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IN THIS ISSUE: Cover Story
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Young farmer takes charge
Quigley Farms cultivating success
Advice from industry experts
Delta Grainâ€™s pool champ
Prospect | Winter 2013
ne can’t but help feel that in the agriculture sector we live in an embattled environment. We are all conditioned to dealing with the vagaries of climate, currency and commodity markets but the general diminution in national resources afforded our sector is now reaching alarming proportions. One only has to look at the representation and commentary that we receive now at the national government level to realise that agriculture has slipped right from the mainstream agenda. The recent ban on live cattle exports to Indonesia was a great example of the influence of metropolitan Australia over our sector. It showed in stark terms the political reality that our industry and its wellbeing were secondary to the considerations of the “cappuccino set” of inner metropolitan Australia. The effects of this ban whilst most profoundly impacting on Northern Australian grazing enterprises has now worked its way in terms of impact into Eastern and Southern markets. The flow of livestock seeking domestic processing slots has, together with the dry times in Northern Australia, impacted greatly on the price for cattle. In turn, the decrease in cattle prices has had a contagion effect on the other red meat proteins and we have seen significant declines in lamb prices. Whilst, it is unfair to sheet home all responsibility to the Federal Government it does set a national leadership example and has failed the industry in terms of the timely awarding of live export permits, the failure to achieve meaningful trade agreements with neighbours in our northern region, most notably South Korea and China and a deskilling of the Department and its extension services and continued relegation of national industry concerns to the back stalls. Interestingly, the Federal Government is not unique in this and over the past 18 to 24 months those officers in the public service dedicated to the agricultural sector have decreased by some 2000. This is a startling statistic and when measured against the general increase in public service employment at the same period is a reflection of the poor representation we currently enjoy across the full spectrum of government.
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In so many sectors of our industry we now see concentration: the grains sector, the processing sector with the consolidation of Teys Brothers and Cargill to now join with JBS and representing more than 50 per cent of our national processing capacity, and in the retailing sector where we endure the market dominance of Coles and Woolworths. In our own area of operation, Delta Ag has experienced a significant concentration of both its suppliers and competitors. We have seen Landmark pass into foreign ownership and there is reasonable prospect that Elders will follow the same path. Notwithstanding, whether foreign ownership or not, the consolidation of the industry and the “corporatisation” of the branch networks is doing much to change the delivery of service to regional farming communities. Delta is the standout point of difference in this regard having continued its growth in Eastern Australia without any compromise to its culture of community and local focus. For myself, as an outsider joining the organisation over the last couple of years, there is a compelling realisation that our culture and commitment to genuinely looking after the best interests of our clients, is in stark contrast to many of our competitors. One of the key reasons for this is our staff and the owners of the company are locally based and have a deeply felt commitment to the communities in which they work. Corporate structures cannot achieve this with the changing faces of personnel and centralisation of so many functions. With all the above changes inexorably underway in both our industry and our communities, it is important that organisations such as Delta continue to grow and offer career opportunities for the youth of our districts who do not wish to move away. By staying engaged and offering an integrated partnership with the farming communities, in the areas Delta Ag operates, we can continue to provide a net benefit whilst so much else in our industry is in retreat.
Nick Burton-Taylor Chairman, Delta Agribusiness 2
Prospect | Winter 2013
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FOR FARMERS IN THE KNOW
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Prospect | Winter 2013
Prospect|Hot Topics Farm Finance to support farmers
A new package of measures to assist farmers struggling with acute levels of debt has been announced by the Australian Government. Farm Finance consists of four measures: • Concessional loans to help restructure debt; • Extra rural financial counsellors to work directly with farm businesses; • Progressing a nationally consistent approach to debt mediation across the country; • Enhancing the Farm Management Deposits Scheme. Farmers from around Australia along with peak farming bodies have contributed to the development of Farm Finance. The Australian Government held a Rural Finance Roundtable in October last year which brought together representatives of the rural and banking sectors to discuss access to finance and farm debt. At the roundtable the government heard firsthand accounts from parts of the agricultural sector experiencing debt pressures due to lower land valuations, low product prices, and high input costs. The government has sought the assistance of state governments to administer low interest loans through state delivery agencies. It will be up to individual jurisdictions to determine if they wish to take up the offer for their communities. The increase in funding for the Rural Financial Counselling Service will start from 1 July 2013, enhancements for Farm Management Deposits will take effect from 1 July 2014 and the concessional loans measure will take effect as soon as possible. More information is available at www.daff.gov.au/farmfinance
Landholders across the Namoi and Border Rivers floodplains are being encouraged to check their eligibility for a Floodplain Harvesting Licence.
NSW Water Commissioner David Harriss said the Healthy Floodplains project is currently being rolled out following the initial phase in the Gwydir Valley. “The project is primarily about improving the management of floodplain structures which includes the regulation and licensing of floodplain harvesting activities to ensure the sharing of floodplain water between water users and the environment,” Mr Harriss said. He added that water taken from the floodplain other than basic landholder rights will need to be licensed which will be considered upon completion of a registration form. The process will provide information about the location, size and impact of floodplain structures, including floodplain stages, which will assist in the implementation of the NSW Floodplain Harvesting Policy which is part of the $500 million NSW Sustaining the Basin project. “Landholders that receive a floodplain harvesting licence will be guaranteed access to floodplain water and their licence will be able to be traded. All floodplain harvesting activities in the project area will be incorporated into the NSW Licencing Framework by the end of June 2015,” Mr Harriss said. The closing date for Namoi and Border Rivers registration is 1 July 2013. For more information visit www.water.nsw.gov.au/mdb, phone 1800 353 104 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Dairy prices tipped to rise
ABARES is forecasting a 2 per cent improvement in global dairy prices this year to $2.3 billion, following two years of sharp falls in prices experienced by Australian dairy farmers.
Tour of western NSW highlights opposition to mandatory electronic tags A NSW Farmers’ tour of Walgett, Brewarrina, Bourke and White Cliffs has highlighted the strong opposition from sheep and goat farmers to mandatory electronic identification tags.
As part of the predicted dairy prices to 2017-18 presented at its annual outlook conference earlier this year, ABARES economist Trish Gleeson said higher world dairy prices expected in 2013-14 would see Australian farm gate milk prices likely to increase to an average 39.4 cents a litre.
NSW Farmers’ President Fiona Simson said in a recent news release she has heard firsthand from producers about the huge cost and burden this change to the National Livestock Identification Scheme (NLIS) will place on them.
“The price rise is due to increasing global demand for dairy products. It is largely driven by consumers in developing countries, particularly in Asia,” Ms Gleeson said. “However, growth in supplies from key exporting countries is expected to be limited.”
“Farmers in western NSW have made it clear that mandatory electronic tags are not cost effective, will be a logistical nightmare and that they want us to fight to ensure they are not introduced,” Ms Simson said.
Ms Gleeson also expects expansion in dairy herds in Victoria, southern NSW and Tasmania which will then be offset by lower production in the regions that rely more on the drinking-milk market.
The news release also quoted from a recent report from the Primary Industries Ministerial Council Working Group on NLIS (Sheep and Goats) which has identified upwards of $37 million in costs to producers as well as significant additional costs along the supply chain. The report estimates that 10,000 sheep producers will need to purchase scanners which can each cost up to $2000, equating to a total industry cost to producers of up to $10 million.
The forecast increase in dairy export values is expected to come from higher cheese and skim milk powder exports.
The report which was commissioned by the Standing Council on Primary Industries (SCoPI) suggests there are “no insurmountable barriers” to the phased implementation of an electronic NLIS system from 1 January 2014 despite the need for a “substantial investment of resources and funding”. The full report was due for review at the SCoPI meeting in May. 4
Northern district landholders asked to register for floodplain licence
Prospect | Winter 2013
New head for NFF
Western Riverina farmer and former vice-president of the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) Duncan Fraser, has taken over the top job of the NFF in light of the resignation of Jock Laurie. A grazier in the New England region (Walcha), Mr Laurie recently announced he would be stepping down to run for pre-selection for the National Party in the NSW seat of the Northern Tablelands for the upcoming federal election. Mr Fraser who owns and runs a wool, sheep meat, rice and wheat property at Hay with his family will head the nation’s peak farm body until the next election is held at the NFF Members’ Council AGM in November.
There’s a family trait to getting into cattle early, especially with the women. Tegan Nock, NSW Young Farmers
How this young farmer is leading the way Photography | Felicity Dunn Photography
egan Nock grew up on a cereal property in the Central West of NSW and whilst in high school established Yandilla Cattle Stud on her family’s farm. She has now completed a degree in Agricultural Science, spent last year raising awareness of agriculture in the Eastern states as part of the Australian Year of the Farmer Roadshow, is a 2013 Australian Cattle Council Rising Champion NSW Finalist, and is now embarking on a new challenge – recently elected as Chair of the NSW Young Farmers’ Council. And all this at just 22 years of age. Rosie O’Keeffe speaks to Tegan about her passion for living a dream life on the land.
Tegan, I understand that your grandfather was born on his mother’s property outside the small village of Bogan Gate in the Central West district of NSW and first purchased his own farming property when he was 19. Can you tell us briefly about your family’s property in which you are a part of today. My parents are on 2800 hectares just south of Bogan Gate and it’s predominantly a cereal property with wheat and barley, oilseeds and pulses, depending on what we’re working with in the year. There’s a commercial Angus herd which I run on about 600 hectares of land that is more suited towards native pastures and is less arable. There’s also an Angus stud which I established in high school in response to a need we identified to grow the enterprise and spread a bit of risk in the middle of the big 10-year drought. My father (Lloyd) and I are full-time at the moment out in the paddocks with the practical side of things, and my mum (Kristine) focuses on the business. I also have a brother Rory who has worked on the farm but is travelling at the moment, and my sister Shanna who is still at school. How did the establishment of the Angus stud come about? It’s obviously quite a feat for a 16-year-old girl to instigate such a significant extension to the family’s business… I’m fairly lucky my parents have always considered us as equal 6
Prospect | Winter 2013
on the farm and we’ve always had a say and been involved in the decision making so it was a fairly natural process for me to step up and start a stud. We had always had a small cattle herd on our place and it was reminiscent of the cattle herd my grandmother started in her rural youth when she was just 15 so there’s a family trait to getting into cattle early, especially with the women. Do you feel in general that the role of women is changing, and even progressively growing, in terms of their practical involvement in farming businesses? I’m very lucky I’ve been surrounded by strong women so there’s definitely no gender inequality on our farm, the women have always had just as much say as the men and I had a fairly good education in that sense too. I think on a whole – even in my parents’ generation – there is no real differentiation between men and women in the decision making process and even practical hands-on things on the farm… There’s absolutely no reason why women and young people can’t be just as valued in farming businesses… you can go to a farm now and women are just as valued and as important and practical in operations. Dad always said to me, “you may not be as strong as the boys but as long as you think harder you don’t have to work harder, you’re just as useful”.
