Riverina wool grower wants to continue as an industry advocate

INDUSTRY COMMITMENT: Paul Cocking of Mangoplah in southern NSW plans to continue to advocate for the wool industry. Picture: Nikki Reynolds
INDUSTRY COMMITMENT: Paul Cocking of Mangoplah in southern NSW plans to continue to advocate for the wool industry. Picture: Nikki Reynolds

WHEN Mangoplah wool grower Paul Cocking stepped onto the board of Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) four years ago he had high hopes. 

The main thing is I want is to thank the people who have supported me from beginning to end.

Paul Cocking

He held the position for two terms and advocated for research and development and greater support for growers. “I would have liked another term,” he told The Rural this week. 

Mr Cocking missed out on gaining re-election but said he still had strong grower support during the voting process. 

And he was grateful for that grower support. He believes it was the proxy vote that let him down. 

“The main thing is, I want to thank the people who have supported me from beginning to end,” he said. “I had a lot more work to do especially in research and development and within the government space, I am passionate about innovation,” he said. Mr Cocking said despite media reports of a “troubled AWI board” he continually supported the chairman. “I think it is important to show leadership in this industry,” he said. 

Mr Cocking said he was open to taking up other roles within the agri political sector but was tight lipped about potential leads. 

“I am disappointed about this because I campaigned well and was supportive of the board and the company,” he said. 

Mr Cocking, who runs a mixed farming property in southern NSW, said he would continue to support the industry.

He initially founded Riverina Wool Testers in Wagga, which was later sold, and also has a keen interest in growing quality wool.

When contacted by The Rural this week he took time out from lamb marking, which he noted was done using pain relief.