Insightful focus on rural sector

30 Jan 2024

The New Zealand agricultural sector is not without its challenges but its future is vital for us all, according to Old Boy George Glubb (12204).

George owns Cinta Insights, an agency that focuses solely on rural and agricultural research.

“Our work can be varied. One day we might be running fieldwork to understand what seed companies farmers are likely to use, the next we might be seeking to understand more thoroughly how well rural New Zealand is insured.

“We generally take specific briefs from clients, look to understand their business, the opportunities and challenges that might exist and work with them to put together a programme of research and insights that will help answer their questions so that they can shape future marketing, and communications activity,” George explains.

Cinta has a circa 15,000-strong farmer community who participate in the online and offline research. Farmers are incentivised for their responses and Cinta makes charitable donations to organisations for each response and each new farmer who joins the research network. Not-for-profits include the NZ Young Farmers, Rural Support Trust, Will to Live, and Rural Women.

George believes there is a significant rural/urban divide across New Zealand, much of which is based on misconception and fairly vocal voices against the rural sector.

“Giving farmers a clear, and targeted outlet to provide their opinions can help to raise awareness of the amazing work the sector does and the hope is that, in some way, we are able to help bridge that gap between town and country.”

Cinta is also keen on continuing to raise awareness of the mental health challenges many people in the rural community face.

George is no stranger to insights and data research.

After leaving College in 2000, he worked for the then media intelligence agency Chong Newztel. In 2007, he headed to London where, after a season running a ski chalet in France, he joined Kantar Media as the Head of Business Development for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Six years on, he returned to NZ and joined global data and insights agency Dynata where he spent a decade as the Regional Director for Australia and New Zealand.

While George isn’t from a farm, he was brought up on a lifestyle property on the outskirts of Christchurch which propagated and ran a rhododendron nursery. He married the daughter of a farmer and has many friends, mostly from College, who are farmers.

“The challenges and opportunities of farming are regularly part of our conversations. I hear the challenges they face but they are optimistic about what lies ahead. With 40% of NZ’s exports coming from the agri sector, we need to ensure it remains to be strong, sustainable and ambitious,” George says.