Our Scheme

Innovation, strength, organisational efficiencies, and a commitment to ensuring environmentally and economically sustainable water is available for future generations. These are the cornerstones on which MHV Water Ltd (MHV) was shaped.

Our scheme began in 1947 and by investing in science and technology, we are continuing the innovation and foresight of our predecessors. MHV Water delivers water for the purpose of irrigation and manages the environmental compliance for over 58 000 hectares of farmland in Mid-Canterbury between the Ashburton and Rangitata rivers. The water is used for growing grass for animals, grains, crops, specialty seeds, and much more. MHV Water is a farmer co-operative whereby the farmers collectively own the infrastructure and MHV Water staff are tasked with managing the infrastructure which delivers water across the district. 

The merging of Mayfield Hinds Irrigation Ltd and Valetta Irrigation Ltd on 1 June 2017 has created a united and stronger voice locally and regionally, promoting and progressing water and environmental issues in the Hinds Plains catchment area.

Rangitata Diversion Race Management (RDRML), a company of which we are a Shareholder, holds the consent and manages the water takes for both the Rangitata and Ashburton Rivers. A Water Conservation Order determines the volume of water that can be extracted from the Rangitata and Ashburton Rivers which feeds the RDR, and the minimum flow conditions which initiate restrictions. Water from the RDR is delivered to MHV shareholders via around 320km of open race and approximately 100km of piped infrastructure. 

The wider MHV landscape is peppered with storage ponds, these are filled during times of low irrigation water demand and, provide farmers and growers with increased reliability of water, should restrictions be imposed.

The irrigation season is from the 10th of September until the 9th of May each year. During winter, and in summer when not all the irrigation take is being utilised on the farm, the water is used for hydrogeneration.

Collective environmental management is important and not new to our farmers. They decided that we would achieve the best outcomes if we worked together, and we have been evolving our Farm Environmental Planning for over seven years. As an environmentally responsible organisation, we are continually looking at how we can improve our infrastructure and support our shareholders to meet and exceed Good Management Practices. Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) has proven positive results to date in increasing groundwater levels and decreasing nitrate levels, and we are proud to support this initiative in our scheme area.

MHV water works closely with mana whenua and is continually looking at how we can incorporate mātauranga Māori in our practices and farmers.

Learn more about Irrigation Protocols and Guidelines

Learn more about Share Registry and Company Documents




MHV Water Ltd
326 Burnett St
Ashburton 7700

Email: info@mhvwater.nz
Phone: +64 3 307 8389