pipes and exhaust notes this is 100% the place to be)

Photo courtesy of John & LeeAnn
Photo courtesy of John & LeeAnn

Ronan (Ireland) - 2012/2013 Season

After touring around New Zealand's South and North island experiencing every thing from Snow boarding, bungee jumping glaciers, to the scenery of the Coromandel Peninsula or the 90 mile beach I thought I seen all that New Zealand had to offer.
In November 2012 I still had 6 weeks before my return flight to Ireland. I wasn't quite sure what to do with myself, luckily Grain & Food gave me a Job, a bed, food & a wage.
Unlike most people who came with lots of experience I was very green, so I was very grateful Darren & Jonathan give me a chance.
I enjoyed it so much I came back out in February for another 11 months.
I don't believe I have ever learnt so many skills in such a short space of time on any other job I have ever had.
Regardless I previous experience if you come with the right attitude willing to work and learn Grain & Food is a great place to be.
A good lunch provided and every night we had a lovely home cooked meal, I felt we were treated like part of the family. We worked hard but we had a good laugh, most days.
The group of lads were great, most Sunday's we went away somewhere we went luging, skydiving, white water rafting & go karting to name a few. I have such great memories of my time & the people I met in Grain & Food.

I would highly recommend Grain & Food as great place to work. You will be very well looked after from genuine sincere people.

All the best,
Ronan Hoban

Photo courtesy of John & LeeAnn
Photo courtesy of John & LeeAnn