A nationwide event starts this month with the aim of broadening young New Zealanders' understanding of the primary sectors and to quash the perception that it's just about 'gumboots and physically hard work'.

The GrowingNZ Innovation Challenge Day is hoping to to create awareness of opportunities for young people in any one of New Zealand's innovative primary sectors.

Dozens of Year 10 and 11 secondary school students are set to compete in the fast-paced event that invites them to solve a series of challenges facing New Zealand's primary sectors.

The GrowingNZ Innovation Challenge Day requires students to use their research skills and practical knowledge of science, technology and business, to design and prototype an innovative and viable solution to a real-life situation being faced by one of New Zealand's largest export sectors.

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The day is part of GrowingNZ's programme that provides information, activities and resources to create awareness of opportunities for young people in any one of New Zealand's innovative primary sectors.

By 2025, the primary sectors will need 50,000 more people with a diverse range of skills including technology, business and science.

The 2017 event saw students address issues such as maintaining on-farm water supply, pasture measurement and biosecurity. This year's students will be introduced to new sector-relevant challenges, announced on the day.

The day-long event is one of seven being hosted around the country throughout the year with others being held in Tauranga, Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch, Invercargill and Dunedin.

The event is run by Young Enterprise, funded by DairyNZ and supported by GrowingNZ (the Primary Industry Capability Alliance - PICA). The first event takes place in Wellington on Tuesday 29th May.

To find out more about GrowingNZ Innovation Challenge Days around New Zealand, visit http://www.growingnz.org.nz/eventcalendar.php