Agribusiness & Rural Law
Working with you for more than 150 years
Wynn Williams has partnered with the farming community for more than 150 years. While the face of farming has changed considerably, our commitment to the sector is stronger than ever.

Our specialist rural team provides legal services to private family farms, public companies, offshore clients, and other rural investment entities.  We provide comprehensive expertise to the agribusiness and corporate farming sector.

We work with clients involved in the full range of rural-based activities – from dairy farming to marine farming, cropping to horticulture, and irrigation companies to agricultural engineering businesses.

Several of these projects have been of a very substantial size, involving both commercial and political sensitivities.

We regularly advise on:
  • establishing joint venture and partnership structures
  • shareholders’ agreements & related constitution documents
  • governance and management structures
  • funding & security arrangements between shareholders and external lenders
  • employment and health & safety law
  • resource management and environmental issues
  • insurance
  • dispute resolution
In addition to the commercial aspects of farming we also advise our rural clients with their personal legal needs such as:
  • wills, trusts and estate administration
  • property sale and purchase
  • family farm ownership and succession planning
We can assist with the following:


Recent Projects

  • Working on a number of overseas investment office applications for the acquisition of sensitive land for kiwifruit orchards, apple orchards and dairy farms, along with exemption applications and variations to existing consents.
  • Acting on the acquisition of a number of dairy farms and orchards for an overseas investment fund.
  • Joint ventures in the agribusiness, mining and construction sectors.
  • Negotiating and drafting a complex manufacture and supply agreement for the provision of a continuous high quality flow of wool to a major garment manufacturer involving multiple processors located in several countries. Key elements included funding arrangements, retention of ownership and control of goods through the supply chain, and remedies for failures in supply and service.
  • Restructuring of commercial arrangements necessitated by the receivership of one of New Zealand largest corporate dairy farming operations.
  • The sale process of approximately $600 million of agribusiness assets.
  • Dissolution of a large farming partnership into separate trading entities.



Moving with the times

It always seems to be a rough road for the agri-sector. Recent years have seen it faced with drought, low milk prices and a change in government which has had severe knock on implications not only for overseas investors, but also for famers themselves. The banks are tightening their LVR requirements and some are looking to divest of certain agri-sectors all together.

Keep reading...


What employers need to know from today - key changes

There have been multiple changes to New Zealand's employment law framework. The biggest of these, changes to the Employment Relations Act, take effect from today. But there are some other changes too which employers will benefit from being aware of.

Keep reading...


Planning your Farm's Future

Make good plans for the future of farms and agri-businesses across different farming sectors. The differences in cost, asset structure and return across sectors needs to be recognised in this process.

Keep reading...


Crafar Decisions Result in Little Real Change

In the recent Court of Appeal decision, rejecting an attempt to stop the sale of the 'Crafar' farms to Shanghai Pengxin, it was held that the Ministers responsible for granting consent for overseas investments have considerable flexibility in determining what business experience and acumen is relevant to any particular investment.

Keep reading...


Considering Leasing the Farm?

As farmland becomes more expensive and rental returns from leasing increase, farm leasing is becoming more attractive and prevalent.

Keep reading...

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Wynn Williams Christchurch
Level 5, Wynn Williams House, 47 Hereford Street, Christchurch 8013, New Zealand.
PO Box 4341, DX WX11179, Christchurch 8140.
+64 3 379 7622
+64 3 379 2467
Wynn Williams Auckland
Level 25, Vero Centre, 48 Shortland Street, Auckland 1010, New Zealand.
PO Box 2401, Shortland Street, Auckland 1140.
+64 9 300 2600
+64 9 300 2609

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