Putting the latest rural issues on the table at Innovation Generation

INDUSTRY FOCUS: Michael Southan, of Grain Growers with Innovation Genertion conference attendee, Brett Thomas of The Rock.
INDUSTRY FOCUS: Michael Southan, of Grain Growers with Innovation Genertion conference attendee, Brett Thomas of The Rock.

THE Rock farmer Brett Thomas was among more than 150 delegates who attended the Innovation Generation Conference in Wagga.

The two-and-a-half day event attracted delegates from as far away as New Zealand and was an initiative of GrainGrowers. 

It had an aim of imparting the latest industry information on the younger generation of farmers.

Mr Thomas of “Wonthaggi,” near The Rock is a generational farmer and grows winter crops and runs sheep and lambs. 

He attend the conference to take in information from various sessions ranging from succession planning, insurance and risk mitigation, human resources management and opportunities within corporate farming. 

“It was good to be there and among the younger farmers and agricultural professionals,” he said. 

When Mr Thomas took time out to talk to Fairfax media he was on the spray rig at The Rock property controlling weeds. 

He said working in the agricultural sector was something he always wanted to do.

In fact, when he was asked the question about his career as a young school pupil he would answer that he wanted to be a farmer. 

GrainGrowers chief executive officer Michael Southan said a big focus of the Wagga conference was to learn from other industries. 

Dr Southan said the aim was to proved plenty of diversity and there were opportunities to learn from other sectors.

“These farmers are keen to learn what is happening in other industries and how they can bring that onto their farm,” he said. 

“Grain farming is not something that should work in isolation,” Dr Southan said.

On Tuesday there was a break in the program to complete industry visits. The delegates attended the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) sites in Wagga, the Ladysmith Feedlot, Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory and Riverina Oil and Bio Energy plant. 

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