Tell me about your passion for farming and your earliest memories of life on the farm… Did you always envisage a career in agriculture? It’s never been a question of if but a question of where I would fit in within the scheme of the industry. From a fairly early age I wanted to be running some sort of primary production business and I guess that stemmed from a childhood that was spent raising poddy lambs and spending my weekends driving chaser bins. There’s so much to love about it – it’s hard work and there’s a lot of risk involved but the freedom of being able to be your own boss, to be with your family, and to be able to work on the land I’ve grown up on, there’s a sense of real freedom. I’m not just working for a dollar, I’m working for something I’m passionate about and it’s a very holistic type of job and you can see your crop grow from when you sat down and planned it out through to sending it off. With a lot of other jobs you don’t see the direct results and what you are actually achieving. We’re totally in the hands of the gods as farmers though… Dad often describes his job as a professional gambler when it comes to the weather. I’ve really learnt that no matter what you do you have to consider and minimise that risk when you go into a venture so we’re trying to improve our pastures so they are more drought friendly and we have converted to zero till to get that water retention going over summer. You were recently elected as the Chair of the NSW Young Farmers’ Council. Can you explain briefly what the role of the Council is? We’re a state-based organisation and our role is to lobby on issues that will directly affect young farmers (18 to 35 years) so that’s talking about farm acquisition, primary production and the pathways to land ownership or establishing an agricultural business, education for young people in agriculture… anything that arises that directly affects young people on farms. How relevant do you believe the Young Farmers’ Council is in addressing issues concerning the future of agriculture and how did you become involved? We need to be involved in the conversation otherwise we will get to a point where we’ve let things slip by and we’ve shot ourselves
in the foot by not being involved. I actively became a member at university because some friends were becoming involved, and I hadn’t realised until then that there was an opportunity to be a part of young farmers’ things. It’s just so important for us to have a say especially since we are such a voting minority with the way the trend’s going with ageing farmers… In 10 to 20 years’ time it’s going to be us who make up the majority of the industry. It will be our industry, so we can’t sit around and complain about decisions made now if we haven’t got in and done something about it. I understand that recently the Young Farmers’ Council has been working to try and alleviate the pressures facing young people in agriculture acquiring land. How significant do you believe the issue is and what can be done to assist people in making a career/lifestyle choice in agriculture viable? I know NSW Farmers’ head office has had countless numbers of enquiries on support for land acquisition for young farmers and we’re working with the Minister for Primary Industries Katrina Hodgkinson at the moment on trying to form some structure around young farmers and stepping up future primary production but we’re a fairly long term industry and politics seems to rely on short term things and money is always tight… What we really want to do is to get people thinking about other ways of working your way into farm acquisition. Young people just can’t afford to spend half a million dollars to buy a farm to support a family, they have to work up to that point. It’s about encouraging people to think about other options out there – share farming, leasing a farm, sourcing investors, even agisting land – to work your way to having some equity to loan against. It’s a huge issue for us and as your cost of production increases the size of the actual farm you have to buy to support a family is going to increase as well. It’s hard for us to buy now but in the future we’re going to have to buy more to actually support a business, but I guess with that, as our cost of production goes up our efficiency does too, but at the moment we are seeing governments slashing research and development in agriculture and our investment systems are even being compromised at the moment from a lot of different angles so it’s a really complex system, but we’ve got to remember it has been done and it can be done, but it takes some serious thought… u Prospect | Winter 2013
What would you like to achieve principally in your role now as Chair of the Young Farmers’ Council? I’d like to raise the profile of young people in farming and display not only to the industry but to all of NSW that young people in farming are business savvy and we’re politically savvy too. We are seeing more metropolitan people coming into the agricultural sector but we do need to encourage agriculture to city people. It’s already regarded as a great lifestyle but what we need to be telling people who are making their career choices is that agriculture is not a poor industry, we have a lot of agribusiness and there are some really fantastic jobs and money to be made and not just on-farm, but in other areas like agripolicy or agricultural law. Obviously the lobbying and advocacy is a big part of what we do but we would also like to form a strong network within NSW of young farmers and young people in agricultural businesses so we can have dialogue and connect within the entire industry. We have a lot of professional development with our members with workshops to do with the business and the production of farming. We recently held a livestock focused production tour at Armidale to visit producers who are using really good technologies and innovations to produce really high quality products… and we’re working with the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) up there to look at the systems used in pasture efficiency, and it was also a good networking opportunity. What do you believe are the biggest challenges facing our young farmers? Cost of production is a huge issue for us, gaining capital and acquiring land as mentioned, we do need to find ways to get around that. Research and development is really being compromised the way things are going and we’ll see the results of that in 10 years’ time so young farmers especially really need to become more vocal. But education is also a big one, the fact that some high schools are dropping agriculture from the curriculum. I had to do agriculture by distance when I went to high school and that was a school located right in the middle of the wheat belt so if we can’t even have agriculture subjects out here, you wonder what is going on in the city schools and whether that’s a reason we’re losing more people than we should. Access to education is definitely a huge issue as well as all the on-farm challenges. Do you believe that agriculture has a bright future? In the past farming has been perceived as a lifestyle choice but now we have to be really business savvy and technologically advanced and innovative. So now, more so than ever, it is crucial that we treat farming as a business and a career. There’s a bright future in farming… we just need to work with the new challenges that we are being handed, but the markets are holding up and we have fantastic new technologies so the future’s bright in the investment. I believe that after various commitments last year and getting a taste of global agricultural through a study tour to Vietnam whilst at university and in 2010 and 2011 travel to India and Indonesia to run workshops as part of a Syngenta Connections development program, you may be hoping for a “bit of downtime” this year back on the family property. What do you think the future will hold for you personally? I would really like to travel a little bit more before I really do settle down. Agriculture really does go across languages, you can travel easily with it and it’s a really exciting industry to be in globally. There’s a big need for research and development and even business overseas, you’re definitely not stuck in Australia. At the moment though I’m trying to increase the numbers within the stud and I’m trying to improve the technology that we use that benefits our customers. Down the track I would really like to focus on buying a property here at Bogan Gate and sink my teeth into farming and being a primary producer. 8
Prospect | Winter 2013
And it appears Tegan definitely hasn’t ‘settled down yet’… While she has been busy on a tractor helping sow winter crops and managing Yandilla Cattle Stud, she is also furthering her study by completing a small business certificate through TAFE, and is in the midst of preparing for a new challenge – to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in July.
22/01/13 5:35 PM
CULTIVATING THE SEEDS TO SUCCESS
Despite a family farming history spanning more than 125 years in the Trangie region, Tony and Sally Quigley are certainly not resting on their laurels when it comes to diversifying and developing their enterprise. From hosting university students to being a part of a number of new Federal Government water saving initiatives, they are certainly paving the way for their three boys, Tom, George and Richie, to take over the reins of their irrigation, dryland farming and livestock operation. Rosie O’Keeffe recently found out how their agricultural business is constantly adapting to ensure viability and future growth. Photography | SixtybyTwenty
They’re a really innovative tool that gives good interaction in the soil to monitor the crop uses on an hour-by-hour basis. Tony Quigley
Prospect | Winter 2013
he Quigley family’s irrigation systems are moving with the times – literally.
For the first time this growing season, 130 hectares of irrigated cotton crops grown at the wider Quigley family property “Muntham” at Trangie in western NSW, have been under a linear move irrigator rather than the traditional flood system which the family formerly predominantly used. “It’s part of our involvement in the Federal Government’s Water for the Future program. We’re trying to move to other forms of irrigation to try and maintain or increase yield and to try and reduce the amount of water per hectare, so in essence we’re trying to improve our bales per megalitre,” Tony Quigley explains, as he and his team of pickers complete this season’s cotton harvest. Over spring last year, the Quigleys planted 520ha of irrigated cotton overall which has since resulted in farm record yields for the crop in what Tony describes as a particularly dry growing season with just 100mm of rain falling since July 2012. “We have had better than 14 bales/ha averaged across the area, even though there has only been a little bit ginned at this point. It’s probably the best crop we’ve ever had in a hot summer, but having said that, the price is quite flat mainly because of the high Aussie dollar with prices hovering around the $420/$440 a bale…” Tony, who began growing cotton on the property in 1984 after graduating from Orange Agricultural College, says. He mentions that this dry summer was considerably different to the cool, wet summer experienced in 2012/13 which he concedes had been difficult to manage. “It kept going from hot to cold and cloudy, and back to hot again. It was one of the coldest seasons on record so we’ve gone from one of the coolest seasons on record to one of the hottest seasons on record,” he says. Even though Tony used just shy of 9 megalitres of water to the hectare for the cotton crops for this season, rainfall in February meant water from the last crop irrigation was retained and stored for use next year.
