Subsidiaries and partnerships

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Genetics

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Genetics is the government-backed subsidiary of B+LNZ Ltd that brings together New Zealand’s existing sheep and beef genetics research and innovation through the consolidation of SIL, the B+LNZ Central Progeny Test and Ovita (AgResearch was a partner in the Ovita consortium along with B+LNZ and government, who together funded research into sheep genomics).

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Genetics driving theme is building stronger genetics. It does this by focusing on industry-relevant outcomes and adoption. B+LNZ Genetics enables farmers to make the most of new and existing genetic technologies for sheep and beef cattle breeding, to breed the animals New Zealand needs for the future.

For more visit the B+LNZ website


Biopolymer Network Limited

The Biopolymer Network, a New Zealand based research company, is focused on producing bio-based products and process for commercial applications.

Shareholders AgResearch, Plant and Food Research and Scion have come together to create scientific and technological excellence in the conversion of sustainable natural resources to biopolymers and biocomposites. Key areas of research for this successful research collaboration are bio-based foams, natural fibres, natural ingredients for personal care and industrial applications and bio-based resins

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DEEResearch Limited

DEEResearch is a joint venture between the deer industry and AgResearch with representation from all deer industry sectors and all deer research providers. Industry-good research is undertaken to support the profitable and sustainable development of the New Zealand deer industry.

DEEResearch is funded by industry levies collected by Deer Industry New Zealand and by the Foundation for Research Science and Technology through AgResearch. Industry good research relating to velvet antler is not funded by DEEResearch. This is work undertaken by Velvet Antler Research New Zealand Ltd.

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Farmax Limited

Farmax is a decision support tool which accurately models the complex biological system that is pastoral farming. AgResearch scientists originally developed the technology to allow pastoral farms to be accurately modelled, based on the fundamental principles of animal feed intake requirements and pasture quality and quantity.

That original work was commercialised in 1993 by Farmax Ltd with AgResearch retaining a share in the business. Farmax software is now used by many consultants and farmers in the sheep and beef as well as dairy industries.

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AgResearch is a founding partner in the Palmerston North-based FoodHQ, which offers one door access to expertise across the food value chain. With the power of world leaders in innovation within New Zealand’s eight leading agri-food organisations, its breadth of skills give FoodHQ the most comprehensive suite of pre- and post-farm gate expertise in New Zealand.

Other partners in FoodHQ are AsureQuality, BCC, ESR, Fonterra, Massey University, Plant and Food Research, Riddet Institute, Manawatu District Council and Palmerston North City Council.

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Grasslanz Technology

AgResearch’s understanding of plant and endophyte technologies, such as metabolomics and epigenetics, leads the supply chain and supports the development of a new generation of livestock and plant-derived products. Subsidiary Grasslanz Technology takes these technologies to an international market.

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Johne’s Disease Research Consortium

The Johne’s Disease Research Consortium operates in accordance with a science plan whose objective is to provide tools for the New Zealand farming community and livestock industries to improve control of Johne’s disease across the sheep, beef, deer and dairy industries.

The members of the consortium are AgResearch, DEEResearch, DairyNZ, Fonterra, Beef + Lamb NZ, Massey University, Otago University and LIC.

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Decision support for on-farm nutrient management

Overseer® is a strategic nutrient management tool for farmers, advisors and policy makers and is widely used throughout New Zealand. It allows nutrient budgets to be constructed for many enterprises, including dairy, sheep, beef, deer, dairy goats and fruit, vegetables and arable crops.

The model calculates the nutrient flows in a farming system and identifies potential for risk of environmental impacts through calculation of nutrient loss as run-off and leaching, and as greenhouse gas emissions.  As well as supporting on-farm advice, it is increasingly being used by regional councils in developing and implementing catchment water quality objectives and policies.

AgResearch has been involved in the development of Overseer since the mid-1990s.Overseer is jointly owned by the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Fertiliser Association and AgResearch.

For more visit

Contact: Dr Caroline Read
Overseer General Manager


Pastoral Genomics Consortium

Pastoral Genomics is a New Zealand research consortium for forage improvement through biotechnology.

Pastoral Genomics is an industry-good organization funded by the Ministry of Science & Innovation, DairyNZ, Fonterra, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, DEEResearch and AgResearch.

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Pastoral Greenhouse Gas Research Consortium

The PGgRc is an investment vehicle that aims to understand and provide mitigation solutions for greenhouse gases produced by grazing animals.

The Consortium members are AgResearch, Beef+Lamb NZ, DairyNZ, DEEResearch,  Fertiliser  Association, Fonterra, Landcorp Farming  and PGG Wrightson Ltd. The industry funding contribution is matched dollar for dollar by MBIE (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment) through the partnership funding scheme.

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PhytaGro’s role is to commercialise forage biotechnologies in the emerging crop segments that will receive the greatest benefit from technology adoption. In particular, PhytaGro focuses on crops with a high biomass yield such as forage grasses, legumes, and energy crops such as switchgrass, miscanthus and jatropha. Through increasing productivity and energy value, PhytaGro is able to make a substantial impact in addressing the ever widening biomass deficit the world faces.

PhytaGro is a joint venture between AgResearch and Finistere Ventures, a leading San Diego based life sciences venture capital firm making early stage investments that focus on “Food, Energy and Health”. It is a prime example of leveraging knowledge gained for one purpose to develop new applications and markets elsewhere.

For more contact AgResearch Technology Transfer Manager Mark Treloar


Velvet Antler Research New Zealand Ltd (VARNZ)

VARNZ is a joint venture between the Game Industry Board and AgResearch. It was established in 1994 with the twin objectives of undertaking research on deer velvet and co-products and controlling and managing the outputs of such work for the benefit of the New Zealand deer industry.

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