Nils' win was announced at Parliament House, Canberra, today as part of the annual Kondinin Group and ABC Rural Australian Farmer of the Year Awards.
Described by many as a ‘trail blazer', Nils actively manages a mixed grazing and cropping farm on 3250-hectares, 20 kilometres north of Esperance, WA and has been involved in several game-changing industry initiatives.
Kondinin Group General Manager of Research, Ben White, said that while proving himself as a competent farmer, Nils' greatest contribution has been his commitment to the local community and wider advancement of agriculture.
"Nils was a pioneer in claying the light sandy soils of the Esperance region and growers have benefited through enhanced production efficiencies and improved land conservation—particularly through reduced wind and water erosion," Mr White said.
"He also contributed to the early research and adoption of minimal till and the development of lupins, at both local and State level, and through his work with the Gibson Lupin Group, has helped Esperance lupin growers have the opportunity to increase their yields from a district average of 1 tonne to 3 tonnes per hectare."
GRDC Chairman, John Woods said Nils' contribution to industry and community was outstanding.
"Nils' innovative work across the grains industry has taken initiative and dedication. He has created an impressive legacy for growers not only within his region of Western Australia, but right across agriculture."
He is steadfast and forward thinking and enjoys stepping out of his comfort zone to trial new and exciting opportunities in agriculture.
When asked about his farming career, Nils says he has relished the challenges.
"At the end of the day, it has always been about improving the system and benefitting not just my farm, but my community and the industry more broadly," Nils said.
Importantly, Nils continues to be a motivated industry and community leader, an advocate for primary producers and importantly, still has a passion for farming.
"I love farming and all things associated with growing healthy, profitable and sustainable crops and caring for our livestock," Nils said.
The annual Kondinin Group and ABC Rural Australian Farmer of the Year Awards have been running since 2010 and continue to recognise excellence in farming and farming communities across rural and regional Australia. The 2019 Awards are supported by Platinum Sponsor WFI.
Information on all 2019 award recipients can be found at www.farmeroftheyear.com.au