Fonterra's thousands of farmer shareholders are being invited to meet and question candidates currently running for a seat at the dairy giant's top table.

Elections are being held this month for three positions available on Fonterra's board of directors.

A roadshow will be running throughout the country from November 10 to 15, giving farmers the chance to meet candidates before casting their votes.

Ian Brown, chairman of the Fonterra Shareholders' Council, said it was important that farmers were participating in their co-op.


"It is vital that shareholders take the responsibility to make an informed decision that benefits us now and the next generation of Fonterra farmers in years to come," Brown said.

To elect the best people, farmers should be gathering as much information as possible before casting their vote.

"Attending the roadshow will provide them with a greater understanding of each candidate's governance ability and experience."

The Fonterra board is made up of four independent directors and nine elected directors, and there are three positions going in this year's election.

There are usually two spots available each year but a third has been opened up by the departure of former chairman Sir Henry van der Heyden, who stepped down last December.

The elected members each serve for three years before choosing to retire or stand for re-election.

Two incumbent directors - Malcolm Bailey and Ian Farrelly - end their terms this year but both have chosen to stand again.

Another three new candidates - Donna Smit, Michael Spaans and Eric Ray - are also vying for a spot on the board.


Farmers can vote by internet, fax or post and the polls close at 10.30am on Monday, November 25, with the results announced later that day.

Successful candidates take office following the Fonterra annual meeting two days later.

Information about roadshow venues, dates and times can be found on the Fonterra Elections and Annual Meeting page on Fencepost.