2018 Australian Grain Leaders Program gives young emerging leaders invaluable industry exposure

Eleven young Australian farmers are hard at work completing their industry projects as part of GrainGrowers’ 2018 Australian Grain Leaders Program (AGLP).

GrainGrowers’ CEO David McKeon said the participants had displayed an overwhelming passion for their own personal and professional development throughout the AGLP and it had been a pleasure watching them develop their knowledge and skills.

“We look forward to hearing about the results of their projects at their graduation from the program in October,” Mr McKeon said.

Participants from across Australia have been working on their individual leadership goals and industry projects with the guidance of the AGLP Program Facilitator, RuralScope’s Jo Eady throughout the last nine months. The AGLP integrates skill development, industry engagement and project work to facilitate development and create an alumni of proven individuals for the future leadership of the Australian grains industry. Participants have now completed two of three face-to-face components of the program and will graduate at GrainGrowers’ 60th Anniversary Dinner in Dubbo on October 17.

The group had the opportunity to discuss key issues affecting grain farmers with GrainGrowers’ National Policy Group members and other industry leaders such as the National Farmers Federation in Canberra in February. Issues included research to improve grain transportation efficiencies, and working on a consistent national Class 1 Notice for the movement of agricultural vehicles on public roads.

As part of the program, participants were involved in GrainGrowers’ premier conference for under 35s, Innovation Generation, having the opportunity to speak and moderate a panel session in front of 170 young agricultural enthusiasts. They also visited several farming enterprises in different regions to broaden their knowledge of different farming systems nationally.

Participants spent time working on an individual industry or on farm-based project. Some of the projects include:

Western Region

Nick Panizza, from Williams, WA has constructed a template to undertake an in-depth analysis of on farm constraints to identify ways to improve business management. Nick says the program has been a great opportunity for him to get outside his own farm business and broaden his thinking.

“A key take-out from the program has been that I’m now devoting more time to working on my business, rather than in the business,” said Nick.

Southern Region

Veronica Terry, from Dairy Plains, TAS has been conducting research into superannuation investment in agriculture. Veronica has met with chief investment officers in the top four largest superannuation funds in Australia, leading economists and agricultural industry players.

Since participating in the program, Veronica is considering extending her experience in corporate agriculture, based on her positive experience.

“I believe that there are many opportunities for family farms, such as ours, to connect with corporate agriculture and strengthen their financial and environmental returns in the process. The program has given me the opportunity to network with various other professionals in the agricultural industry,” said Veronica.

Northern Region

Henry Moxham, from Coonamble, NSW is focused on creating an agricultural asset management business and learning how to attract off farm investors. So far, he has established a template for investment in agricultural asset management and is working on how to present an investment pitch.

“I’ve really enjoyed meeting a diverse group of growers and advisors in the program and learning from their experiences. I’ve gained personal and professional development through AGLP and Jo Eady, the Program Facilitator has been a great mentor,” said Henry.

The Australian Grain Leaders Program (AGLP) is a national leadership program designed specifically for young Australian emerging leaders in the grains industry. The program has been running for ten years and over that time, up and coming participants have come through the program and now hold senior leadership positions across the Australian grains industry.

For more information including the profiles of each of this year’s participants, click here.