Ovation lamb comes from four unique regions of New Zealand. Each area is made up of different soil structures, climate, sunlight and grass types resulting in subtle yet different flavour profiles. Our lamb is produced to suit multiple cuisine options. Whatever way you prepare it, the tenderness and natural 100% grass-fed flavour will be uncompromised.

The western upland region of the North Island is wild and unspoiled farming and conservation land. Rugged and sparsely settled, this is New Zealand’s rural heartland. A staunch Maori stronghold until the 1880s, farmers settled in the King Country in the 1890s. Economy, soil and stock health struggles slowed the industry over the years but nothing kept the region down for long. Home to rugby, sheep shearing and farming, the King Country is rural royalty.

  • Steep rolling hill country and valleys. Sparsely settled with no large cities or towns.
  • Contains the Tongariro National park made up of Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro mountains.

Limestone karst landscape with sinkholes and underground caves including the world-renowned Waitomo Glowworm Caves.

Moderate temperatures. High rainfall.

In the 1880s land in the area was surveyed for the main trunk railway line, opening the region up to European settlement.

Real, down to earth farming country.

This is rugged, untouched land of extreme beauty, remote charm and fresh flavours. The city of Gisborne is the first city to see the sun every new day and that sun shines in abundance throughout the year. A striking coastline is lined with pristine beaches and rocky outcrops. Inland, native bush creeps up to cover rolling hills and mountain ranges. Sunshine, sea air and water combine with fertile soils to grow some of the best produce in the land.

Rough rolling hill country and forests, with long coastline of beaches and coves.

Mixture of fertile clay loam and some alluvial soils.

Long, hot summers, high sunshine hours and cool afternoon sea breezes.

  • Captain James Cook named the place he first landed Poverty Bay, but ironically, the East Coast is one of the most fertile and abundant regions in New Zealand.
  • Renowned for vineyards, citrus orchards and stone fruit.

Slow paced, relaxing life.

Home to New Zealand’s pastoral pioneers, the Central Plains region is perhaps the birthplace of Kiwi lamb. In the early 1840s, 1,600 sheep were shipped from Australia to Wellington and hundreds of these were taken to the Wairarapa. The southwest area of the North Island is rich farm country with very fertile land. Warm summers and mild winters make it a prosperous agricultural district. Life here is low-key and charming.

Rich farm country of low-lying land with two key rivers: the Manawatu and Rangitikei.

Fertile and varied soils.

Warm summers, mild winters.

Numerous wind farms producing renewable energy.

Rural charm, easy living. Home to outdoor activities and adventure tourism.

Hawke’s Bay life and income has long been based on the land. Sheep, beef and dairy farms, vineyards, orchards and gardens are central to this region’s economy. The area is a collection of rivers, valleys, plains and hills with the imposing Ruahine and Kaweka ranges bordering the west. It is a region of contrasts – mountains and plains, floods and droughts, frosts and heat. These extremes contribute to the intense flavours in Hawke’s Bay’s world-renowned wines, cuisine and produce.

A collection of rivers, valleys, plains and hills.

Range of soils: clay loam, limestone, sand, free-draining gravels and red metal.

A Mediterranean climate of long hot summers, mild winters and lower rainfall.

Hawke’s Bay’s first flock of sheep (3,000 Merinos) arrived in 1849.

A thriving and enticing area known for its wine and food, produce markets and outdoor living.

king country

east cape

central plains

hawke’s bay


  • We provide a market-linked supply programme with clearly defined carcass specifications that reflect our customers’ needs.
  • We aim to provide competitive schedule pricing, and our schedule allows you to optimise returns through supply performance.
  • Our same day processing minimises animal stress and maximises yield, increasing your farm gate returns.
  • You are rewarded for supplying quality assured lambs.
  • We pay our suppliers a premium for supplying on time and to specification.
  • Both lamb and mutton can be booked and confirmed online through The Notebook.

Security of Payment

Ovation New Zealand Limited is managed in a prudent manner.

  • Working Capital funding is utilised during the season to primarily finance stocks and debtors. When this financing facility is utilised, stringent banking covenants including specific balance sheet ratios must be met.
  • All livestock is paid for within 14 days of slaughter and these covenants in turn provide a safeguard to suppliers with regard to all livestock payments.


We recognise and strive to reward excellence and loyalty.

