New Nuffield Fellows expected to grow and strengthen Australian agriculture

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Nineteen emerging leaders in Australian agriculture have been awarded prestigious 2023 Nuffield Fellowships to study topics as diverse as productivity, farmer mental health and rural education.

For the first time, Nuffield Australia awarded scholarships to more women than men this year.

Fellows will travel to Australia and overseas to study innovative ideas, techniques and systems that will benefit their businesses and the wider agricultural industry.

Thanks to generous investors, each 2023 scholar receives a $30,000 scholarship to invest in travel and research. They will visit, learn and collaborate with some of the world’s leading agricultural companies and research institutions.

Jodie Redcliffe, CEO of Nuffield Australia and 2013 Fellow, says the scholarships allow producers to learn about farming systems and innovations that can be a game-changer for Australian agriculture.

“Nuffield Australia opens up the world to farmers who are brave enough to step out of their comfort zone,” says Jodie.

“A global perspective allows them to learn, compete and grow.”

The Nuffield Scholars were announced at the annual Nuffield Australia Awards Night and Conference, currently being held in Tamworth, NSW.

“We are so excited about this cohort of Nuffield Scholars. They come from a wide range of industries – cropping, fishing, ranching and tree nuts – and we have every state and territory represented,” says Jodie.

She says this group will tackle a range of issues that impact Australian agriculture. Some of these topics are industry-specific and others are industry-wide.

“For example, Aimee Snowden is already using LEGO® to inspire people’s interest in agriculture and spark interest in our diverse industry, through her business Little BRICK Pastoral. She plans to explore agricultural education models that promote immersive experiences and engage inquisitive minds.

“And there is Sarah Crosthwaite, dairy farmer and mental health counselor from Victoria. She will explore how different agricultural sectors around the world support the mental health of their producers, especially in a changing climate.

“From Western Australia, Rebecca Kelly seeks to find or develop resources to help farmers in negotiations with energy companies, for example if they want to explore or extract resources from their land.

“All of our researchers address topics important to the sustainability of the industry they love, whether it’s optimizing productivity, meeting market demands, improving biosecurity, reducing chemical inputs, adapting climate change or improving animal welfare.”

2023 Nuffield Scholars

queensland

  • Jarrod Cook of Stamford, has been awarded the Northern Pastoral Scholarship, collectively supported by the Australian Agricultural Company (AACo), Consolidated Pastoral Company (CPC), Elders and S. Kidman & Co. Jarrod will study best methods to prepare cattle for feedlot entry to optimize performance.
  • Tessa Dimond of St George. Supported by GrainCorp, Tessa will gain a global perspective on how Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) affect Australian grain prices and access to international markets.
  • Hughenden’s Regan Lynch. Supported by Animal Health Australia and Plant Health Australia, Regan will explore ways to improve on-farm biosecurity attitudes and practices in the northern Australian beef industry.
  • Aimee Snowden currently works in Rockhampton, but hails from a family farm in southern New South Wales. Supported by AgriFutures Australia, she will explore agricultural education models that promote immersive experiences and engage inquisitive minds.
  • Miriam Villen King of Bargara. Supported by the Public Sector Pensions Investment Board (PSP Investments), Miriam will investigate sustainable approaches to nut farming in Australia.

New South Wales

  • Fiona Aveyard of Peak Hill. Supported by the RAS Foundation (NSW), Fiona will explore how to embed value-added opportunities in the red meat industry.
  • Mungindi’s Tim Houston. Supported by Cotton Australia and the Cotton Research & Development Corporation, Tim will research how to sustainably shift land from grazing to farming, including cotton.
  • Barmedman’s Nicole Logg. Supported by Australian Wool Innovation, Nicole will investigate nutritional options to supplement sheep effectively.
  • Jackie Morrison of McLeans Ridges. Supported by AgriFutures Australia, Jackie will study integrated pest management and how it can support Australian industry‘s fight against the Varroa destructor mite.

Western Australia

  • Daniel Dempster of Goomalling. Supported by Grains Research and Development Corporation, Daniel will explore the economic implications of adopting agricultural practices that focus on full soil cover, minimal soil disturbance, high plant species diversity, and the incorporation of livestock.
  • Mingnew’s Rebecca Kelly. Supported by CBH Group, Rebecca will explore ways to help farmers in negotiations with energy companies, for example if they want to explore or extract resources from their land.
  • Alys McKeough of Carnarvon. Supported by Meat & Livestock Australia, Alys will explore emerging technologies to improve connectivity across the property, which could increase efficiency and productivity while improving range conditions in the pastoral industry.

southern australia

  • Alexander Copper of Auburn. Supported by Nuffield South Australia, Alexander will study drought-tolerant wine varieties that could be introduced to Australia.
  • Sammy McIntyre of Parawa. Supported by Rabobank, Sammy will study how enriching feedlot environments to encourage natural behaviors can benefit the sheep industry.

Tasmania

  • Iain Field of Copping. Supported by the University of Tasmania and JM Roberts Charitable Trust, Iain will study how to increase ecological literacy and biodiversity on farms for sustainability.
  • Joana Ferreira Mendes from Geeveston. Supported by the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, Joana will travel to major aquaculture producing countries and bring back ideas and innovations to help the Australian industry grow fish more sustainably.

North territory

  • Jodie Mitchell of Newcastle Waters. Supported by the Northern Territory Government and ANZ Bank, Jodie will explore ways to improve the rearing of young cattle in northern/subtropical environments.

Victoria

  • Sarah Crosthwaite from Kergunyah South. Supported by the Gardiner Foundation, Sarah will study how different agricultural sectors around the world are supporting the mental health of their producers, especially in a changing climate.

LAW

Nuffield Australia and CSIRO have an established partnership that fosters understanding between Australian scientific research and our agriculture industry. In 2023, Dr Vivien (Viv) Rolland will be the sixth CSIRO scientist to participate in two key strands of the Nuffield programme: the Contemporary Scholars Conference (CSC) and the Global Focus Program (GFP).

Highlights:

– Tonight, Nuffield Australia announces its 19 new scholarship recipients.

– They are farmers, fishermen and a scientist with a passion for agriculture.

– For the first time, Nuffield Australia awarded scholarships to more women than men this year.

– Each fellowship includes a $30,000 grant for recipients to invest in worldwide travel and research. This allows them to bring home innovative ideas, techniques and systems to benefit their business and industry.

About Us:

Nuffield Australia has supported Australian agriculture for over 70 years. Nuffield Australia awards scholarships annually to primary producers and those working in closely related industries, to support personal development and build industry capacity. A Nuffield Fellowship allows Australian producers to interact with leading and innovative companies around the world to find ideas and forge connections that improve our food and fiber value chains, and keep our industry ahead of the game .

/Public release. This material from the original organization/authors may be ad hoc in nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the authors.

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