Outside the wire of a South Otago prison, inmates work on a dairy farm in hope of a brighter future.
Otago Corrections Facility principal instructor and farm manager Tony Russell said Department of Corrections bought a dairy farm in Milburn and "plonked a prison in the middle of it".
The prison - on about 40ha of land, about 6km north of Milton, - opened in 2007.
About 135ha remained to operate the dairy farm and run about 350 kiwicross cows.
About 320 of those cows were milked once a day.
Inmates were picked up from the facility at 6.15am, to have cows in the milking shed by 7.30am and be returned to the facility by 3pm.
He had been managing the farm and teaching inmates since the facility opened.
An inmate had never attempted to escape when working on the farm.
"They could drive a tractor down the driveway and keep going but in 14 years, we've never had anyone look like doing that."
He felt safer working on the farm than he did walking in central Dunedin at midnight, he said.
The main purpose of the farm was to give inmates a chance to learn new skills so they had a better chance of being employed on release.
Inmates worked towards Primary ITO qualifications in agriculture skills.