Operators Program, a three-year initiative included in the wider Murray-Darling Basin Plan to modernise and rejuvenate irrigation systems with the water savings being returned to the environment. He is in the midst of the modernisation program which will cease in September next year. He describes it as a “game changer” for the industry. “It’s a once in a generation opportunity to revamp the irrigation scheme which is 40 years old and to get it up to the modern age and make it sustainable in the long term through a lower allocation/water use,” he says. As part of the program the length of the scheme is being reduced from 250km to 160km with farmers on the outer reaches of the scheme now sold out of their water and moved into dryland operations. The emphasis is to line the channels with rubber to reduce transmission losses as well as the provision of farm infrastructure such as linear moves, central pivots and restructuring surface irrigation schemes, to also assist with water savings. Previously, delivery losses have stood at around 27 per cent with this program aimed at reducing losses to just 7 per cent. “The underlying principle is flexibility to make it economically sustainable. Previously we have all been locked into growing cotton and irrigating at the same time to try and minimise transmission losses in the scheme system… Individual members/ irrigators are now free to decide what crop they grow and when they irrigate it because it won’t affect their neighbours…” he explains. Even though Tony has been keen to embrace new programs to increase efficiency with water use, he admits he still prefers using conventional pickers when it comes to harvesting the cotton rather than working with round bale pickers. “We’re still picking our own cotton with basket pickers, we actually like them because they pick cleaner than the round balers. We are getting more cotton off the bush and we’re not faced with the higher cost of bale wrap each year,” he says. u
Tony has always tried to remain ahead of the game when it comes to farming cotton, even having pioneered the use of capacitance soil moisture probes in the cotton industry in the mid-1990s. “They’re a really innovative tool that gives good interaction in the soil to monitor the crop uses on an hour-by-hour basis. Capacitance probes have now taken over in the past four to five years as the major source of soil moisture monitoring,” he says. With issues surrounding water availability threatening to somewhat constrain the Quigley’s business, it’s certainly a challenge Tony has been trying to alleviate since drought years completely halted the family’s cotton production (the main profit driver for their business) from 2004 to 2010. “The drought period had a major effect on our operation, so we’re really playing catch up again now to get ahead, but reliability of water has become a big issue and we’re doing some of these initiatives on-farm now to try and secure our viability in the long term by giving us the flexibility to grow a variety of crops by controlling the amount of water we’re putting on each crop,” Tony explains, also positively adding though, that the lack of management for cotton crops during the drought gave the family the opportunity to sharpen the enterprise’s dryland production system by using new techniques, including fine-tuning the tramlining system. Tony is a board member of the Trangie Nevertire Irrigation Scheme which is part of the Private Irrigation Infrastructure Prospect | Winter 2013
George, Sally, Tony & Tom Quigley
Richie, George, Tom, Sally & Tony Quigley
Tony & Sally Quigley
Prospect | Winter 2013
ony and Sally Quigley have always maintained a strong focus on ensuring the family enterprise will be viable into the future for their three boys Tom, 25, George, 23, and Richie, 21, who as fifth generation farmers have all decided to further their studies in agriculture at university after spending a year after finishing school working on the farm.
what happens on a farm. “I guess there’s been a bit of a stigma among farmers with usage of water, with cotton and rice growers being portrayed as the ‘bad guys’ of the irrigation industry, so it’s been an effective way in balancing it out and showing that we are people and we are sustainable in the long term, it’s not just a short term grab,” Tony says.
“We’ve actually encouraged them to work on the farm from an early age, they were never paid pocket money, they worked onfarm and we had a pay rate that was based around what year they were in at school… It really taught them the value of money too,” Tony, whose great grandfather originally selected land at Trangie soon after the railway arrived in 1887, recalls.
The Quigley family recently hosted a group of 98 first and second year University of Sydney Agricultural Science and Agricultural Economics students as part of an annual western region tour. It was the first year the family has been involved in such an event in recent years, after having previously regularly hosting groups from Orange Agricultural College.
“When we sent them to boarding school in Sydney to open their eyes to all the other possibilities other than farming, as we didn’t want them to think this was the only life there was, interestingly, after opportunities to follow other career paths, they all ended up doing agricultural degrees one way or another.
“We showed them the irrigation scheme modernisation program we are involved with, and then we looked at the agronomy of cotton and the general farm operations to give them an insight into agriculture in this region,” Tony explains. “They were all very interested, some had grown up on cotton farms and knew exactly what I was talking about while others hadn’t been west of the Blue “They’ve always been involved in the farm and I think they Mountains before, so we tried to pitch it at a level so that everyone preferred to be working for themselves and seeing the results got some understanding of what real life agriculture is all about.” of their own decisions. They’ve always had an input into the business even from when they were still at school we used to The Quigleys are also involved in a benchmarking project expose them to meetings with our accountant.” in collaboration with 20 fellow farmers, to analyse financial performance with their peers to see where they fit with their So much so, that the family’s practical roles on the farm have successes and weaknesses. evolved to reflect each of their individual interests and abilities. Tony, who was originally going to study economics/law, before “The boys in particular have been heavily involved in that and eventually deciding a life in agriculture was the career he was they enjoy looking at the information to understand financial most passionate about after spending a gap year working on- performance. This has been analysed through the Agripath farm, is the general manager of farm operations. Sally, who met system, by an independent consultant against a peer reference Tony at Orange Agricultural College and trained in business group which really helps you to understand what drives profit in management after growing up on a livestock and poppy farming your business. It certainly keeps everyone on their toes and we operation in Tasmania, manages the office and all the finances, all understand that you’ve got to make good decisions nearly all and handles the grain and cotton contracts. Eldest son Tom, of the time to stay ahead of the pack because farming’s not a with the help of valued long-term employee Duane Hohnberg, high return industry. It looks at the whole farm, not just cotton, now largely runs the dryland farming part of the operation which and benchmarks your performance according to what you’re includes 2200ha of winter crops such as wheat, canola and chick managing, thus giving you an understanding of how your business peas, and grazing oats/Lucerne for the 1500 Merino ewes put works. We are just a number on a graph so it’s confidential, but it’s to Border Leicester rams as well as the 150-head, self-replacing particularly important to know where we are going. herd of Hereford/Angus cross cows. “It gives you a good idea of what you’re good at and what you’re Weather has actually played a significant role in their dryland not good at and where you need to improve or where you are cropping operation especially in weed control with the last winter already doing pretty well.” crop grown on subsoil moisture making it critical to try and keep Fleabane, Umbrella Grass and other hard-to-kill weeds under And this is going to be an all too important factor as the farming control with a range of herbicides before they use up valuable enterprise expands to accommodate family members who will all moisture. “Tom is really committed to that part of the operation and continue to take an active role in the operations, which Tony and that’s his passion, and has pushed us in that direction to invest Sally are both very excited about. in a disc planter and 36-metre boom spray to try and improve our productivity,” Tony says. “We’ve intensified what we do here to try and maximise the return with the assets we already own so that includes redeveloping a lot “George, who’s just graduated from university, ran the irrigation of the old irrigation country, better layout, and also the linear move system this season through all the heatwave conditions we had technology and trying to set ourselves up to be more flexible or in January. Richie is still at university but he’s a valuable part of more resilient as the water supply goes up and down with the the farming operation on his own, he gets all of the crop reports climate. At the end of the day (the boys) will all want to become that come through from our agronomist so he’s just as aware as independent operators, but at this stage we’ve got four separate the rest of us what’s going on throughout the growing season. properties that we run and the strength is that we run them as He sometimes comes in with a different perspective because one business unit, and one machinery and labour unit, to have he’s not here all the time and asks questions as to why we do that integration between them all. It can be a challenge though, in things certain ways and that can sometimes make us sit down having as many diverse enterprises as we have, trying to manage and analyse what we are doing and why.” the labour and timing conflicts and to prioritise the labour and machinery to make sure we get the highest returns over the total Richie is also one of 12 nationwide participants in the Art for enterprise. Agriculture Young Farming Champion program, which aims to promote the industry as a dynamic, rewarding and vibrant “I certainly see more growth ahead of us. We need to keep industry to be involved with. As part of his involvement, Richie moving forward and be as efficient as we can with the resources created a YouTube video I grow cotton and you wear it as well as that we’ve got and once we’ve got to our goal there then expand conducting several school visits to create awareness of and take on more land to add to it.” Prospect | Winter 2013
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Baking up a record
It really taught us a lot about what’s involved with grain beyond the farm gate and that is bread making. Neil Unger, Farmer
You may have all heard the phrase paddockto-plate, but it took on a new meaning at Parkes recently when local farmer Neil Unger and baker Morten Staer toppled a Guinness World Record. There had already been quite a buzz about town with the annual Elvis Festival in full swing, but as Rosie O’Keeffe discovers, the world record attempt in harvesting and baking bread in the fastest time also created unprecedented attention amongst local people and visitors alike. u
Prospect | Winter 2013
Harvesting the wheat
Michael Gascoigne transferring the wheat to be milled Tipping in the grain to be milled
Everyone was going flat out, there’s no two ways about it.
The grain being sieved
Getting the bread out of the oven
Neil Unger, Farmer
Baker Morten Staer tips the flour into the mixer then the dough is mixed
Judges: Nationals Leader Warren Truss, radio broadcaster Alan Jones & Mayor of Parkes Ken Keith
Warren Truss, Ken Keith, Deborah Collier, Alan Jones, Brad Faint, Morten Staer & Neil Unger
Photography | Roel Pencate, Champion Post
ow long do you think it would normally take wheat, mill it into flour, then bake it into bread? Weeks or months, even years? It reported even just the rising process using take between one hour and 24 hours.
to harvest loaves of has been yeast can
So it was quite the achievement when a small group from Parkes in Central West NSW proved the entire process can be done in just 16 minutes. Despite the event which was held in January being more than 12 months in the making, Neil Unger, a semi-retired farmer who grows wheat on properties located at Parkes, Trundle and Alectown, and also a piggery, and who initiated the attempt, still believes there was a lot of luck involved in the record haul. “It was a unique set of circumstances that we pulled it off, the wheat ripened in the middle of November and two months later it was still as good as when it was ripe. Normally it would have been rained on, be shot and sprung, mouldy and flat on the ground. One thing that saved us was that it didn’t rain,” Neil tells me. It took just over four minutes from when the header started to harvest the Livingston variety in the paddock, which is actually located adjacent to the famous Parkes radio telescope, to the 13 loaves being placed in the portable oven (specifically made for the attempt) for the baking process. “Everyone was going flat out, there’s no two ways about it. John (Neil’s son) nearly tore the brakes out on the header pulling up and the wheat was taken from the wheelbarrow bowl under the grain elevator by bucket to the mill, but I do believe we could still save a minute here and there,” Neil vividly recalls. 16
Prospect | Winter 2013
According to Neil, the Guinness World Record guidelines are very strict with the time recorded from when the header tyres turn to when the last of the loaves hits the cooling tray. This happened to be 16 minutes and 30 seconds once the stop watches of the judges Leader of the Nationals Warren Truss, radio broadcaster Alan Jones and Parkes Mayor Ken Keith were correlated, almost two whole minutes faster than the previous world record of 18 minutes 11 seconds set by a UK baker. “It really taught us a lot about what’s involved with grain beyond the farm gate and that is bread making. I had no idea how much wheat would be required for the bakers’ dozen. We knew from the 13 loaves we would need between 6-8kg of flour but we wondered how much actual baking flour you can get out of so much wheat and we ended up with far more than we required so that could be an avenue for speeding the process up in the future. But the drought we were having definitely worked in our favour and according to the harvesting, the milling, the mixing and the baking, the hot temperature was well and truly on our side. The grain was probably 60 degrees Celsius which is perfect to go through the mill and the mixing table had been too hot to touch,” Neil comments. “Looking back now we figure there’s probably half a minute in it yet, we can cut a few seconds here and there, we could have pulled the bread out of the oven after 11 and a half minutes instead of 12 minutes, and we probably sieved double the amount of flour we needed.” The event attracted around 700 spectators and was held whilst Parkes had an influx of tourists for the annual Elvis Festival. Neil admitted he had been alarmed to learn that so many visitors are unaware of the grain growing and the harvesting processes.
