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Young Country : Emma Wilson

Young Country : Emma Wilson

Young Farmers are the future of the agriculture sector, so each month we shine the spotlight on a Young Farmer. Today we talk to Emma Wilson.

1. What is the name of your club, and how long have you been a member?

I have been a member of Dunedin Young farmers since November. The previous four years I was a member of Thornbury Young Farmers.

2. What has been the highlight for you of joining Young Farmers? What are the benefits and experiences that you feel have helped you most?

Highlights: Weekend trips away and attending events with other clubs are always good fun. Some of the best events have been attending the evening shows for FMG Young Farmer of the Year, club camping trips and interclub events.

Benefits: There is always an event coming up to attend which keeps the calendar pretty full. It is also great meeting people from all different agri-careers. The network you gain from young farmers is invaluable and can help you out in all areas of the Agri sector.

3. How did you become involved in agriculture?

I grew up on a sheep and cropping farm in Central Southland. Although I did not want to become a farmer myself, this is where my interest in the industry began.

4. What is your job now?

I am working as an accountant in Dunedin, with a rural focus. Previously in a similar role based out of Invercargill.

5. What do you think the future of farming will look like, and what would like to see happening in New Zealand agriculture going forward?

As environmental legislation changes, It would be great to see some financial incentives in place when you achieve them. Many of our growers are already performing well in this area and deserve to be rewarded. The financial incentive could also be a good way to convince those not ready to invest to catch up, especially when the cost of farming has increased so much recently.

6. What are your future plans?

I’ve just finished my chartered accountancy, so now working towards applying that knowledge practically in the industry. The goal is to end up in the advisory space, with a focus on the agricultural industry.

7. Who has been your biggest inspiration in agriculture, and why?

Sounds cheesy but it would have to be my parents. Growing up on a smaller family farm I had a good understanding of how tough and rewarding the industry can be. The farm changed so much as I grew up to ensure that new opportunities to improve production and diversity income were looked into.

A couple of these included also becoming a crop farm, trialing different winter feeds, leasing some land or using an automatic lamb feeder.  I also appreciate that no matter how tough and busy things did get on farm, Mum was always first to put her hand up to give back in many volunteer committees and Dad somehow always managed to get things done on farm for a last minute trip to some of our big sports competitions.

As told to Claire Inkson