Home' Grower : May 2012 Contents The South Australian Grower -- May 2012
Skills' development opportunity
FRESH produce farmers have the
opportunity to develop their
business skills through the
Rabobank Executive Development
Now in 13th year, the program brings
together leading Australian and New
Zealand farmers from a range of
Announcing the opening of
applications for the 2012 intake of the
Executive Development Program,
Rabobank group executive Neil Dobbin
said the essence of the program has
always been to focus more on the
increasingly important commercial and
strategic issues that are relevant to
The program introduces participants
to the latest practices in business
management; leadership, strategy and
planning, finance, human resources,
value chain management and marketing,
and how these can be directly applied to
their farm businesses.
"We need to invest in those
capabilities to manage an inevitably
difficult and volatile business -- that's
what successful agribusiness
management is about," Mr Dobbin said.
"When thinking seriously about the
future success of farm businesses, it's
important to invest in the most
important resource of the business - the
Rabobank has appointed Angus Taylor
as program director of the program.
He has accepted the directorship role
following Dr John Morris' retirement
after 13 successful years as program
director since its inception in 1999.
Mr Taylor said the reality is that
farming has been changing to take on a
much more commercial focus than ever
before, requiring today's farmers to
think more strategically about how they
run their businesses.
"Farm operations are getting bigger,
more commercial and business-focused,
with more employees and contractors
working for them than ever before. The
focus is moving beyond just land and
water, to people skills and business
capabilities and this changes the nature of
the game," he said.
Applications for program are open
until Friday, June 1, with only 36
applicants accepted from across a range
of commodities and geographical
locations in Australia and New Zealand.
Held in Sydney, the first module runs
from August 19-24 with the second
module taking place in July of next year.
Details: www.rabobank.com.au or contact
Rabobank business programs manager Nerida
Sweetapple on 02 8115 4139 or email
Rabobank has appointed Angus Taylor
as director of the program
Carbon calculation made easy
VEGETABLE growers can calculate their carbon footprint
for free, thanks to the online Vegie Carbon Calculator.
The website is intended to assist the industry account
for on-farm greenhouse gas emissions.
The website has two elements:
• A vegetable specific carbon calculator. This
component of the website was funded by
Australian vegetable growers through Horticulture
• An industry carbon education, information
products and extension systems to prepare the
vegetable industry for operating in a carbon
constrained world. This component was funded by
Woolworths and HAL.
Training information, including the Understanding
Carbon manual is available from the training section
of the website.
A video presentation of the manual is also available
in the training section.
The Vegetable Carbon Calculator will help growers to
identify their on-farm carbon footprint and will
allocate this footprint to specific crops or crop
categories. The calculator identifies carbon
emissions associated with fertiliser use, electricity,
fuel, waste, refrigerants and land use change.
To make the most of the calculator, users should
have electricity bills/meter records for the reporting
year, fuel bills/receipts for the reporting year (natural
gas, petrol, diesel, LPG, wood), records of waste
processed on-farm for the reporting year, records of
fertiliser useage for the reporting year and service
documents for on-site cold rooms or industrial
freezers for the reporting year.
• Visit: www.vegiecarbontool.com.au.
Support for GrowSmart award
THE SA Citrus Board has agreed to support the PICSE
GrowSmart Science Investigation Awards in August
2012 by sponsoring one of the student award prizes.
The program is essential to the industry because it
will help address the need for graduates with
technical training to take up employment in citrus
businesses in the Riverland. Students who enter are
required to conduct a scientific investigation and
present the results at the award night. The program is
important to Riverland students as it encourages
curiosity in science, recognizes outstanding projects,
facilitates team work and promotes good
communication. The program aims to attract
scientific thinkers to take up studies in primary
industries and to provide students with mentoring
options. The Board has also agreed to help with
judging and assistance with industry placements.
Overall, the program aims to address recent concerns
that rural industries in SA are unable to attract
trained personnel. The Riverland event will be on
Wednesday, August 22, at the Loxton High School.
Focus increasingly on commercial
and strategic issues
Farm operations getting bigger,
more business orientated
Employees, contractors in demand
Jonathan Eccles with this year's
junior judge winner, Sarah Watson.
South Australian potatoes were a highlight
at the fruit and vegetable competition at
the 2012 Royal Easter Show in Sydney.
Potatoes South Australia Chief Executive
Officer Jonathan Eccles officiated in the
junior judging for fruit and vegetables.
This year's competition involved a range
of potato varieties grown in South
"Not only has South Australia become
one of Australia's largest potato-producing
States thanks to an excellent climate and
environment, but it is the largest producer
of fresh market potatoes," Mr Eccles said.
"It is appropriate that spuds from South
Australia feature at Australia's largest
The competition involves high school
students judging various fruits and
vegetables as close as possible to how Mr
Eccles has judged them.
This year's winner was Sarah Watson,
from Elizabeth Macarthur High School, just
Mr Eccles used the event to promote
South Australian potatoes and show how
the industry was introducing new varieties
to revitalise the fresh potato market.
Mr Eccles said every opportunity needed
to be used to promote horticulture as an
exciting career prospect for young people.
"An event such as junior judging at the
Easter Show is just one way of promoting
the industry," he said.
Details: email@example.com or 0407 242
Potatoes big hit at Sydney Royal
Ph: (03) 6498 6800 Fax: (03) 6427 0801 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Fraser Mearns -- Harvest Moon, Forth, TA
Phillip Beswick -- Farmer, Sisters Creek, Tasmania
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