“It was pleasing though that we did get the record and the day was such a success with a much bigger crowd than we expected,” Neil says. As a board member of Currajong Disability Services at Parkes, Neil had decided to attempt the world record to raise money for the local organisation, after having read about the world record in 1998, but never having a reason to try and go one better. “We raised over $10,000 for Currajong. We really wanted to enhance the profile of Currajong as one of the biggest employers in Parkes, and get some money together to support people with disabilities. We also wanted to do it to show the British who can bake bread – even though there was never any doubt,” Neil quips. And with Neil writing for a pig farming magazine which is distributed through the UK and Europe on topical happenings in agriculture, and having contributed to other UK farming magazines in the past, the connection gave him more incentive to take the record off their hands.
John Unger on the tractor with the Parkes radio telescope in background
“It was interesting when I started to write for magazines over there in the late 1980s to see what the British did and in fact I learnt a lot from it. They seemed to be so far ahead of us in terms of continuous cropping, chemicals and fertilizers,” Neil believes, also adding that contributing to the magazines somewhat influenced the paddock-to-plate record, as he read about the previous record being achieved in one of the publications. “We’ve definitely caught up and in some ways we have passed them because we have been pushed on costs whereas they are still subsidised and receive grants to a large degree, although that is diminishing.” Neil is also whiling away the hours building his own aeroplane so he can travel to other parts of NSW and even other states to see how the crops are shaping up.
John & Neil Unger
“I have been fiddling around with this home built one for 10 years. I had the fuselage and everything finished between three and four years ago and I would have been flying except I couldn’t see much future in the 1940s aircraft engines… so I decided to convert a car engine. Within a week or two I should be ready to fly with a Mazda rotary,” Neil explains. “A lot of my flying is spent checking on different districts and going to see what farmers are doing and hopefully be able to capitalise on that knowledge. In the same time frame in a car you are flat out going 600 miles whereas in the aeroplane you can cover 160 miles in an hour. Photography | Justine McGregor
“This one is a paddock machine and what I can do is put Tundra tyres on it, 18 inches in diameter and I can land nearly anywhere, really benefit the clients and give them satisfaction that they’ve and if I’m really keen I could put floats on it to transform it into a achieved something for the day,” he says. sea plane. And in case you were wondering, Neil’s already keen to start “Before I started building the plane I had virtually no knowledge planning the next record attempt… of having to construct something as light as possible using aluminium and composites (fibre glass and carbon fibre). The “The record that we took was called the team effort, there is knowledge I have gained has since been widely used in repairs another one for individual effort which I am also looking at,” Neil says. “We have since discovered though that the circumstances on farm machinery especially the composite construction.” we succeeded in were unique and in talking to Grain Growers we Neil is also hoping to set up a small farm that the disabled people could never hold it at this time of the year again, we need top from Currajong Disability Services can have access to and take quality wheat. pride in visiting. “There are not enough hours in the year to prepare for another “The mini farm is a work in progress but we think it’s a good idea record attempt this harvest and if we do it again we’ll most likely so they can come out and feed goats, pigs, chickens and cats… do the two at the same time, and see if we can cut the team record and they can go home at night and say what they did rather than further. This time with a bit of experience I reckon there’s definitely half a minute in it, and possibly even longer.” doing the same jigsaw puzzle day in and day out. I think it will Prospect | Winter 2013
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Eris Fleming’s Central West Medley
Circle Work by John Murray
What happens when utes are put out to pasture? Rosie O’Keeffe recently found out as she discovered the story behind the quirky outdoor “Utes in the Paddock” gallery at the little town of Ootha where iconic images and characters have all been painted or sculpted by Australian artists in a unique way – on Holden utes. Thousands continue to descend on the Central West region of NSW to see the magnificent panorama and share in this rare creative celebration of outback life.
It’s absolute nonsense… but I thought it would be a good thing for art and a good promotion for the Australian outback.
Dame Edna’s Looute by Karen Tooth 20
Prospect | Winter 2013
Ute of Arms by Brad Brown & Scott Edwards
John Murray, Artist
Michael Jones’ The Stockman
hilst the sight of a Holden ute being driven across vast open farm paddocks may not be a rare one for those involved in agriculture, the sight of 20 utes all painted and sculpted to depict outback life at the little village of Ootha near Condobolin certainly is. Located on historic sheep and cattle station Burrawang West, the magnificent and yet quirky farm gallery with artists’ impressions of a 7-metre tall red kangaroo, Dame Edna Everage, a stockman, an emu, a cotton field ready for harvest, and Ned Kelly, is certainly proving very popular. “The gallery shows a selection of outback life in Australia… the collection now tells all about the history of the area, the economy and all of the various industries that are represented here, the iconic characters and people famous for entertainment, music, all kinds of villains and celebrated characters: as a whole it seems to cover every element of outback life. Each artist came up with their own theme and approach to it, so it has really accomplished what we intended it to without much influence at all,” Jana Pickles says. It was actually travelling along Route 66 while enjoying a trip to the United States that graziers Graham and Jana Pickles were drawn to an unusually popular attraction named “Cadillac Ranch” where 10 classic Cadillacs are buried to their windshields and provide a public spray paint graffiti canvas for anyone wanting to leave their mark. When the couple returned home, they wanted to create an attraction from a similar concept however this one was to have roots in outback Australia and feature quality artworks by artists with a passion for the outback. And so the idea to use Holden utes for their project was born. “They’re the iconic Australian outback vehicle and Holden is one of the most recognised Australian manufacturer of utes... We have one of each of the models that Holden has produced, the earliest going back 25 plus years right through to the current models,” Jana tells me. The utes were all donated by local residents or businesses. The Pickles started by asking around town if anybody had any old Holden utes that they might be interested in donating to a community project, however after installing the first utes into the paddock people started to approach them willing to give them their utes. “The work our group does on the utes to prepare them for each artist depends on the condition of the ute itself, some we’ve had to remove rust while others are in pristine condition. We take all the motors out and the glass is removed and replaced with a hard surface and an outer coating is applied to the surface to provide the canvas for the artist,” Jana says. “It is a community project and a large number of people in the local area have played a part including local artists.” The first artist approached to be involved was John Murray who has an art gallery in Lightning Ridge in northern NSW. The inspiration for John’s artwork on a 1971 Holden HQ series ute was a “pack of galahs” – his take on young larrikins doing circle work in a paddock. “I painted a blue sky and had the galahs flying around the ute as opposed to a ute doing circle work around a paddock. As I started working on it and thinking about it, I thought there’s always a bigger galah who is the more responsible one and that became the fun police, depicted in a galah seemingly towing the ute away. It’s absolute nonsense… but I thought it would be a good thing for art and a good promotion for the Australian outback,” John says.
“A Holden ute is as iconic as a kangaroo and Vegemite, it’s just a legendary thing. The gallery keeps growing in strength and I think a lot of other Australian artists would love to do it so I’m really proud I got in and did it.” Like many of the artists involved, John painted his ute at Burrawang West Station in a special shed, now known as the “artists’ studio”, some taking just a few short days, while others were completed over two weeks. “It was quite peaceful working there in the middle of the paddock painting the ute. It was really different, you see artists go out with their canvases on location, and here I was with a pot of paint and a ute… I felt so happy to be a part of it and all the artists became like a little family. We all got along very well, there were no egos, we weren’t bonded by our styles, we bonded because we had all painted a ute which is really quite special. It’s what the outback is all about, people don’t do things for monetary value,” he says, also revealing he chose to use paint that would withstand the extreme Australian climatic conditions. Many artists have since been enthusiastic to also become involved including local industrial artists Brad and Scott of Agriweld of Dubbo and inspired young artists of the local Wiradjuri Arts Group who have turned their creative energies into original artworks for the gallery. Graham and Jana have always had a passion for the Australian bush and purchased Burrawang West Station in 2000. The property comprises approximately 5600 hectares on the Bumbuggan Creek in the Lachlan River valley and principally includes a Dorper and White Dorper sheep stud and a prime lamb operation based on these breeds. Sheep flocks are often seen grazing in the ute gallery paddock and surrounding pastures. The Pickles admit that originally they hoped to get to 10 utes for the display, however the enthusiasm of artists and the donations of more utes, meant they continued the project until there were 20 to complete the gallery, as well as a further two utes located at satellite displays in nearby Condobolin and Yoeval. According to Jana, the location had previously been off the beaten track for many potential visitors however now it seems with this attraction there’s a whole new wave of travellers flocking to the area. “We just hoped to create a bit of interest to drive into this part of the state and then see what else there is to do, places of interest and things to experience in the Central West,” Jana says. “It’s rare for us to look over at the utes and not have at least one or multiple vehicles stopped there. They are parked there all the time during the day and during holiday times and weekends there can be between 15 and 20 vehicles at a time so it has become very popular. I took a survey last Easter on one afternoon and we had 90 vehicles stop in an hour and a half. It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, what season it is or what weather condition it is, it is always busy. “The utes happen to be located on private property but only by virtue that it was the land we had available to put them on. They’re just along the roadway, fenced off but you can see them clearly from your car or by taking a short walk (standing within about five metres of them) with an individual sign explaining each work. You can stay for as long as you like, it’s open every day and it is free of charge. “No matter what your background is, whether it’s the ute models or the colours, the engineering of the display, or the story the gallery tells, there’s something there for everyone.” Prospect | Winter 2013
Taking flight US tour creates new opportunities to benefit Delta clients
John Fisher, Gerar
d Hines, Mick Pa
rry & Kev Holt
Article | Rosie O’Keeffe
riven by the evolving globalisation of agriculture and a growing domination of multinational corporations based primarily out of the United States and Canada, five Delta Agribusiness representatives recently travelled abroad to learn more about innovative opportunities within the farming sector to directly benefit farming clients. “Whilst there’s many reasons the farming community should be concerned about agriculturally generated revenue being transferred overseas, it also means we need to understand what is going on, be more innovative, more efficient, and learn how we can add more value to our clients,” Delta Ag Group Operations Manager John Pattinson said in explaining the reasons behind the recent study tour to the American states of Indiana, Minnesota and Kansas. According to Pattinson, the trip is the first of its kind to be undertaken by Delta Ag staff, and proved invaluable when it came to meeting people from the whole industry chain from large corporate businesses, retailers, farmer co-ops, and growers. “We wanted to look at a few specific ideas that we had previously read about, heard about, or were told about, but we also wanted to get a feel for the markets and what might be coming our way,” he said.
