VoiceOver users please use the tab key when navigating expanded menus

Young Farmer finalist grabs Ashburton banking role 'with both hands'

Jake Jarman knows a thing or two about farming – he’s a finalist in this year’s Young Farmer Contest - and he’s now finding Mid-Canterbury to be fertile ground for growing his experience in a closely-related field: banking.


The 23-year-old took out this year’s Taranaki Manawatu Regional Final in January, blitzing the competition in every field - in his first year of competing.


Just days later, he was "packing my life's possessions into my car and driving down to Ashburton” to start a new role with ANZ as a Relationship Associate – to see the other side of farming.


“I’ve always had an interest in finance and how it plays out in the agricultural sector,” he said.


“That was one of the reasons I decided to go to Lincoln to study a Bachelor of Agri-Commerce.”


He went on to also complete a Masters in Agricultural Science (Dairy Systems) at Massey, and when the time came for the next step, something about banking appealed.


“I wanted to get into the banking industry to learn more about how that side of the relationship works – so when the ANZ job came up, I grabbed it with both hands.”


Ashburton seemed like the perfect place to base himself, he said, due to a diversity of agricultural businesses not available in other parts of the country.


“The scale of the industry here is much larger than I had growing up in Taranaki - large farms with economies of scale, and a large inter-linked agricultural industry - primary producers, allied industries, associated industries, food processing – the works,” he said.



“Ashburton is a critical town for the surrounding agricultural industries, and there are so many businesses supporting those farms – you’ve got machinery dealers, seed merchants, livestock companies, banks, accountants, lawyers – a whole developed industry.”


- Jake Jarman, ANZ Relationship Associate, Ashburton




Growing up on the family dairy farm in Inglewood also gave him a head start understanding of the needs of rural customers.


"I've sort of been in that space my whole life, and it's created quite a good foundation to be able to understand their needs and where they're coming from quite quickly," he says.


ANZ's large market share of agricultural customers was also a selling point for the new job, Jake said, and he was attracted to idea of fostering those long-standing relationships.


"I really enjoy the idea of being the conduit to allow people to achieve their goals in their farming businesses - it's a partnership, and there's quite a lot of history to that partnership," Jake said.


"A lot of these farms have been working with the bank for 30, 40, 50 years – we have clients that have banked with us for multiple generations, and that only happens if you maintain that relationship.


“It requires a high degree of trust between both parties – so our jobs as bankers is to continually work on that and make sure the trust endures.”


As a Relationship Associate, his job now involves assisting Relationship Managers in their dealings with those customers, and Jake says he's already been given plenty of opportunities go out on farm visits.


"It's good to put some faces to some names - and just sort of get a feel for how you serve those customers," he said.


“The local farmers are great - I’ve met a wide range of farming clients so far, from ambitious young couples looking to grow and expand, to older, more settled farmers wanting to consolidate while encouraging the next generation through.


“It’s pretty clear they’re proud of their local area and keen to protect it into the future, and Ashburton locals have also been really friendly at all the events I’ve been to - you always get a smile on the street!”


Issues like climate change and environmental regulations also make it an interesting and challenging time to be in the industry.


"The regulations are continually evolving and impacting on how farmers operate, you've got a changing global market, the whole climate change issue - so obviously agriculture has a part to play in that," Jake said.


"I think we're in a pretty cool space, and the next ten years are going to see some pretty awesome change and opportunities in the agriculture industry."


Meanwhile, Southern RFC have also gained a new blindside flanker/lock for their Hinds games – but he hasn’t quite converted to a Crusaders supporter just yet.


“Never! Hurricanes supporter through and through.”


Jake's now looking forward to stepping up at the 2021 FMG Young Farmers Contest Grand Final in Christchurch, which begins on July 1.


Making the Most of It - One Grad's Story

Immigrating from Papua New Guinea to New Zealand, Scott Sause knew he wanted to make most the opportunities, including the ANZ Graduate Programme.

Agri Focus - Reaping the Rewards

How economies perform in 2021 is highly dependent on the course the pandemic takes, how quickly vaccines can be rolled out, and how well they work.

Towards Healthy Waterways – Playing our Part

Volunteers have planted more than 25,000 trees along New Zealand waterways this year as part of Sustainable Coastlines and ANZ’s Love Your Water Tour.