Improving farm businesses was the order of the day at last week’s Future Farming Expo in Rochester.
About 70 people attended the expo, hosted by North Central and Goulburn Broken catchment management authorities.
Goulburn Broken CMA regional Landcare facilitator Ashley Rogers said farmers thought it was worthwhile.
‘‘I think it was very positive. Especially Nathan Scott was a standout talking about new technology. People were inspired to set new goals,’’ Ms Rogers said.
‘‘One farmer said it was a good that we don’t need to be victims to climate and market forces — if we set goals, we can prepare for it.’’
The guest speakers talked about a range of topics — from business employment and new technologies to succession planning and trade and marketing — before the afternoon sessions allowed farmers to interact more in a smaller group.
‘‘The concurrent sessions were a good opportunity for farmers to ask questions. Rather than be in the big group all day, the narrow focused sessions appealed to some people,’’ Ms Rogers said.
Keynote speaker, Mike Stephens of Meridian Agriculture, talked about employment and training as well as how to build strong teams within the workforce.
But it was the talk on succession planning by Lyn Sykes, from High Resolution, which produced the quote of the day, Ms Rogers said.
‘‘She said on the topic of succession: ‘talking succession is like talking sex with your kids — uncomfortable, avoiding details where possible’.’’
Ms Rogers said the main point of the expo was to get more young people involved in the industry.
‘‘The panel discussion session was around how to engage young people in agriculture and how to make it (agriculture) more exciting.’’