size and on-farm labour more difficult to find and maintain, we are exploring rather than for instance; buying a drum of chemical in our shop and then working out how to then go and apply it, if there’s value to our client doing the whole process on their behalf.” John Fisher commented about the benefits of using liquid fertilizer such as ease of handling and agronomic advantages he further gleaned as part of the tour, however there are still discrepancies when it comes to costs. “The product is very popular and used in great quantity (over there). In the US however, the pricing of the nutrients in the solids and liquids are virtually the same, while in Australia there is a premium price for the liquids,” he said. According to the tour participants, farming industries and landscapes were quite varied among the US regions visited, with Minnesota dominated by corn crops, which is then used to feed on-farm piggeries during snowy winter months as well as “feeding” with the many ethanol plants developed in corn growing areas over the last decade.
“Back in Kansas it’s more typical of this sort of country, typically wheat. When we were there it was just emerging from a particularly long, cold winter with the wheat having been sown in autumn before it snows. It then germinates and comes up to a four-leaf stage then gets four-foot of snow on it which melts and waters the crop, then there’s a bit of rain before harvest in June. Their growing system is quite different by necessity but at “Because of the shortness of the growing season over there things the end of the day they’re doing the same kinds of things,” John happen really quickly. Similarly to Australia, agronomists give Pattinson said. paddock recommendations but that’s where the comparison ends. The retailer then formulates the custom blend based on specific In asking him about where he believes Australia sits on a global recommendations and they apply that on behalf of the grower. scale in embracing new technologies and innovations, Pattinson’s They don’t have retail sites as we know them, agronomists operate view is that the US Crop Insurance Scheme is fundamentally in the paddock and the distributors spread, deliver and apply the changing farming, creating a different attitude when it comes to product in the field. It’s all done on the farmer’s behalf which is a risk. “The scheme underwrites the financial performance of the fundamental difference – one particular business we visited had farmer, so regardless of the reason a farmer may find themselves brand new fertilizer storage of 50,000 tonnes and that business ran in financial hardship whether it be from drought or low grain the whole show,” Pattinson explained. prices for example, they still get a base level of income per year. This scheme is changing their risk profile and they can afford to “This fertilizer and crop spray application is something we want to be more ambitious when it comes to their approach to inputs and explore further and particularly in cases with increases in farm even technology,” he said. All representatives – John Pattinson, Gerard Hines, Mick Parry, Kevin Holt and John Fisher – agree it proved to be an eye opener with the massive scale of rural production and supply, and the differences in the way agribusinesses are involved with farming processes including the bulk distribution of chemicals.
Prospect | Winter 2013
Kev Holt, John Fisher, Brad Reed, Mick Parry & John Pattinson
Dry fertilizer plant control room, Crystal Valley Co-Op, Minnesota
“Australian agriculture in general does a wonderful job in being innovative and trying to manage risk through diversification, better agronomy, and better economic practices, however we’re still operating with risk that fundamentally can’t be offset - the US Crop Insurance Scheme allows for that risk management. “We are now looking at ways we can help our clients manage risk throughout the growing season… that could be through managing price risk for both inputs and outputs, and some of the other technologies in the paddock we can potentially implement as well.” Mick Parry made mention of the stronger understanding he gained of the US Department of Agriculture structure and how the US Crop Insurance Scheme is calculated and priced, and its effects throughout the crop year, which he believes will also have an influence in his grain marketing role. “It is great to have gained an understanding of the discrepancies between the US Department of Agriculture’s Monthly Data and the Quarterly Acreage and Stocks reports. These things will be invaluable to my understanding of the US price complex and therefore will help me to write more insightful information, particularly in the Monthly Outlook papers which go to our subscribers of the premium service,” Mick said. All Delta representatives spoke highly of their visits to two “big business” operations in the Dow Chemical Company’s global headquarters and Koch Industries Inc. “We toured Dow’s research and development facility learning some of the advances they are making in wheat varieties. In particular, the leaps in technology with genetic modification of crops was fascinating, as we heard how they are able to try a thousand different strands of one element of a gene whilst leaving the rest intact,” Mick Parry explained. “It is just an unbelievable facility and to see the amounts of dollars invested, the thousands of scientists, and years of work that goes into bringing new products and technology to the market that helps farmers across the world was fantastic,” Kevin Holt added. As one of the largest privately held companies in the world, the group also agreed Koch Industries proved to be a great
experience from a business management prospective. “They’re the biggest cattle producer in America, one of the biggest oil and fertilizer manufacturers and traders, and just have a different way of thinking which creates opportunities for them and for the people they deal with right through the supply chain, which is all about adding value to the end user. They have aspirations to build upon their existing business in Australia and we think that’s very exciting,” Pattinson commented. Mick Parry also gained some significant insights into the grain sales system with US Midwest up-country storages having been built by grower co-operatives. “The co-ops then employ staff to chase prices and very often buy from their member growers, take a cut, and then on-sell the grain. They also charge for storing grain and actively use futures to price grain on behalf of their members,” he said. “With our grain sales structure in Australia, growers make a larger investment in time and effort making the sales decisions themselves than what is required in the US. That is where Delta Grain is able to add value as we provide independent marketing advice and actively market parcels of grain to chase down better prices. “Our own history of grower co-ops in Australia is littered with disasters, but I suspect that our unreliable weather and subsequent yield variability is mostly responsible for their demise. The US Midwest typically receives 30 to 40 inches of rain per year so their farming systems are geared to high production from smaller holdings, which is an environment which is more supportive of co-operatives in our opinion.” The Delta Ag board members held a strategy meeting in late May to prioritise what new ideas from the tour can be implemented into operations, and how and when they can be brought in to suit Australian markets and conditions. “We are excited about bringing new opportunities to our clients. We know we need to keep challenging ourselves, keep ourselves relevant, and bring more efficiency into our businesses, which we believe will then lead to even more value for our clients,” John Pattinson said. Prospect | Winter 2013
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Prospect|On the Rail
Delta Grain’s pool champ
Meet Graham Martin-Dye. Many southern NSW farmers know him as their grain marketer… But what many will not realise is that Graham is also very well-known for his sporting talents in the pool, including having achieved a Commonwealth Games medal whilst representing his native country of England in 2002 in water polo. Graham reveals to Rosie O’Keeffe how his passion for sport ignited and what influenced his decision to now settle down in the heart of country NSW. u
Article I Rosie O’Keeffe
Photography I Adele Pardy Photography
Delta Ag Grain Marketer SNSW Region
Prospect | Winter 2013
edia scrums were gathered poolside with photographers armed with long lenses scrambling to capture the action of the 1998 World Cup 200-metre men’s freestyle heat featuring British swimming champion Graham Martin-Dye and Australian swimming legend Ian Thorpe. Graham stood on the blocks just two lanes from the man he describes as an “idol” and only held one ambition – to beat “Thorpedo” in at least one lap (the race was eight laps of the 25-metre pool). And he accomplished it. “I just wanted to beat him in one lap of the pool… and I got him on the first lap, but he beat me in the next seven and he was probably taking it easy,” Graham laughs. “I came 13th in that World Cup and he won it. He basically walked in and I was in awe of his awesomeness… and it was just a fantastic experience really.” With Graham’s father John having competed at the Olympic Games in 1960 and 1964 and being the first British man to win the 100, 200 and 400-metre National Championship Titles as well as representing his country in water polo, it is little wonder that Graham was first in the water at three months of age, by two had swam his first lap of the pool, and joined his first swimming club at five years old. He grew up in Watford, located an hour north west of London, swam freestyle in 50, 100, 200 and 400-metre events, and was an age swimming champion and southern England champion as a junior. Whilst his international achievements came from water polo first, having been picked in the English under 18s team at age 14, and going on to be a part of the first British team to qualify for the Junior European Champions swim in Slovakia at 16, Graham made a decision when he was 18 to pursue his Olympic dream and ceased playing water polo to concentrate on swimming. “I trained full-time, I was swimming 60,000 metres a week (60km a week), swimming at 5am in the morning, scraping ice off my car as you do in England and then getting into a cold pool for two hours,” Graham recalls. “What I went through it was quite gruelling, it wasn’t in the best conditions, I had to drive half an hour to get to the pool in the morning, it was intense, it was hard, your pulse rate was between 160 and 200 and your body was physically knackered, you were worn out and then you came home to go to work for the day and then do it all again in the evening. “Training has changed a lot since I was swimming. Going back 15 years swimming wasn’t very ‘professional’ back then, I got a bit of sponsorship but I had to work as well… I did that for four years and made the England Youth Squad for swimming. There are some parts of my training I look back on and think I could have done differently, swimmers are now focused more on land conditioning, diets and that kind of thing. In the UK things have changed a lot, they’ve tried to make it like the Australian Institute of Sport set-up now, there are a lot of Australian coaches over there, we are starting to see a lot of lotteries running and it has changed the way England has approached their sport. We came third in the medal tally in the recent London Olympics and that was because of the way they have changed the funding. The education system has also improved dramatically in encouraging sportspeople into university, and there are a lot more on-campus pools now, whereas 15 or so years ago you could count the number of 50-metre pools on one hand.” The sports have seen Graham travel around the world including many European countries such as Portugal, Barcelona, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Croatia, Serbia, Hungary and Malta, Denmark, Sweden, as well as Canada, Montreal and Toronto, and the United States.
