Future Farmers Network (FFN) directors and staff are constantly out and about in the agriculture industry attending industry events and training, engaging with FFN Industry partners and networking with FFN members. This week, FFN director Dan Korff reflects on the future of the stud:
I'VE been riding along behind our 2013 drop of stud ewe weaners, thinking about the future direction of the stud - leading me to think about the people of the future of the stud - and, consequently, our industry.
These young sheep have already had their blood tests, weights twice and all their breeding recorded. There are all types in the mob - the big, the average and the tail. All of them need care to perform.
These are our next generation - the platform on which we will spring forward from with gusto not yet seen before in our industry.
My responsibility here is huge. I need to make sure they have the highest quality nutrition (information), it's me who will class them into respective groups (finding their niche/passion and support them all the way) and it is me who will be responsible for finding their perfect position in our stud and ensuring they are managed all their lives to be the best they can be (finding opportunities; encouraging ; and supporting constant development).
Now, the bracketed comments relate to our people - our current and future generations from which our industries will grow and prosper.
I've spotted my little mate at the tail of the mob - the smallest ewe here, unsure of why she is, but can I grab her? No. She has more grit and determination than the rest that she will get there, and she will - she may need a short ride along the way, but she'll get there. Then her sister is up the front - the biggest ewe here, she may be strong and believe me she'll be productive, but will probably give in should I put pressure on her and sit down. She needs a different support - that she can do it and she has the ability to go further. They all need support and encouragement in some form.
Can you see similarities with our youth?
WE are responsible for promoting our industry - encouraging our people into it, and then supporting them in every way possible to help them achieve their goals - and for us all to achieve our goals as an industry.
I hope the sheep analogies haven't been too much!