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Australia : More support for young farming professionals.

The Victorian Coalition Government will provide $20,000 to the Young Dairy Development Program to help continue professional development to young dairy farmers.

Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Peter Walsh said the funding would support the grass-roots program to help young people build their knowledge of dairying and their leadership skills, while increasing their participation in the local community.

This funding further cements the Victorian Coalition s commitment to young people in agriculture and our investment in the next generation of food and fibre producers, Mr Walsh said.

The Young Dairy Development Program runs discussion group sessions, farm visits, guest speakers and seminars to help young people and those new to the dairy industry to gain more farm knowledge and build valuable networks.

The program is a prime example of how we can support young people to become highly productive and profitable farmers, ensuring a bright future for our agricultural industries.

Mr Walsh also said as a result of Victorian Coalition Government funding, a dedicated food and fibre careers officer had begun working at the Victorian Farmers Federation. The careers officer will initially pilot programs with schools in South West Victoria to encourage a connection to agriculture and promote pathways into the industry.

The Coalition Government has committed $240,000 over two years for a careers officer to help schools highlight opportunities for students considering careers in food and fibre, Mr Walsh said.

Getting school kids excited about agriculture is just one of the steps we need to take to ensure a bright, prosperous future for Victoria s food and fibre industry.

VFF president Mr Peter Tuohey said the appointment was a great opportunity to showcase agriculture and increase awareness of where a career in the food and fibre industry can take you.

The opportunities for a career in agriculture are endless. The Food and Fibre Careers Officer will work with secondary schools to highlight the many and varied pathways to a career in food and fibre, Mr Tuohey said.

Mr Walsh said the Coalition Government was committed to promoting agriculture as the exciting and rewarding career it was, and supporting young people once they enter the industry.

Last year s Parliamentary inquiry into attracting and retaining young farmers showed that by communities, educators and industry working together we can improve the image of agriculture and promote it as an exciting career choice for young Victorians, Mr Walsh said.

Industry and government alike need to invest in young people if we are going to double food and fibre production by 2030 and have a sustainable and prosperous future for agriculture in Victoria.

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Publication:Mena Report
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Nov 7, 2013
Words:446
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