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New Zealand Diploma in ​Agribusiness Management (Level 5)


  • Start dates: Ongoing​
  • Fee Guideline: $4,239* – for a breakdown of the 2017/2018 course and unit standard fees please see here.​
  • Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Whakatane, Rotorua, Pukekohe, Stratford, (online​​​, face-to-face, block course and virtual classroom options are available for some modules)

The New Zealand Diploma in Agribusiness Management is designed for managers and owners in agricultural businesses. That also includes those who have relevant industry experience and are ready to advance into a management capacity. It has been designed to suit people who are working, with block courses and online learning scheduled around work, and delivered in rural locations. ​​​

When you undertake the Diploma you will:​

  • Be able to achieve your business and career goals faster 
  • Gain the confidence to present your accounts and plans to your bank, accountant and other rural professionals in the best way possible 
  • Make decisions based on sound judgement 
  • Take control of your business 
  • Work with your own agribusiness’ statistics 
  • Gain ideas and inspiration from your colleagues 
  • Have a highly respected, industry-recognised qualification 
  • Be able to directly apply what you’ve learnt to your own agribusiness

What you’ll learn​​​

To complete the New Zealand Diploma in Agribusiness Management (level 5) you will study five courses, with the final course being a report on your property. Each course is made up of unit standards. If you have completed any of the unit standards in previous study you can have them cross credited. ​


1. Agribusiness Planning and Management

In this module you will learn how to:

  • Prepare a business plan and monitor your business’ performance against objectives 
  • Accurately evaluate investment options and return on investment 
  • Make decisions about an ownership structure that will future-proof your business 
  • Manage risks such as volatility in market prices and unplanned weather events 
  • Understand the concepts of asset management, transfer and succession 
  • Understand the effects of market forces on your business and your neighbors

Unit standards:

  • 21385 - Ownership, tenure, and succession planning
  • 21386 - Market forces
  • 16655 - Manage agribusiness capital
  • 21388 - Business Planning
  • 16661 - Management of risk

This course is offered in the following locations:

Semester 1, February – July 2017: Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Whakatane, Stratford​​

Semester 2, September – December 2017: Online 


​2. Financial Planning and Management 

In this programme you'll learn how to: 

  • Develop annual cash flow forecasts
  • Prepare budgets for your bank manager
  • Plan a calendar with financial requirements by season
  • Prepare a finance proposal to grow (extend or diversity) your agribusiness
  • Identify taxation and compliance 

Unit Standards:

  • 21390 – Financial plans 
  • 16653 – Taxation requirements 
  • 21394 – Performance and investment opportunities 
  • 11853 – Prepare a case for obtaining finance 

This course is offered in the following locations: 

Semester 1, February - July 2017: Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Rotorua, Pukekohe, Stratford 

Semester 2, September – December 2017: Online 


3. Resource Planning and Management  

The aim of this course is to: 

  • Enhance the sustainability of physical resources 
  • Gain skills to develop a detailed action plan to meet specified objectives 
  • Analyse results and plan for contingencies 
  • Manage natural and physical resources 

Unit Standards: 

  • 21387 - Physical resources
  • 27100 - Develop a sustainable land and management plan 

This course is offered in the following locations: 

Semester 1, February – July 2017: Online 

Semester 2, September – December 2017: Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Whakatane, Rotorua, Pukekohe, Stratford

4. Human Resource Planning and Management

The aim of this course is to: 

  • Understand your employment obligations, including termination rights and responsibilities 
  • Understand recruitment principles and selecting the right people 
  • Apply staff management techniques to improve staff retention 
  • Be able to build a highly productive farm team 

Unit standards:

  • 21395 - Employment requirement and procedures 
  • 21396 - Recruitment, selection and induction of staff 
  • 23543 - Health and safety planning 
  • 21397 - Work allocation, performance and training 

This course is offered in the following locations: 

Semester 1, February – July 2017: Online, Block Course (location to be advised).

​Semester 2, September – December 2017: Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Whakatane, Stratford, Block Course (location to be advised).


5. Property Report

The property report involves creating a detailed report on an agribusiness of your tutor's choosing that documents every aspect of the business – from an overview of the current operation to analysis of opportunities and threats. 

Semester 1, February – July 2017: Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Rotorua, Stratford



Course locations and dates


Locations and dates 2017/2018

What's Involved

An assessor will visit you on farm and, through a professional conversation, assess your skills and knowledge. You'll be asked to produce naturally occurring evidence, like current budgets, business plans or lending proposals – these are the documents you use in your everyday management of the farm.

Entry Criteria

Candidates are required to have gained: 

i) 48 credits at NCEA Level 2 including 12 credits in English or Māori; or

ii) A relevant qualification at NZQF Level 3 or above; or 

iii) Equivalent; and 

iv) Must be in a position to access financial and production performance information about a specific agribusiness.

Application Process

New students​ 

If you are new to this programme, you will need to complete two forms: 

1. The student application form. You can complete this form online here​.

2. A module selection form. Primary ITO can assist with this form, which determines which courses you will do, when, and where. 

Returning students ​​​​

If you have been studying towards the New Zealand Diploma in Agribusiness Management, or a National Certificate in Agribusiness Management, you can continue to finish these qualifications, or transfer your credits to the New Zealand Diploma in Agribusiness Management. You will need to complete:

1. A returning student form, which you can do online here.

2. The module selection form​.

A training advisor at the Primary ITO will help you through the module selection process and any transfer of credits. You can contact them on:

0800 20 80 20 

PO Box 10-383 The Terrace Wellington 6143

Working in partnership

A number of key industry organisations are working in partnership to help you keep your skills relevant, take your career to the next level, and achieve your business goals. These organisations include Primary ITO, DairyNZ, Dairy Training Ltd and Wintec.

Within the partnership, Agribusiness students are enrolled and managed by Wintec, the Primary ITO is responsible for marketing, recruitment and on-farm support, and Dairy Training Limited, as a specialised provider of dairy farm training, is contracted to Wintec to deliver the diploma training.

Graduate Story

“I think it’s vital to upskill particularly the financial papers for doing cashflows and budgets. That way you can keep your bank and stakeholders up to date with the impact of lower payouts, and put some plans in place to help get through the tough times. It helps to have some control over your situation rather than a wait and see approach which may be too late!” Shona and Tony Pedersen, both Diploma Graduates, Raglan

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