Prospect | Winter 2013
“I went to the Sydney Olympic trials in Sheffield and I only just didn’t make it, I came 6th in the 50-metres and 8th in the 100-metres. It was just that little bit too tough in the end. I gave it my best shot and it was a fantastic experience but I decided to go back to water polo in 2000 at age 22 and trained for the Commonwealth Games. That was the first water polo team England put into the Commonwealth Games, so it was a big thing for the nation really. I had to work a little bit harder because I had left the set-up but my speed was one of my attributes and was a positive for the team and that helped in my selection. I went to intense training camps in Italy and France and I was one of the leading players selected in the starting line-up, and the whole atmosphere of the Commonwealths was unreal, it was a home crowd and the adrenalin was pumping, you’re nervous as you just want to win that medal but the crowd really gees you up!” England lost to Australia in the semi-finals 15-5, so in the fight for third place played against Malta there were two periods of extra time, and Graham scored the winning goal in the first period of extra time at 11-all and then England scored a further two goals to put the team in the lead and scoring them the coveted bronze medal. “When I got that goal the 5000-strong crowd just lifted and erupted, it was unreal. The crowd became the 8th man, it was just fantastic,” Graham reminisces. He says being able to represent his country in two sports is very special and he had different feelings when he achieved success in swimming and in water polo. “I’m a patriotic person, so the feeling was quite overwhelming, when you’re about to play a game and they start playing the national anthem, it is a really great feeling… “When you succeed in swimming you’ve done it all yourself, you’ve got your coach, fellow swimmers, and your parents, but when you win that race or do that personal best time, it’s a totally different feeling to winning a game of water polo or scoring a goal, when you touch that wall first you’ve done it all on your own.
After playing for Balmain for four years (including a backto-back bronze medal win in the National League in 2004 and 2005) Graham travelled again with wife Kelly and they returned to Australia in 2009 where Graham played second division water polo for Balmain before returning to the National League. “In 2010 I was the fittest I’d been in years and played some of my best water polo ever, at 32 years of age, eight years after the Commonwealths. It’s quite amazing how much experience does play a part in water polo. You’re wiser, your instincts are different, and I just had a fantastic season, and actually got best player of the year for Balmain.” After his partner Kelly completed her qualification, being originally from the Southern Highlands, she wanted to return to the country and as her parents owned the pharmacy in Harden, and sister Erin was living in nearby Young, it was the place. Kelly found employment at a local accountancy firm, and Graham followed, with hopes of finding a job in sales and marketing. Whilst scrolling an online employment website, Graham saw there was an opportunity in grain marketing for Delta Ag and has not looked back since landing the role, despite limited agricultural knowledge.
Graham Martin-Dye competing in a water polo match during the 2002 Commonwealth Games
As a younger swimmer I was addicted to winning, that’s what I loved. I’m not arrogant or anything, I didn’t want to be famous but I did thrive on that success and when you’re this swimmer and your fellow colleagues have a respect for you because you’re that good, it’s a great feeling and I enjoyed that as well. Water polo is a totally different feeling, it was good too, you have camaraderie and you go out as a team and bond together, build friendships to last forever, and you’re in support of each other, whereas in swimming, your friends can become your rivals as well because you’re trying to beat them.” Apart from father John being an Olympic swimmer and with a desire to follow in his footsteps, Graham reveals his inspiration was an American swimmer called Matt Biondi who was an idol to him around the age of 10 years. “He was a swimmer in the 1998 Olympics at Seoul. He was my first swimming hero really, and I remember it broke my heart when Australian swimmer Duncan Armstrong beat him in the 200-metre freestyle swim, but he won the 50-metres and 100-metres, he was a fantastic swimmer.” Graham also tells me he had a lot of words of encouragement and philosophies which motivated him, including a poem on his wall, and would listen to dance music as part of warm-ups in preparation for events. After winning the bronze medal at the Commowealth Games in 2002, Graham decided he had achieved what he wanted to accomplish in both sports and was ready to travel to Australia after turning down an offer from Germany to play water polo professionally there. Having travelled South East Asia with a friend and discovering the east coast of Australia in 2003, Graham landed in Sydney and arranged to play water polo with the Balmain Tigers in the National League for the following year. Graham met his wife Kelly (Douglass) through playing with his new club, as Kelly and her twin sister Erin also played water polo for Balmain with ambitions to make the Olympics. Injuries forced them both into retirement from international competition though and Kelly then decided to pursue tertiary studies in accounting.
“I love it. I’ve got the RM Williams boots, RM Williams jeans, I just need the Akubra,” he jokes. “The way of life and cost of living is so much better here. Sydney is such a rat race.” Graham says after two years in his grain marketing role he has some strong goals for the future. “We let farmers know the best price and give them advice by looking at national and international markets, the weather, supply and demand, foreign exchange, and we chat to agronomists for feedback on current conditions and production forecasts. We then give an opinion on whether the grower should hold onto the grain or sell it. At the moment (southern based) farmers are planting and then they can look at forward marketing their grain, some farmers will still have old season grain in warehouse so we find the best opportunities and strategies for them. “I’ve learnt a lot in the past couple of years. I love it, meeting farmers and buyers. I went to the grain conference in Melbourne last year, various presentations and grower meetings. I want to continue to work hard in the job and strive to achieve, set some goals, and try to grow the business, similar to my philosophies in sport.” Graham hasn’t hung up his towel yet, revealing he recently played in the NSW Country Water Polo Championships for the Albury Sharks. “We won the tournament by beating Central Newcastle in the grand final 14-3,” Graham tells me, also adding that he scored four goals in the final for his team and was top scorer for the tournament before being selected to represent NSW in the National Country Championships in May. It would also appear there is another swimming and water polo champion in the making with Graham and Kelly’s six-monthold son Lachlan proving to be quite the water baby. “He was in the pool at six weeks, putting his head under and he’s doing dives now,” Graham says. “Kelly and I have chatted about it and sport is a big part of life but we will support him academically first. No doubt he’ll do reasonably well at swimming though and I’ll be teaching him don’t worry.” One question remains though, and that is whether Lachlan will support England or Australia… Prospect | Winter 2013
Prospect|Viewpoint Weed Management
Tim Condon, Senior Agronomy Consultant, Delta Ag Harden
Being a “WeedSmart” farmer is worthwhile! Effective herbicides are a key tool that underpins the productivity and profitability of Australian cropping systems. The majority of grain growers realise that herbicide resistance is a major threat to the sustainability of these systems and are working hard to manage this issue. Now the whole industry wants to take weed management to another level. WeedSmart is an industry initiative that delivers a virtual toolbox full of practical solutions, useable tools and resources that growers can start using this season to manage weeds and ensure the ongoing viability of their cropping systems. Delta Ag farm consultant, Tim Condon has been involved with this initiative from the outset as a member of the steering committee and is very impressed with the final outcome. “This is the first education and extension program of its kind and has the potential to be a modern solution to an old problem,” Tim says. “Many growers glaze over when the topic of herbicide resistance comes up; they feel they are already well aware of the issue and are working hard to manage it. However it is becoming more of an issue that is starting to bite, with ryegrass and wild radish control failures becoming more common and this is significantly increasing costs, reducing yields, and at the end of the day, reducing profitability. This initiative is all about giving growers and their advisors the incentive and tools to make significant practice changes.”
WeedSmart Videos Tim pointed out that whilst there are a number of excellent brochures and lots of reading material available on the website, there are also some very handy grower case studies and ‘how-to videos’. In these videos growers and researchers explain how they employ a particular weed management technique and how it fits into their farming system. The topics covered in these videos and case studies include: • Manure crops • Windrow burning • Managing fallows in the north • Herbicide application techniques • Managing weeds on fence lines • Fleabane / Barnyard grass • Baling/Chaff carts/Harrington Seed Destructor
I’m talking about bringing out and carefully aiming the “Big Guns” of weed control: • Managing weed seeds at harvest – windrow burning • Brown or Green manure crops • Double or triple knock • Rotating – Everything (herbicides, crops, techniques)
www.weedsmart.org.au Tim outlined the concept of growers and their advisors being able to use the WeedSmart website as a virtual toolbox to access a wide range of information on weed management. “The aim is for the industry to maintain this website as a dynamic resource into the future. Australian research partners, governments, the GRDC, advisors and growers can all contribute to the content and use of this information base to ensure integrated weed management practices remain at the forefront of Australian farming systems.” 28
Prospect | Winter 2013
A great place for growers to start when looking at this issue is the WeedSmart App. This can be downloaded from the App Store or as an online tool from the WeedSmart website.
This App provides a simple tool to gauge herbicide-resistance and weed seed bank management. How it Works: • Answer five questions relating to the farming system on a specific paddock at any given property. • The tool will rate your chances of herbicide resistance assessing how effectively you are managing your weed seed bank. Once you have a paddock’s baseline, we encourage you to test different sustainable weed management techniques to trial what they might do to improve. Email the results to yourself with a description to keep track of different options. You can also email the results to your advisor to encourage further discussion and possible ways to improve management.
