Tassie producers win top award

FOURTH generation Tasmanian farmers Sue and Gerard Daly are the Kondinin Group and ABC Rural 2019 Australian Farmers of the Year, announced today at Parliament House, Canberra.
Tassie producers win top award  Tassie producers win top award  Tassie producers win top award  Tassie producers win top award  Tassie producers win top award

staff writer

The Daly's focus on hard work, sustainable farming and innovative approaches to reducing food waste earned them the top honour, as well as the 2019 Award for Excellence in Innovation, sponsored by Telstra.

Kondinin Group general manager of research, Ben White, said the Daly's approach to farming and their out-of-the-box thinking when it came to food waste was exceptional.

"Sue and Gerard demonstrate a great understanding of what makes a successful farming operation and how to go from single producer to a viable commercial entity," White said.

"They have developed their farm into becoming one of Australia's most diverse potato producers; harvesting 4500 tonnes of high-quality washed potatoes across 603ha, employing 38 staff, producing 4800 bottles of alcohol per year and more than 300 tonne of potato salad plus an extra 200 tonne of value-add products."

When asked what drives their resourceful approach to farming, Sue Daly said it is to improve the appeal and value of potatoes.

"We started to see a reduction in the fresh potato crop consumed in Australia with around 20 per cent of the fresh potato crop being perceived by the consumer as not perfect enough to buy," Sue said.

Other presentations made at the Awards ceremony in Canberra today were:

Young Farmer of the Year Award, sponsored by McDonald's Australia - Benjamin Martin, Bowen Queensland.

Agricultural Student of the Year Award, sponsored by AgriFutures Australia - Charles Sturt University student Sally Downie, NSW.

Rural Community Leader of the Year Award, sponsored by Market Check - Jackie Jarvis, Margaret River, WA.

Farming Legend of the Year Award, sponsored by the Grains Research and Development Corporation - Nils Blumann, Esperance, WA.

Rural Consultant of the Year Award, sponsored by Corteva Agriscience - Sally Murfet, Tasmania.

Award for Excellence in Agricultural Research, sponsored by Corteva Agriscience - professor Chengdao Li.

Award for Excellence in Diversification, sponsored by Decipher - Andrew Martin, NSW.

Award for Excellence in Technology, sponsored by New Holland - Brad and Tracey Wooldridge, Arthur River, WA.

For more details: www.farmeroftheyear.com.au