Whanganui's Waters and Farr pipe manufacturing plant has been named the top plant in the Hynds group.

The Hinau St operation is the national base for Waters and Farr which also has plants in Auckland and Rangiora.

"The business wasn't in a great place but in the last year it has really turned around and that was recognised by us winning the Hynds Manufacturing Plant of the Year award," supply chain manager Rebecca Dixon said.

Factory manager Pieter Venter said the company had been on a "hectic journey" in the past 12 months.

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"The company wasn't in a positive position so we needed to create a vision for the company and get our people engaged in that," Mr Venter said.

"Things are going much better now and that's why we won the Hynds award which recognises where we were and where we are now. It wasn't due to individuals, it was a team effort."

Waters and Farr, established in 1954, is a wholesaler that makes polyethylene and polypropylene pipe. The business moved from Porirua to Whanganui in 2002, basing itself on the site of a former foundry. It has been part of the Hynds group of companies for the past five years.

"We sell to everyone from rural merchants through to civil merchants," Mrs Dixon said.

"We make everything from rural pipe that farmers put to their water troughs through to ducting, gas pipe and water pipe that goes into roads. We recently supplied all the gas pipe for the road out to Whanganui airport. We also supply the food industry, making the cores for plastic wrap.

"Whanganui is the biggest Waters and Farr site and we supply nationally from here. We do a lot of work through the TIL group (Hookers) and the local branch of Mainfreight.

"People may be worried about our impact on the environment but we have no waste - we recycle all our waste product back into our material."

The Whanganui factory has about 30 staff and the national business team is based in the Whanganui office. The factory runs three 24/5 shifts and is often on the lookout for staff, especially people who have experience in the plastics industry.