Time to start asking the right questions Agriculture

This weekend Young Farming Champion Hannah Barber and I ventured to Melbourne to the Australian Women In Agriculture National Conference.

Hannah was a member of a panel I facilitated called ‘Engaging Youth in Agriculture’

Also on the panel was Georgie Aley and Horizon Scholars Ashlee Hammond and Sarah Henderson

What we hoped the audience would take home from the session was

  • Exciting young people are choosing careers in the agriculture sector
  • Agriculture has wonderful cross industry leadership pathways for young people
  • Agriculture has a nationwide network for young people
  • Agriculture has exciting in school programs

What I was hoping ( and the session’s sponsor was hoping) is the audience would be confident that agriculture is attracting young people and we need to stop asking “How do we attract young people” and start asking “How do we retain the people we attract”

Hannah and I had a bit of time to fill in before our flight home so I took her to Crown Towers to show her how the “other half” live and the ultimate in producer to consumer goods.

Louis Vuitton

Hannah in Louis Vuitton

Hannah in Paspaley

Hannah in Paspaley  Pearls. The necklace that Hannah is wearing is worth $88,000

One question each of the panellists was asked was “Where do you see yourself in agriculture in 5 years time?”.

I would like to think that one day soon some-one like Hannah will say ‘In 5 years time I will have a career pathway in agriculture that provides me with the income to have a suite of Louis Vuitton luggage ( we weren’t game to ask what this little bundle was worth) and Paspaley Pearls in my jewellery box

Its time agriculture moved on to the next set of questions. We can attract young people but keeping them requires another set of tools and one of those is ensuring the sector is profitable. Farmers have just as much right as everyone else to make a fair return on investment. How can we work together to make this happen?

Author: Lynne Strong

I am a 6th generation farmer who loves surrounding myself with optimistic, courageous people who believe in inclusion, diversity and equality and embrace the power of collaboration. I am the founder of Picture You in Agriculture. Our team design and deliver programs that inspire pride in Australian agriculture and support young people to thrive in business and life

5 thoughts on “Time to start asking the right questions Agriculture”

  1. Wow! I haven’t seen many of my dairy farming peers driving $88,000 cars, Lynne, let alone wearing $88,000 necklaces! We’ll need radical change to make that a reality.

  2. How positive it is to see the agricultural industry embracing the need for profit. Unfortunately profit has been an assumed requirement. Many have openly coveted it, even talked it up on social media platforms such as twitter. This blog is proof writ large of the impact SM can have on a discussion. How people choose to spend their profit is entirely their choice, but generating profit affords many options.
    One of the future drivers of profitability in production agriculture will be the capacity building of its participants. The ability to shorten the value chain and capture more of the value inherent in it is critical. This will benefit both consumers and producers. Unfortunately it will mean parts of the agricultural value chain will come under pressure. But if the $88 000 pearl necklace or the Louis Vuitton luggage is going to appear for those in production agriculture this restructure needs to become a reality.
    Thanks for the blog Lynne, really enjoying your way of thinking

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