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Covered... Author Ross Hyland enjoyed writing his first book.PHOTO: MARGARET PHILLIPS

A man involved in farming-related businesses and activities most of his life enjoyed travelling around New Zealand gathering material for his first book Our Land Our People – In Search of Farming Excellence

Waikato agribusinessman Ross Hyland penned the book, which contains 160 photos.

“One hundred and fifty-five of them are mine.”

The book covers 10 North Island properties and 14 in the South Island.

Mr Hyland has been in the South promoting his book, which was launched in Hamilton recently.

The highlight of his research trips was the people he met along the way, he said.

Mr Hyland, a Lincoln University graduate, worked in the South in the early 1970s.

He worked for the Morrisons at Waikaka Valley and then at a property at Riversdale, so his connection with the South is well cemented, and he still has friends in Southland.

He also played rugby for Waikaka.

Rosedale and Glenroy farms – featuring brothers Donald and Andrew Morrison, with one of their properties at Waikaka Valley – are covered in the book.

The chapter is entitled “The story of two farms and two brothers.”

Another chapter centres on Jericho Station, where new owners Ed Pinckney and former Gore woman Jaimee Pryde live.

Mr Hyland’s agricultural involvement included buying stock feed maker Seales in 1997 and developing it. Then in 2011, the business joined forces with Ballance Agri-Nutrients and South Island based Winslow Feeds to form a new business.

After selling his stake in the business, he became involved in the Meat Industry Excellence (MIE) group and co-authored a report on the long-term sustainability of the red meat industry and the impacts on farming.

He paid tribute to the dedication, ethics and integrity of the farming families he met and profiled in the book.

The book took a “couple” of years to write.

“It’s been a wonderful journey,” Mr Hyland said.

Since being launched, the book has sold 3000 copies.