In a country where there is twice as many cows as people, the slump in dairy product prices, coupled with the success of films like The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, has led to a huge increase in tourists to the country.
International tourists’ spend has increased by 20% for the last financial year, following a 17% increase for the previous year.
Income from the sale of dairy products is down by 22% over the same two years due to softening in demand for premium infant formula, together with the world oversupply, according to Statistics New Zealand.
Even though dairy prices have started to rise, it will take several years for many farmers to recover their losses.
Some farmers are adding to their income from the tourist boom by offering home stays or hunting trips.