SIX young rural champions are set to help educate a new generation about agriculture.
Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) and Art4Agriculture today announced Geoff Birchnell, Prue Capp, Anika Molesworth, Casey Dahl, Josh Gilbert and Tim Eyes as their 2014 Young Farming Champions
The six will now undertake training to prepare them to act as advocates for the industry.
The program is designed to provide them with the skills and confidence to educate others about the opportunities in agriculture, starting as representatives for the Art4Agriculture program and Archibull Prize in schools across the eastern states.
MLA community engagement manager Pip McConachie said the 2014 Young Farming Champions showed that interest in agriculture was still alive and well among the younger generation.
“It’s great to see such enthusiasm from the next generation to not only work in agriculture, but to promote it through schools and the wider community,” she said.
Geoff has a Bachelor of Commerce and works as a chartered accountant in Brisbane however has strong connections to the bush through his family’s Hereford cattle stud. Geoff’s mission as a Young Farming Champion is to ensure he continues to grow, learn and share his knowledge and skills.
Prue grew up on her family’s beef property in the Hunter Valley and is a six generation grazier. Currently based in Wagga Wagga, she is an equine dentist, a veterinary science student, an Australian Stock Horse judge and the 2013 Trans-Tasman National Rural Ambassador.
Based in Griffith, NSW, Anika is an agribusiness banker whose love of agriculture stems from her family’s sheep property in far west NSW. She believes the industry needs ambitious and innovative people who see past the status quo to embrace sustainable farming now and into the future.
Casey is completing honours research at the University of Queensland on the preservation of bovine semen. Based at Gatton, Casey believes working together is the most effective way to share how wonderful agriculture is, to showcase how beautiful the land is and to demonstrate how passionate we are about it.
An advocate from a different angle, Josh has a Bachelor of Commerce and is in the final year of a law degree. Josh’s family runs a Braford cattle stud at Nabiac and he dreams of building his own agricultural empire whilst providing legal advice to country people.
A farm consultant and manager of two commercial beef properties and a stud cattle show team, Tim was dux of his year at Tocal Agricultural College. Based at Wyong Creek, he believes in constantly striving for economic and ethical sustainability and demonstrates how you can be involved in agriculture without owning land.