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Holbrook Landcare Network “Marketing and Your Farming System” Annual Ag Forum
3 Jun 2015

Holbrook Landcare’s Annual Agriculture Forum for 2015 saw around 75 people attending to hear speakers discuss this years topic “Marketing and Your Farming System”. Feedback from attendees was extremely positive regarding the quality of speakers and the diverse range of marketing topics covered.

Mick Keogh, Executive Director of Australian Farm Institute, discussed global agricultural trade and its exponential growth over the past decade, and how this has increased competition in international markets and as well as Australia’s domestic market. Mr Keogh went on to identify how consumers are becoming progressively wealthier and as a result fussier about the products they buy. For Australian farmers this means there are more diverse marketing options for their products. Farmers need to identify if what they produce is meeting these market drivers in order to remain successful.

Georgina Gubbins from “Maneroo” in Western Victoria, discussed marketing for a red meat business focused on the consumer. “Stock have flexibility to hit specifications in various markets as opportunities arise”, Ms Gubbins said. “Consumers are wanting more from our food.  They want to have value for money, a product that is safely produced and socially responsible”. Georgina looks at trends coming out of Europe and research from MLA with regard to food safety, animal welfare, carbon farming and any other issues that may influence the consumer to consider red meat. 

Kirrily & Derek Blomfield from Quirindi NSW shared their direct marketing story, which generated a lot of interest. They direct sell their beef to a number of consumers across NSW, using their brand “The Conscious Farmer”. Kirrily & Derek launched into direct marketing after identifying what they wanted to produce, how they wanted to produce it and the price needed to increase their profit margins. They share their story to consumers of a sustainably produced grass fed product that is chemical free, delivered to your door. Winners of the NSW Farmers Award in 2014 has increased their profile, leveredged their skill set, and opened the door to meeting many amazing people, which has been an important part of the marketing process for them.

Tom Bull from “Lambpro”, a family owned and run prime lamb seed stock business near Holbrook, discussed his marketing strategies, which included influencing sheep genetics to produce a more profitable sheep carcass, and increase production volume to secure profitability at point of sale. Mr Bull identified the necessity to produce a product that consumers want to buy; his willingness to change his product to fit consumer demand provides leverage within the market.

Mark Inglis from JBS identified how production systems in Australia have been geared to produce a product , not knowing whether it meets customer expectations or not. Once a product has left the farm gate it is someone else’s issue. Mr Inglis inferred that if this practice continues it will only have negative effects on Australia’s red meat industry. “Producers need to be customer focused whether they like it or not”, Mr Inglis said.

Holbrook Landcare Network’s Agricultural Forum for 2015 was made possible through support from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.



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