Young Farm­ers’ Chal­lenge opens

Show­cas­ing the next gen­er­a­tion of pro­duc­ers

Central and North Burnett Times - - MONTO SHOW -

THE Young Farm­ers’ Chal­lenge is among a range of new fea­tures planned for the Monto Show and or­gan­is­ers ex­pect it to be a high­light for par­tic­i­pants and spec­ta­tors alike.

While a new ad­di­tion to the Monto Show sched­ule, the Young Farm­ers’ Chal­lenge has been part of the show cir­cuit for some time.

The event al­lows young farm­ers, aged 15 and up, to show­case their skills in a se­ries of ac­tiv­i­ties that high­light the chal­lenges of ru­ral work.

These ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude things like hay bal­ing and erect­ing a fence and within strict time lim­its with the win­ning team be­ing the first to fin­ish.

The chal­lenge calls for teams of four, in­clud­ing at least one fe­male mem­ber.

While some of the in­di­vid­ual ac­tiv­i­ties carry across from show to show, the twist is that the spe­cific events are kept se­cret un­til the start of the chal­lenge so young farm­ers will have to com­pete un­der pres­sure.

Or­gan­iser Bre­anna Hockey said the chal­lenges would be kept general, though tai­lored to the abil­i­ties of Burnett farm­ers.

“I think in places like Monto, agri­cul­ture work is taken for granted be­cause it’s such a cor­ner­stone of our com­mu­nity,” Ms Hockey said.

“But when you get fur­ther afield, par­tic­u­larly for the vis­i­tors com­ing to Monto, it re­ally show­cases what the peo­ple of our re­gion are ca­pa­ble of do­ing.”

There will be stew­ards su­per­vis­ing the event to keep it safe and en­ter­tain­ing.

Monto Ru­ral Traders will spon­sor the event, sup­ply­ing the $300 for the win­ners and $200 for the run­ners-up.

They will also sup­ply prize packs of ma­te­ri­als and equip­ment for the event.

Monto Ru­ral Traders owner Kevin Roth said it was more im­por­tant than ever to pro­mote young farm­ers.

“There’s not many (young farm­ers) out there,” Mr Roth said.

“I think the av­er­age age of Aus­tralian farm­ers is some­where be­tween 55 and 60 years old.”

Mr Roth said the cost of land meant farm­ing ca­reer is were out of reach for many young peo­ple who haven’t been raised on a farm.

“The young ones are suc­ces­sion-plan­ning farm­ers where par­ents are still there and they’ve gone away for an ed­u­ca­tion and come home to work to pos­si­bly take the farm on and buy it from their par­ents or just take it over,” Mr Roth said.

Be­cause farm­ing is such an im­por­tant part of the re­gion, events like the Young Farmer’s Chal­lenge are nec­es­sary to show­case the fun side of farm­ing for young peo­ple.

Peo­ple look­ing to nom­i­nate for the event can col­lect an en­try form from Monto Ru­ral Traders.

CALL TO AGRI­CUL­TURE: Or­gan­is­ers of the Monto Show have added the Young Farm­ers’ Chal­lenge to this year’s sched­ule.

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