And that’s a wrap! NFF 2018 National Congress overview

The National Farmer’s Federation hosted its biennial two day National Congress in Canberra this week where guests took in inspiring presentations from keynote speakers from around the nation and the globe and nine insightful panel sessions.

See the #NFFCongress on twitter for an extensive overview and key quotes from the whole two days.

Day 1 highlights

The Minister for Agriculture and Water resources opened the event.

Brianna Casey from Food Bank Australia presented their 2018 Hunger Report.

“Out of the Box Business panel” session with  Olympia Yarger from GoTerra, Charles Coventry from AgEdge, Rachel Hinkley the Weekly Times Garmer of the Year, Susan Jenkin from Ironbark Citrus and Sue Neales from The Australian moderating the session.

The panel focused on how “out of the box thinking” can grow vibrant regional businesses around Australia.

“Leading for Inclusion” panel session with Kirsty Richards from Sun Pork Solutions, Skye Saunders from Australian National University, Troy Setter from Consolidated Pastoral Company and Katharine Murphy from The Guardian moderated the event.

The panel discussed how leaders in the industry can champion inclusion in the workplace to deliver tangible benefits to an organisation.

The “Talking Tech: unpacking the future of Aussie agtech” panel session with Peter Gurney, NBN Co, Salah Sukkarieh, Centre for Field Robotics and the University of Sydney, Emma Weston, AgriDigital, Sarah Nolet, AgThentic and Warren Jennings, Telstra.Andrew Lai moderated the event.

The panel discussed Australian agriculture’s digital future in terms of robotics, Blockchain and connectivity.

The “Talking 2030” panel session with Robert Poole from KPMG, Tim O’Leary from Telstra, John Harvey from Agrifutures Australia, Richard Heathf rom Australian Farm Institute, Fiona Simson and Tony Mahar moderated the event.

The panel discussed the NFF’s 2030 Roadmap and their ideas on how Australian agriculture can achieve a farm gate output of $100 billion industry by 2030.

Day 2 highlights

Prime Minister Scott Morrison opened day 2 of the Congress and promised an Agricultural Visa as a long term goal for the government and signed up to support the NFF’s vision of a $100 billion industry by 2030.

The Diversity in Agriculture Leadership Program graduation and panel session with Amy Cosby, Brigid Price, Deanna Lush, Lucinda Hawkins, Mary Retallack, Penny Schulz, Sally Martin, Skye Douglass and the ABC’s Brett Worthington was a crow pleaser. The panel discussed gender diversity in leadership roles with in the agricultural industry and how they plan to achieve their aspirations as leaders in the industry.

Shadow Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Joel Fitzgibbon attended the event as a keynote speaker, also supporting the NFF’s $100 billion vision.

Keynote speaker Bob Reiter, the Global Head of R&D at Bayer Crop Science, traveled from Germany to talk about how science can be the vehicle to move agriculture into a successful future.

The “Growing Sustainably” panel session with Wendy Craikof the EPBC Review, Richard Norton, Meat & Livestock Australia, Steve Lacey, AgForce Queensland Farmers Ltd. Gabrielle Chan, The Guardian Australia moderated the session. The panel spoke about how the industry can fulfill its ambition in lightening our environmental footprint, meeting the community’s animal welfare expectations, and ensuring a positive experience for our labour force.

Michael Every wooed the crowd with his confronting take on the global market and agriculture’s place in it.

“Australia’s Response to Drought” panel session saw Drought Coordinator Major General Stephen Day, Danica Keys, CWA NSW and Graham Cockeral if Need for Feed discuss how government and charities are helping Australian farmers and communities manage the current drought.

The “Global Approach” panel featured Michael Every of Rabobank, Feyi Akindoyeni, Newgate Communications, John Colley, Australian Wool Network, Louise van Meurs, Department of Agriculture & Water Resources and the Georgie Aley, KPMG, as the moderator. The line-up talked Australian agriculture’s global impact and how policies which diversify everything from our export markets to our capital sources, can place us on a strong footing for the future.

Catherine Marriott and prime Super’s Lachlan Baird had a conversation about rural and agricultural investments.

The final session of the day was titled “Building Trust”. Andrew Spencer, Australian Pork Limited, Carissa Buckland, Bayer, Lisa Sharp, Meat & Livestock Australia and Cameron Morse, FTI Consulting discussed why agricultural needs to assure consumers of the ethical and sustainable practices deployed in the production of their food and fibre.

Andrea Martinello

Andrea Martinello

Andrea is the Community & Engagement Officer at the National Farmers' Federation.

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