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Hi everyone, I’m Kate Gunn. Our family operates a rain-fed farming business on the Liverpool Plains with a mix of flat and sloping country. Our farming system is typically a long fallow rotation with wheat and sorghum being pillar crops, and crops including canola, chickpeas, barley and cotton incorporated to manage agronomic issues and take advantage of marketing opportunities. We also run a beef cattle herd alongside our cropping operation.

Our average rainfall is 600mm and for 2024 the running tally is 337mm. The season is looking very optimistic for winter crops, with early crops off to a cracking start and good rain falling this week.We have 1770ha of wheat and 1200ha of barley currently in and away, showing good potential.

The wet conditions are slowing down our final rounds of top dressing and in crop sprays – but we are certainly not complaining! Disease looks like it might be a challenge this year along with the usual risk portfolio of weed resistance, input volatility of price and supply, interest rates and sluggish commodity markets.

The chances for a wet spring are a huge opportunity for both the current winter crop and the upcoming 24/25 summer crop plant going in on a good moisture profile, which is essential to getting crops through increasingly hot summers. Despite all the challenges, it’s still a great time to be an Aussie grain grower and part of the ag industry. The future is bright, and we hope to be able instil this sense of opportunity in the younger generation – obviously along with the necessary level of resilience!