Farm IT

The weekend started with a rain-filled trip to Jerry’s Plains, floating Izz down to friends for training. Having been involved with cattle showing for a few years, I’m amazed how much more supportive the Clydesdale breeders are. Opening their farms, sharing tips and ideas, and looking out to build quality horses- all wonderfully gifted in support. It’s the passion for the future that I connect with, the commitment to those who come next.

As Izz frolicked in the flats of the Wollombi, the ground came to life with energy. She ran the round yard with ease, stabled without worry and as always enjoyed getting washed and worried about. We learnt new tricks, gained new ideas, and I think together dreamed up the perfect Clydesdale farm in unison, wanting to ensure the tradition lives on.

Sunday was spent collecting honey at the farm, emptying out hives that have been untouched for a while. As Mum and Dad’s AirBnB continues to take off, hosting visitors from around the world, our honey has become quite the novelty. Taken by a beekeeper in Europe, sent by other travellers to Korea, the liquid gold is really making it’s impact.

After a day of work, it was then back to the city to catch another plane. This time, to attend New Zealand for the MobileTech Conference. Having been invited by NZ Young Farmers (NZYF) to share my thoughts on AgTech, I feel truly humbled by the opportunity. It was wonderful for the NZYF team to show me around and host me!

The views amazing, people incredible and opportunities endless. As we sat through speakers on the Wednesday, telling tales of tech adoption and opportunity, it seemed that there was one thing missing… The farmers. It’s easy to design technology and hope the masses come, harder to design with those that need it and meet user needs.

That night, we travelled to the Reporua for a young farmers meeting. At a small, local bar, I got the shock of my life when we walked in and over 40 young farmers were there to talk about events, raise money for the local community and share ideas (and a drink or 2). Having been involved in the Australian version of this organisation for several years, it’s clear to me that we have a long way to go.

Thursday was the day that it all came together. After thinking non-stop about the sector and ag-tech, there was only one thing on my mind. In a land of promised utopia, where farmers can remotely control their farms, this is not where we want the sector to go. Instead we should build upon the passion and love for what farmers do and use technology to enable them to make better decisions.

Today, I travel back to Gloucester. Full of ideas and a drive to make them happen.

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