Quirindi couple named NSW Farmers of the Year

A beef cattle farming couple from the Liverpool Plains in northern NSW have been named the 2014 NSW Farmers of the Year.

Derek and Kirrily Blomfield manage “Colorado”, a 980 hectare grazing farm, producing steers and heifers that are grass fed on perennial pastures and sold direct to consumers under their brand “The Conscious Farmer”.

NSW Primary Industries Minister Katrina Hodgkinson and NSW Farmers president Fiona Simson presented the Blomfields with the 2014 NSW Farmer of the Year award tonight at a special function for the Award attended by more than 100 people at Sydney’s MLC Centre.

“Derek and Kirrily are showing great innovation, tapping into the latest science, seeking expertise from outside their enterprise and making consumer linkages,” Minister Hodgkinson said.

“They impressed the judges with their commitment to improving and regenerating soils, pastures and biodiversity while optimising beef production and profitability.”

Katrina Hodgkinson also congratulated the other finalists present on the night, Dorrigo potato and beef producer Scott Beaumont and Goulburn turkey grower James Mifsud. 

“James Mifsud operates “Trilla”, an intensive 50,000 turkey farm near Goulburn, growing turkeys from day old poults to market age birds of 18 weeks.

“The turkeys are free to roam in open sheds naturally ventilated with computer controlled shutters and curtains – and achieve excellent feed conversion rates along with growth rates at times exceeding world’s best practice.

“Scott Beaumont runs a 635 hectare diversified enterprise over three properties near Dorrigo on the NSW mid north coast producing Woolworths yearling cattle,  growing 700 tonnes of crisping potatoes each year, and operating a contract planting business.

“Both James and Scott are at the forefronts of their industries and I congratulate them on their achievements.”

NSW Farmers’ President Fiona Simson was very impressed with this year’s finalists.

“The Blomfields, Scott Beaumont and James Mifsud are clearly very hard working, innovative and passionate about the job they’re doing,” she said.

“They are helping us show the broader community the incredible diversity, enterprise and business management skills of our farming men and women,” Ms Simson said.

“It’s these skills that ensure the food and fibre we all get to enjoy are of a high standard, using the latest sustainable production practises, and generating valuable contributions to our national economy.“

The annual NSW Farmer of the Year award recognises the best farmers in NSW, focussing on their agricultural management skills, their use of innovation, profitability, environmental sustainability and community involvement.

The Award is an initiative of the NSW Farmers’ Association and NSW Department of Primary Industries, with support from The Land, the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW and WorkCover NSW.

The Blomfields win a cash prize of $10,000 and the two other finalists receive $2000 each.


ends

17 November 2014

Contact: Veneta Chapple

Phone: 0429 990 218

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