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“The use of brown manure crops in our system has helped Australia’s First Bank for Agribusiness. us rotate herbicide chemistry more wisely. Before we grew © 2011 Westpac Banking Corporation ABN 33 007 457 141 AFSL and Australian credit licence 233714. these crops, we were putting too much pressure on the inWRA0302_PRO crop herbicides in our 100 per cent cropping system. Under this system, we can extend the life of existing chemistries and keep weed populations at a low level,” David Gooden says. WRA0302_AGRI_PRESS_Prospect_135x95.indd 1 8/12/11 2:50:40 PM
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Prospect | Winter 2013
Taking Stock Des Makeham
Director/Head of Livestock division, Delta/HLB Livestock Sales
Finishing livestock in focus
he winter months should be good for the finished stock, but they will have to be good. Lamb numbers seem to be backing off and finished cattle will be hard to come by, but I believe that anyone who puts the effort in should be rewarded. Whilst here was a promising start to the season, which unfortunately closed in on us in the south, the only way to get the polish on the stock will be with supplementary feeding. We at Delta Ag are very fortunate to have access to the knowledge of someone like Dr Paul Cusack, Consultant Vet and Nutritionist, who has been of great benefit when I have been trying to help clients. There were some lamb contracts put out earlier in the year which makes me think that even the processors are a little worried about the supply for the winter months. Most of the export processors want to bring the weight of the stock they buy back down. They are doing this by putting penalties on lambs weighing 30kg or more. Of recent years a lot of lambs have been bred by large, late maturing rams which really don’t finish properly until they are in the late 20s to the late 30s in kilograms. It is of my opinion that this season people may want to select rams of smaller stature but carrying more meat. These rams should give you a better chance to either get a lamb off as a sucker or mature early enough to sell as a trade lamb or put weight on and sell as a heavy lamb later on.
I think the same applies when selecting sires for your herd. It is important to look for a sire that can give you the opportunity to sell a finished calf at eight or nine months of age or push out to a heavier weight to suit a feedlot or export processor. There is a saying I follow “highlights don’t make you money it’s what you have in the bank at the end of the year” and sometimes turning stock off as suckers or vealer is the quickest and cheapest return you can get. A final quick note: A trip up north recently made me and the client I had with me envious of the start to the season they’ve had. All we could see was paddock after paddock of feed.
Prospect | Winter 2013
Tim Corcoran, Rural Sales Manager, Delta/HLB
Rural real estate gaining momentum as markets favour the buyer
eflecting on the rural property market this financial year it is safe to say that the market is beginning to gain momentum. Enquiry has increased resulting in spring sales up on 2011 with excellent market results particularly in the mixed farming and cropping country. Since January, confidence has been building, particularly with neighbours expanding and buying country which might not have been as appealing two years ago. A slight gain in confidence as to more and more farmers having consolidated their debt and not wanting to miss out, in a market that has been deemed to favour the buyer. Talks have already begun, with good run off from spring sales last year as to planning for the new financial year, with results largely dependent and influenced by the coming winter and early spring season. It is important to note that planning a successful campaign takes a huge amount of time, so speaking to your sales representative as soon as possible is the key to achieving the best possible result. A well planned, thought out strategy designed specifically for your property is the key. Since the Delta Ag merger with Hamilton Luff Burton & Co. we have been slowly developing and implementing ways our vendors can gain and maximise their market exposure. We have developed new unified ways of advertising in print media to compete better with our competitors on a local and national scale, which you will start to see more and more of in the coming months!
As your selling agent our goal is to utilise and source all contacts in achieving a result as quickly as possible, making it a cost-effective and stress-free transaction. Here at Delta HLB utilising and working closely with the wider Delta group is the ultimate goal in achieving maximum exposure whether it is through weekly email updates or the growing development of social media in the business environment. Our brand Delta HLB covers livestock and property clients as far west as Darlington Point to the Southern Tablelands around Goulburn. With the company’s rapid growth it is pleasing to welcome Jim Guilfoyle to the rural property sector who will operate out of the Yass branch. Jim brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to his role in the company. This will enable the company to service a wider area in the rural property department, particularly in the south eastern part of the state. We look forward to continuing to establish a strong and competitive team working under the Delta HLB banner for the coming year.
Monitoring worm pressure the key managing livestock health
Redevelopment of grain department to benefit growers
Matt Hardy, Branch Manager, Delta Ag Wagga Wagga
ith the onset of the cooler months and the added pressure of spring lambing ewes, worm burdens can impact greatly on production. Monitoring worm burdens during this period can help producers manage production loss through the use of Faecal Egg Counts (FEC). There are now numerous facilities that conduct FEC’s and producers are now spoilt for choice, and have better and quicker results than ever before. By monitoring worm pressure through FEC’s, producers can better plan effective worm treatments and timing to minimise any loss. The old treatment regime of two summer and one winter drench (in sheep) is now less practised and there has been a big move to drench when worm numbers are at levels that constitute treatment.
Mick Parry, General Manager, Delta Grain Marketing
elta Grain Marketing has gone through some changes over the past few months, and we are excited about the direction we are taking and look forward to providing great service to clients again this cropping season. Delta Grain provides independent advisory and broking services for cereals, oilseeds, pulses and cotton. We don’t trade grain… we simply find you the best opportunities, every trade. We have recently employed some key staff who bring a great deal of grain and cotton experience to our Northern business in particular, but who also add a depth of knowledge to the group. Brad Taylor from Dalby in Queensland heads up our business from central Queensland to the Darling Downs. Brad was Regional Accumulation Manager at GrainCorp and has been working in the grain industry for 25 years bringing a wealth of experience, and will be a great asset to our clients. Tom Vanzella has joined the Armidale office, after spending seven years as a sorghum, barley and wheat trader, and will be instrumental in continuing our quality broking services across north western NSW (particularly through our Narrabri and Burren Junction stores) and the Liverpool Plains. Greg Kaynes has also joined the Armidale office after managing sales across Northern Australia for a major fertilizer manufacturer. Greg is assisting our broking operations and is working with clients in the Central West through to our Trangie branch – JJA Delta.
The small cost involved in conducting an FEC can return dividends through production gains, reducing worm egg outputs onto pastures, timing treatments to maximise effectiveness, which will help in managing resistance in the fact that you may not need to treat. The other benefit of utilising an FEC is that producers can request a culture to be conducted, which means, that the lab will grow the eggs out and report on the mix of worm species that is present. This is very important information to have as this will also help in the decision of what effective drench to use and tailor the drench to treat the species present. This has been proven over the last couple of seasons as we have seen Barbers Pole Worm persist well into the winter months, and treatments have been selected accordingly. For those producers in Fluke areas an FEC will also indicate if Fluke are present if requested. Fluke monitoring and control will also be on top of many producers radars this year as the dry summer and autumn periods have seen a reduction in feed. As feed sources tighten, livestock will graze in the wetter areas such as swamps and creeks where Fluke are present and producers must keep watch of clinical signs such as Bottle Jaw and loss of weight gain. Last year Fluke was seen in areas never seen before such as around Lockhart in southern NSW. Due to the extensive flooding in this region, producers were seeing the effects of Liver Fluke in livestock and were returning positive test results. Although a hot dry summer will help in reducing the numbers of Fluke on the pastures, this year will be vital in cleaning up any remaining fluke present in these areas.
It is business as usual with the Harden team of Graham Martin-Dye and Ryan Simpson continuing to provide smart, independent grain broking, and well supported by Di Miller and newly appointed Meg Delyall. Similarly, our Lockhart branch is ably serviced by Shane Trotter and Elissa Strong who are working hard to expand our grain broking services in the region. If you would like one of our team to visit you in order to explain how we can help in marketing your crops, as well as provide analysis and advice on local values, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time.
Prospect | Winter 2013
Kevin Holt, Delta Ag Procurement Manager
New drench to delay resistance
heep producers are being encouraged to take a step up from a traditional single active drench to Sequel, a new dual action drench that is set to delay the development of resistance. “Right now it’s not at all uncommon for some single active drenches to have no practical impact on worms at all: you may effectively be pouring money down the drain,” Ancare Technical and Strategic Projects Manager Mark Doherty said. “Sequel’s ready-to-use combination of abamectin and levamisole makes it an effective dual combination for use in drench programs in the place of a single active drench. “It is a cost-effective way of achieving high efficacy, thereby maximising production and returns from your livestock. “Rather than relying on one active ingredient alone, Sequel allows producers to continue to benefit from all of the attributes of abamectin – a fast acting, broad spectrum ML that treats inhibited stages of roundworms – with the added potency of levamisole, which has good efficacy against Barbers Pole Worm.” Sequel has an easy flow formulation that goes through ordinary drench guns. The dose rate of 1ml/5kg bodyweight has the same dose rate as traditional drenches. Ancare’s Marketing Manager Jack Bree said trials show Sequel has had very good efficacy against all major internal sheep parasites, and has repeatedly outperformed single active drenches in the same trials. Sequel is available in five-litre backpacks and 15-litre drums.
eNtrench Nitrogen Stabiliser to boost optimum yield potential A new product to protect early season nitrogen and to maximise the amount of nitrogen in the root zone to optimise yield and quality was recently launched into the Australian grain growing market. “The greatest benefit of applying eNtrench will be seen in seasons with average to wet winters and springs where nitrate losses due to leaching and/or de-nitrification will be the highest, however, we saw in 2012, that even in low rainfall environments, strong gross margin improvements can still be achieved,” Dow AgroSciences Business Manager for Cereal Products Dan Dixon said. Leaching and de-nitrification leads to significant nitrogen loss across many areas of the Australian grain growing belt. These processes only happen to the nitrate form of nitrogen and only occur after significant rainfall events. According to a recent Dow AgroSciences media release, advances in formulation technology has allowed the development of eNtrench Nitrogen Stabiliser. This formulation is designed to be mixed with commonly applied nitrogen sources, allowing for simple application within existing agricultural processes. Early season application of eNtrench is critical to maximise wheat development. By applying eNtrench at seeding (mixed with liquid fertilizer or applied in the same seeding zone as granular fertilizer) or as an early postemergent application with a liquid nitrogen product, eNtrench will ensure that there is an available and stable source of nitrogen for the crop at key growth stages. eNtrench trials conducted over the past two years in Australia have seen yield increases of over 30 per cent reported in some very nitrogen responsive sites, however most commercial evaluation sites have seen yield increases ranging from zero (in dry areas) to 20 per cent. Grain quality improvements have also been observed with protein levels increasing by more than a percentage point in some sites. Increases in yield and protein percentages are translating into significant gross margin improvements per hectare.
