Food at Rock-bottom prices is NOT a birthright

Whilst in Lockhart for the Spirit of the Land yearly celebration I had an opportunity to frock and fascinate up and attend the Lockhart Picnic Races. BTW no shortage of men and women in the Riverina who would do high fashion proud at Flemington

After hearing a couple of male farmers I was introduced to say, when asked where their partner was “She’s working so I can spend it” Acknowledging upfront the phrase is said in jest it made me cringe. It’s time for it to be no longer the norm that too often female partners of farmers have no personal identity other than being the bread winner so the farm can put bread on other people’s tables.

THE REAL COST OF CHEAP FOOD

Source 

As one woman who spent 35 years of her life doing this it isn’t much fun. It’s only in the last ten years when I realised it was time to find my personal identity, give my life a sense of meaning that I could empower others to ensure safe and healthy food is truly valued by everyone in this country. It well beyond time to debunk the myth ‘food at rock-bottom prices is a birthright’ supermarket duopolies happily perpetuate.  As this article from Fresh Agenda reminds us Food doesn’t come Cheap

Rehanded’s Managing Director Jim Gall is so right when he says

If Australian agriculture is to thrive, it needs talented men and women. Businesses, governments and representative bodies that accommodate flexible career pathways and an open mind, may just attract some of the best business, science, engineering and marketing brains in the world, and therefore provide Australian produced food and fibre with a distinct and sustainable brand and business advantage.

Now I must declare my interest here, I employ women in agribusiness …. . They are often the most talented creative and strategic minds in the business. I also have a farm that is successfully run by my wife ……..

So why do I care? Well I also have two daughters and if one day they choose to pursue a career in agriculture, I would like to think they would be afforded the same opportunities I have.

Jim Gall .  From the Back Block to the Boardroom

Like Jim, I too am very lucky to be able to identify and nurture and support some of the most talented, creative and strategic, bright young minds in agriculture today through the Young Farming Champions program. More than 60% of this team are women and none of them have any intentions of pursuing careers that see them as the off farm Money Tree diversification strategy that supports the farm. They all want an innovative, rewarding, dynamic,exciting and profitable agriculture sector that they play an active role in creating and sustaining

And that means disrupting the way agriculture traditionally thinks, talks and acts.

It means agriculture not just talking about working together to achieve more innovative solutions and better results. It means walking the talk.

It means taking a collaborative approach to raising agricultural awareness, leadership development, community engagement and inspiring the next generation’s best and brightest to seek careers in the agriculture sector.

It means forging partnerships to identify, prepare and support our emerging leaders.

It means creating the right environment for our young people and giving them the skills to thrive.

The Australian Young Farmer of the Year Anika Molesworth is just one of many examples of what happens when you expose bright and creative and innovative young minds in agriculture to some of Australia’s finest communication, marketing and professional development experts as well as the diverse networks necessary to support them.

The voice of the collective can be so much stronger than working alone

When we come together under a common mission with shared values truly extraordinary achievements can be made…

Anika Molesworth Australian Young Farmer of the Year

Listen to more of what this wonderful young woman has to say here

Author: Lynne Strong

I am a 6th generation farmer who loves surrounding myself with optimistic, courageous people who believe in inclusion, diversity and equality and embrace the power of collaboration. I am the founder of Picture You in Agriculture. Our team design and deliver programs that inspire pride in Australian agriculture and support young people to thrive in business and life

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