Supplier of the Year prizes are awarded separately at both our Feilding and Gisborne plants with all Producer Group commitments (over 250 lambs) being eligible to win.

  • Each season at each plant we celebrate our ‘Supplier of the Year’. All lambs booked and supplied into the Ovation Lamb Producer Group will be eligible for this prestigious prize. The package includes an overseas market trip for two to meet with key Ovation customers – a great way to experience first-hand where your lamb ends up in the global marketplace.

A Quality Assurance Premium is payable on all lambs supplied under the Ovation Quality Assurance Programme.

  • With food safety, animal welfare, product integrity and traceability becoming an ever increasing and essential component in remaining economically competitive, we invite and urge all suppliers to join this programme.

Producer Group Specification Premiums are payable for stock supplied within the premium weight range of 16.0 to 25.9 kg carcase weight.

Monthly and Annual Supply Commitment Premiums are payable for lambs supplied in the appropriate period in accordance with confirmed bookings.

A Wool Payment is payable during spring and summer but capped at 0.70mm in length thus minimising product contamination and delivering improved shelf life.

Refer Stock Presentation Standards.

Stock Presentation Premiums are payable on all lambs that meet our Grade 1 or Grade 2 presentation standard. These standards are focused and directly related to the cleanliness of stock and our ability to minimise bacterial loadings thus providing an extended product shelf life on chilled product.

  • Research and laboratory results demonstrate that lambs presented at slaughter with short wool and/or with a full belly crutch and with front socks shorn have significantly lower microbiological levels post-slaughter.



  • Wool length less than 55mm.
  • Free of any dags.
  • Free of pen stain.


  • Wool length 56 – 80mm, and/or with a full belly crutch and with front socks shorn.
  • Free of any dags.
  • Minor pen stain may be present.


  • Wool length greater than 80mm.
  • Short wool with excessive pen stain. (ie: lambs not emptied out.)
  • Free of any dags.


  • Major dirt/dags present.
  • Note: Lambs meeting this grade may be returned to supplier at the supplier’s cost.

Pelt Quality

In the unlikely instance that lambs are sent for processing with pelts that are unable to be processed through the fellmongery (for example because of excessive burr or seed contamination) Ovation reserves the right to withhold the pelt and/or wool payment. This action will not be undertaken without first discussing the issue with the supplier.

Tail Length

To comply with the animal welfare requirements of some of our customers, suppliers are requested that when docking lambs, sufficient tail length is retained to cover the vulva for female lambs and the anus for male lambs.

Lamb Supply Programme

Our annual Lamb Supply Programme is available on request from our Livestock Managers or plants.


ASD (Animal Status Declaration) Forms

An ASD is a legal and essential document that provides animal traceability and must accompany all livestock movements in New Zealand. The ASD is vital:

  • To transfer key animal welfare information about the stock.
  • For guiding ante-mortem and post-mortem examination at the processing premises.
  • Integral for determining export eligibility.
  • Underpins the Government’s ability to sign export certification.

A correctly completed ASD form must accompany all livestock being sent for slaughter. An example of a correctly completed form is included inside the front cover of our ASD booklets.

In addition, suppliers to the Ovation Lamb Producer Group need to ensure that they complete and send the yellow backing card that is included in the company ASD booklet. This card includes questions relating to the quality assurance status of the lambs being sent for slaughter.

  • Replacement ASD books are available through your agent or from the slaughter plants.

Quality Assurance Standards

Food safety, animal welfare, product integrity and traceability remain our number one business priority. All Ovation products adhere strictly to certified international food safety standards, which enable us to deliver a surprisingly long product shelf life when stored at recommended temperatures.

Ovation On-Farm Quality Assurance Programme.

The worldwide demand for greater food safety and quality assurances drives our Ovation On-Farm Quality Assurance Programme. This programme precedes and complements the programmes and auditing process that are in place throughout our processing facilities.

The independent auditing company AsureQuality carries out the on-farm auditing of the programme. A self-audit form is available for Ovation farmers to identify areas they may need to focus on prior to audits being undertaken.

For more details on AsureQuality view their website. asurequality.co.nz.

Ovation’s Farm Assurance Programme is accredited to JAS-ANZ ISO/IEC 17065 Standard and now adopts the New Zealand Farm Assurance Programme (NZFAP) as its base: https://www.nzfap.com/

Enquiries about the Ovation scheme should be made to Hylton Bayliss at Hylton.Bayliss@ovation.co.nz