Gus's Musings

July 2, 2014

Diversity in Farming values

Sometimes when individuals or groups offer some food/fibre that has “special” qualities, other producers feel as though they are saying “everyone else does a poor job”,  that isn’t what I hear at all.  When I hear a beef producer selling (for example) “ethically produced beef”, I don’t feel they are saying that I don’t produce beef ethically.  They are simply saying that “we feel very strongly that beef should be produced ethically, we are good at it and we are proud of it”.

I think it is fantastic that farmers are prepared to market their strengths and receive rewards for their skills by connecting them with consumers that have similar values.  At the same time they are setting benchmarks that the rest of us can aspire to and aim for in order to improve the way we produce our wonderful products.

At Wyndham we have very strong values around the land, we look to manage our animals in harmony with the landscape.  As we are managing our farm respecting our values, we are happy as well, making for a happy healthy farm.  As most farms have different values it is important that each sets their own benchmarks, we try not to compare ourselves to our neighbours, setting our own standards or goals.

There are plenty of “dream crushers” out there saying that our goals are unachievable or totally unrealistic for our region, most of the time they are just placing their standards or paradigms on us, instead of respecting ours. 

It is so important that we encourage many farmers to build on their strengths and where possible market them, then they promote the skills they have raising the bar for all the rest of us in the industry.  This is R&D at ground root level, the best type as it is so transferable from farmer to farmer.

So next time you hear someone in your industry marketing their area of expertise, encourage them and learn from them as they may hold the key to your farm improving.


One Comment

  1. Lynne Strong

    Well said Gus

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