About Us

Driving prosperity by transforming agriculture

Crown Research Institutes (CRIs) work on science based research relevant to New Zealand’s needs. Each CRI works with its lead sector, with each other and with industry partners to develop solutions and practical ideas.

AgResearch partners with the pastoral sector with the aim of delivering the innovation needed to create value for New Zealand.

We play a key role in delivering new knowledge and technologies which underpin New Zealand’s pastoral, agri-food and agri-technology value chains.

AgResearch’s Maori whakatauki (proverb) – āta mātai, mātai whetū –  was developed with AgResearch people and Tainui kaumatua, Waikato University senior lecturer and well-respected reo Maori expert Tom Roa.

Over a series of workshops the essence of AgResearch was defined, including an essential message for Māori summarised as:

Being in pursuit of far horizons, while firmly grounded. Innovative, inspirational, respectful, healthy of body, inspired of spirit in the spreading of knowledge in the fields of proper foods, sustainable land practices, of healthy lifestyles for this world today, to tomorrow’s world and for worlds to come.”

Āta mātai, mātai whetū can be translated as ‘being grounded, researching deliberately while shooting for the stars’.

Farm Systems and Environmentsheep

Our Leaders

Meet the bright minds who are leading the way within AgResearch.

Our Executive Team:
Our Executive Team works collectively to develop and execute organisational strategy. The team comprises of experienced professionals from many disciplines including Science, Research, Finance, Marketing, Corporate Business, Health & Safety, People & Culture and Law.  They are accountable for leading Our Values, for developing and engaging their teams and for encouraging innovation and bright ideas.

Find out more

Animal Science

Animal Science

The Animal Science group encompasses a wide range of disciplines, with the purpose of improving the nutrition, health, quality traits and reproductive performance of animals to achieve efficient and sustainable animal production and delivery of high quality animal products.

Teams within this group:

  • Animal Nutrition & Physiology
  • Animal Health
  • Rumen Microbiology
  • Animal Genomics
  • GenomNZ
  • Animal Reproduction
  • Animal Welfare

Food & Bio-based Products

The role of the Foods & Bio-based Products group is to create the knowledge and tools to develop high value foods, ingredients and products from pastoral-based agriculture.

Teams within this group:

  • Dairy Foods
  • Food Assurance & Meat Quality
  • Food Nutrition & Health
  • Proteins & Biomaterials
  • Textiles

Forage Science

Forage Science

We develop new tools and technologies to improve on-farm productivity, enhance the performance of New Zealand’s pastoral, agricultural and biotechnology industries and build on New Zealand’s position of being at the forefront of these sectors. The supporting research we carry out will lead to new commercial and knowledge opportunities in the future.

Teams within this group:

  • Forage Genetics
  • Plant Biotechnology
  • Plant-Fungal Interactions
  • Soil Biology
  • Plant Functional Biology
  • Biocontrol & Biosecurity

Farm Systems and Environment

The Farm Systems & Environment Group is concerned with improving production systems through innovative research to create more profitable and sustainable farms and agribusiness. Collectively, our research provides the capacity to understand complex interconnected agricultural issues of interest to both the industry and the public.

Teams within this group:

  • Farm Systems
  • Environmental Research
  • Environmental Sciences
  • Modelling
  • People & Agriculture

Farm Systems and Environment


Partnerships and Programmes

The Partnerships and Programmes group provides the interface between AgResearch and the pastoral, agri-food and agri-tech sectors. The group has responsibility for building strong enduring relationships between our stakeholders and science teams and provides the commercial support required to develop the projects that deliver research-based solutions for our sector. Through these projects we create value for our stakeholders and New Zealand and revenue and profit for AgResearch that can be invested to support the sector.


AgResearch currently operates 9 farms throughout New Zealand (8 sheep and beef, 1 dairy and 1 sheep and deer) providing the company with the ability to undertake scientific work such as reproduction, parasitology, genomics, plant breeding, animal behaviour, immunology and disease management.

The farms have 40 employees and are spread from the Waikato to Southland, with land varying from intensive flats to steep hill.