Sat. Jul 13th, 2024

Climate change impacts everyone, but New England’s farmers will likely be on the frontline.

Analysis from the NSW Government states this might look like less rain and prolonged droughts that could contribute to crop and animal stress.  

The Farming Family Reboot workshop event in Armidale (April 18-20) creates a forum to share new information and skills that aim to make our farms more climate resilient.

The University of New England campus will host the event thanks to funding support from the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund and Rural Aid.

Thanks to the success of this in 2022, this year’s workshop will feature expert speakers and practical examples in a family-friendly environment.

The three-day program will cover:

  • The way long-term decisions are made on the farm.
  • Understanding and using critical decision points and weather forecasts in the livestock and cropping cycle to better manage climate challenges.
  • Matching stocking rates to the feed supply.
  •  Supplementary feeding of livestock to meet production goals.
  • Considering an investment in new infrastructure to manage drought and other climate challenges better.
  • Relationships within the family and making better decisions as a family.
  • An outline of the research and development at UNE SMART Farms.

This comprehensive structure has a community-minded approach at its heart.

“We developed the program to prepare our farming communities for the future,” said Lu Hogan, the SQNNSW Innovation Hub’s Armidale Node Manager.

“It supports farmers with skills on how to be more resilient to drought and its impact on their business.”

“They can also take some time away from the farm to stop to think about their overall goals while being exposed to new ideas and fresh perspectives.”

“We’ve had an overwhelmingly positive response from last year’s participants, who have formed strong bonds and friendships even though nobody knew each other at the start.”

As the name suggests, the event is family-focused, and childcare may also be available at the UNE campus, though bookings will be essential and subject to availability.

The Farming Family Reboot will be held at the University of New England, Armidale, on April 18-20, with all accommodation and meals included.

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