An Independent Farm Director / Trustee

With a lifetime of involvement in many aspects of agriculture, Don would make an ideal Director or Trustee of your farming business.

His pragmatic, no-nonsense approach tells how it really should be.

Appointing Don as a Director/Trustee gives him the standing to bring about the changes that will move the business forward.

His focus on governance and best practice will take a lot of the load off people in the farming business.

In recent years Don is focussing increasingly on farm mediation. The stresses imposed by modern agricultural technology have changed the scene for farm businesses and farm families.

He is also well-versed in environmental matters and can liaise as needed with Regional Councils for a satisfactory outcome.

Farm Consulting Services

Consulting on all aspects of rural business, farm management, farm leasing, farm lease documentation, financial planning, farm succession planning, land management, investment and trusts, contract negotiation.

With Fraser Farm Finance's vast store of practical, hands-on experience with farming and rural business, we provide much more than just farm consulting and financial services to the rural business community.

Percentage leasing

Don pioneered this type of tenure in which the tenant gets 78% of the dairy cheque to run the business. The owner gets the remaining 22%, with no costs at all. This incentives the tenant and sets the owner free to pursue other interests. It is timeless and very successful, and is being implemented by many professionals and farmers.

Don can complete the Federated Farmers formal lease documents for you, with additional clauses where necessary.

For more information read Don's articles here and here.

Independent Advice and Support

We are a truly independent company, being a 100% New Zealand family owned business. Whilst we do draw on the resources of a wide range of financial institutions and professionals for farm consulting, we are not employed by them. We are not beholden to any organisation and have no hidden agendas or vested interests.

We also believe it's important to be individually supportive of all our clients. Farming and business can be lonely and difficult sometimes, particularly when the going gets tough. We are on your side, and we'll give you the support as and when it is needed.

Strategic Planning

Planning is a most important part of any business, particularly farming, although it can sometimes be difficult to know exactly where you want to go or how to get there. We review your strengths and weaknesses, consider your goals and what opportunities there may be to grow your business. We then design a plan that will enable you to make progress towards your goals and achieve your ambitions. This may include seeking out other opportunities for investment, refinancing, or considering other changes and improvements to your business

Farm Succession Planning

Farm Succession Planning helps to make retirement comfortable. To ensure that the farm can stay in the family and be seamlessly handed on, there needs to be sufficient cash available to support two families. No matter what the capital value of the whole operation is, there has to be enough money left over at the end of the day to allow the younger owners of the farm to support mom and pop as well as themselves.

Succession is not impossible but, to make sure that it works out in the longer term, professional advice should be sought from specialists. Succession planning is a major part of our farm consulting work.


Have a problem that needs solving? We don't look for trouble but we are good at finding solutions. Helping rural businesspeople with difficult issues and sticky situations is a major part of our day-to-day work. If you've got something that needs sorting out and you're not sure what to do next, or need somebody to sound out your ideas to ensure you won't get into further difficulties, we can help. We do it all the time, discreetly and in strictest confidence.

If we don't know the answer, we are sure to know someone who does.

Lost Your Way?

We are increasingly being asked to consult with farmers who feel they have lost their way. It's very easy to lose sight of the big picture when working a flat-out day just to keep everything together. We can help you stand back from the daily pressures, work through the issues with you, and put you back on track. We'll also help you get support from other professionals and advisors to ensure that every aspect of your business, family and personal life is focused towards your wider goals and what you wish to achieve in the longer term.

Contract negotiation

On your behalf we will work to sort out difficult-to-negotiate contracts. We will work to resolve disputes and provide straight-up professional negotiation. Having an independent party involved in difficult negotiations can be the key to achieving a good result. This is particularly true in family situations, of which we also have considerable experience.

Rental Assessment & Lease Agreements

We do more than just farm consulting. Don's extensive experience in property valuation means that he can provide a comprehensive service including advice, assessment and rental negotiation. Don takes a fresh look at how best to set out the lease agreement before you take it to your lawyer. Don is the father of the "income-related rental" scheme for dairy farms, which has now become widely adopted in the industry.

Conflict Resolution

Don is very experienced in managing situations of family breakups. In a non-conflict environment he can successfully get agreement between the parties on what is fair and reasonable, and come to an amicable settlement. Don works from a neutral standpoint to avoid ill-feeling between the parties and to make expensive litigation unnecessary.


With the increasing complexity of farming, understanding of governance is becoming essential. Don is able to come into your business and advise on best practice and governance issues.

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