Farm Forum a Great Success

Economic viability and succession planning were key themes of the ‘Seeing the Future of Farming Forum’ held in Benalla last Wednesday, 26th February. About 200 people attended the night which featured topics of livestock export markets, farming diversity, climate, succession planning, sustainability and health. The forum was initiated by Rural Outreach Worker Ivan Lister, following concern about increasing pressures on farming families to maintain viability after a challenging season.

The evening featured guest speakers followed by a Q&A style panel with local farmers. Gecko CLaN’s Jacci Campbell was a panellist and spoke about the important ecosystem services that farms provide, and how these should be recognised. She also spoke about the future of Landcare and the need for political support to ensure its future.

Warrenbayne Landcare pioneer Angus Howell was a panellist and spoke about succession planning and his personal experience of selling the family farm. Mark Foletta represented the younger generation, and spoke about his experience of adding value to the family enterprise through increasing diversity and finding new ways to get top-dollar for his produce.

The Gecko CLaN held a stall and received high levels of interest throughout the night. The evening provided a great opportunity for the local farming community to come together and discuss the challenges and opportunities for the industry.