Prospect | Winter 2013
Business Solutions Manager Youngtel Pty Ltd T/A Telstra stores Young, Parkes, and Macquarie Street, Dubbo
Approved Next G Repeater to boost coverage If you are struggling to use your mobile phone or internet service in your home or office which is tied to a patch lead or cradle, it may become a thing of the past with a new product available at Youngtel Solutions. We now supply and install an Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and Telstra approved Next G repeater. In the past any repeater used to boost mobile phone coverage was banned with some users prosecuted for illegally using the devices which then caused interference to other users. Our device is strictly controlled for power though and is designed not to impact other users of mobile networks within its vicinity. There is also a control on the sale and installation of the devices which need to be applied with details recorded for Telstra and/or the actual distributor should future issues arise. Setting up the device is quite simple but most of our customers have so far opted for us to professionally install the device with a High Gain antenna to ensure the best possible coverage and internet speed. You place the “Base” unit where it gets the best mobile reception (with an antenna if necessary) and then place
the “Broadcast” unit in a suitable position to provide the most coverage or where you need the coverage. We have units providing mobile coverage up to 30 metres away from the broadcast unit and interestingly it has also boosted coverage up to 800 metres away where the mobile phone was connected to a high gain antenna. For example, one we installed recently had no coverage however the area was showing on our coverage maps that it should work with an antenna. The customer engaged us to do a site survey first to find coverage and determine if it was enough to warrant the cost of buying and installing an antenna and repeater. It was, so we installed an antenna 20 metres off the ground and now the customer gets mobile and internet coverage for the first time. The units are only for use with the Telstra Next G 3G850Mhz network and they will not connect to the 4G network. They have an SMA type connector on the bottom for connecting an antenna. Most antennas are fitted with an FME type connector so an adaptor may be required.
For more information and to access the application form please visit: www.youngtel.com.au email: email@example.com
L/R – Broadcast Unit (Small) - Receiver Unit (Large) Prospect | Winter 2013
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Around the Traps Growers Pre-Crop Meeting Grenfell 9 April 2013
Photography: Justine McGregor
James Gibson, John Gibson, Darryl Smith, John Johnson & Ben Armstrong
Colin Johnson, Anthony Dixon & Warren Johnson
Lachlan Caldwell, Rob Johnson, Andrew Baker, Daniel Martin, Leo Wilder & Graeme Wilder
James Ingrey & Jim Laycock
Trevor Knight, Jarrod Amery & Garry Knight
David Walker, Craig Eppelstun & Ken Edwards
Polly Eppelstun, Ryan Simpson, Graham Martin-Dye & Jarrod Amery
Anthony Edwards, Allan Umbers & Lachlan Caldwell
Darryl Smith, Rob McElland, Paul Tognetti, Ron McElland & Robert Grimm
Maurice Simpson & Robert Taylor
Prospect | Winter 2013
Grenfell Picnic Races Grenfell 20 April 2013
Photography: Jennifer Napier
Emily Nowlan & Alexander Nowlan
Robert McLelland, Anthony Wilson, Margie Johnson & Warren Lander
Chelsea Lander, Lisa Schaefer, Sarah & Clementine Ryan
Polly Eppelstun, Anthony Dixon, Ben & Sarah Armstrong
Robert Johnson, Sally Brakell & Gabby Capra
Anthony Dixon, Lucy Hoolihan, Olivia Beasley & Erin Ryan
Gabrielle Cusack, Lucy Kemp-Nowlan, Fiona Kemp, Angela McGann & Christine Cuddihy
Erin Ryan, Lucy Hoolihan, Micheal & Emma Duval & Anthony Dixon
Erin Ryan, Lucy Hoolihan, Catia Nowlan, Jan Myers & Michael Yates
Sarah Beaumount, Jan Myers, Zel Barker & Robbie Oliver
Gabrielle Cusack, Jannette Keogh & Kellie Bembrick
Linda Stevens, Sally Brakell, Susie Taylor & Mandy Taylor
Lynne Peterson, Catia Nowlan, Susie & Saskia McLelland
Prospect | Winter 2013
Growers Pre-Crop Meeting Yerong Creek 26 March 2013
Photography: Rosie O’Keeffe
Rolf Malmo & Steven McRorie
Dan Kimber & Dave Walker
Heidi Gooden, Glenn Calverley & Warwick Nightingale
Milton Kennedy & Luxton Walker
Duncan McRorie & Cameron Male
Andrew Driscoll, Michael Mazzocchi, Pete McRorie & Michael Molloy
“i usE zolvix BEcausE it Prolongs thE lifE of all thE othEr drEnchEs on this ProPErty” . tim BowEr
kills >99.9% s of worm 1
zEro rEsistancE zolvix®. worms don’t stand a chancE. “You could lose 50% of your production due to the impact of worms. To combat against resistance, you have to rotate your drenches. I will be using ZOLVIX in my rotation with confidence.
We tested fourteen days after using ZOLVIX onto this new country and it was zero zero all the way, it was very good. With ZOLVIX you get better production, more cut per head, it’s all plus, plus! We are very happy with it and it’s money well spent. ZOLVIX definitely works.” • Kills ›99.9% of worms,1 even resistant worms. • Prolongs the lifespan of older drenches.2 • Boosts farm productivity.3 www.zolvix.com
• Revolutionary, easy to use drenching system. • Impressive safety profile.
EvEry flock, EvEry yEar
References 1. Kills >99.9% of barbers pole, small brown stomach and black scour worms. A pooled analysis of the efficacy of monepantel, an amino-acetonitrile derivative against gastrointestinal nematodes of sheep. Hosking et al., Parasitol Res (2010), 106: 529-532. 2. Minimising the development of anthelmintic resistance, and optimising the use of the novel anthelmintic monepantel, for the sustainable control of nematode parasites in Australian sheep grazing systems. R.J. Dobson et al., AVJ (2011), Vol. 89, No 5. 3. The production costs of anthelmintic resistance in sheep managed within a monthly preventive drench programme. Sutherland et al., Vet Para(2010), 171:300-304. ZOLVIX contains 25 g/L monepantel, a member of the Amino-Acetonitrile Derivative (AAD) class of anthelmintics. ZOLVIX® is a registered trademark and OPTIMUM™ is a trademark of Novartis AG, Basel, Switzerland. For full product details contact NOVARTIS CUSTOMER ADVISORY LINE on 1800 633 768 TOLL FREE between 8.30am and 5.30pm E.S.T. Monday to Friday. Novartis Animal Health Australasia Pty Limited, ACN 076 745 198, 54 Waterloo Road, North Ryde NSW 2113.
Prospect | Winter 2013
On the Radar 17 – 19 June
2013 Australian Summer Grains Conference Gold Coast The conference brings together the sorghum, maize, sunflower, soybean and mungbean industries to discuss summer grains opportunities and challenges. The event will include presentations from leading scientists and marketers from overseas and within Australia, and the primary audience will be farmers, consultants, agronomists and scientists. The topics will include biosecurity, herbicide resistance, commodity marketing, and crop management in variable climates. www.australiansummergrains.com.au
Pacific Beef Expo Casino The event will have a range of trade displays, seminars/workshops, products/equipment and machinery targeted at beef producers. www.mla.com.au
26 – 28 June
Digital Rural Futures Conference Armidale Digital Rural Futures is a national forum to exchange ideas and provide updates on the opportunities and challenges with smart technology (sensors, farend control and autonomous systems), data and information management including cloud-based services, sharing and security, remote surveys and web-supported smart phone applications and smart services, for agriculture and environmental production. This will include application cases including precision agriculture, farm to customer retail, teleworking, telehealth, emergency and environmental risk management. www.une.edu.au/smart
Graham Centre Annual Sheep Field Day Wagga Wagga The program will include several short presentations followed by a series of workshops. www.csu.edu.au/research/grahamcentre
Narrabri PROFarm Course – Quad Bike Handling A course for those wanting to develop their skills in the safe use of four-wheel motorbikes. The course will assist participants to safely and effectively operate four-wheeled motorbikes and to carry out routine checks and maintenance. www.dpi.nsw.gov.au
9 – 11 July
Ag-Grow Field Days Emerald Featuring 1500 manufacturers and distributors of mining and agricultural products and services, AgGrow is expected to attract more than 28,000 visitors from broadacre to horticulture farmers. www.aggrow.com.au
12 – 13 July
Mudgee Small Farm Field Days Mudgee Delivering a range of free education seminars, talks and displays to complement commercial exhibitors, the 2013 event will feature agricultural exhibits and sessions, a ladies fashion pavilion, and sheep dog trials. www.arec.com.au
NSW Farmers’ Annual Conference Chatswood The annual conference will determine the association’s policy positioning for the next 12 months, elect office bearers and allow members of the association the opportunity to network with their peers. www.nswfarmers.org.au/about-us/annual-conference
19 – 20 July
The Australian Sheep and Wool Show Bendigo Since 1877, the Sheep Show has been showcasing Australia’s top woolgrowers and prime lamb producers and now attracts thousands of fans of woollen fashion, food and fibre. www.sheepshow.com
29 – 31 July
Australian Grains Industry Conference Melbourne The conference will comprise a program to address cuttingedge issues in evolving grain markets and a trade show. The event is aimed at any organisation involved in the production, logistics and marketing of grain and supporting services. www.ausgrainsconf.com
GRDC Research Update for Growers Forbes The event is about providing quality information on topical and practical issues relevant to the productivity and profitability of grain enterprises. www.orm.com.au
Graham Centre, Annual Beef Field Day Wagga Wagga The program will include several short presentations followed by a series of workshops. www.csu.edu.au/research/grahamcentre
PROFarm course – Safe Tractor Operation and Maintenance Wagga Wagga This course covers the safe operation of tractors with and without attachments, and basic maintenance. www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/agriculture/profarm
20 – 22 August
Commonwealth Bank Agquip Field Days Gunnedah Staged over three days at Gunnedah, the event provides professionals on the land with comprehensive access to the latest machinery, equipment and services. www.farmonline.com.au/events/agquip Prospect | Winter 2013
everything under der the Cereal Sun
For further information please call the Syngenta Technical Product Advice Line on 1800 067 108 or visit our website at www.syngenta.com.au. The information contained in this brochure is believed to be accurate. No responsibility is accepted in respect of this information, save those non-excludable conditions implied by any Federal or State legislation or law of a Territory. 速 Registered trademark of a Syngenta Group Company. *Trademark. Cruiser Opti, Vibrance, Cogito and Moddus Evo are not currently registered. Registration is pending from the APVMA. AD12/522