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Planning for Profit: Drought proofing with Fiona Best

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“It's not something that you implement and then you're finished with. You have to keep thinking about it… keep talking about it. It's a marathon, not a sprint, and you probably are going to have to change the tactics along the way. It's about that re-evaluation process,” - BCG CEO Fiona Best.

In the fourth episode of our eight-part Planning for Profit series we caught up with BCG's Fiona Best to learn how we can better prepare our farm business (and ourselves) for the next inevitable drought.

About Fiona Best

In her position as BCG CEO, Fiona works to bring relevant agricultural research and extension opportunities to farming communities by attracting investments to improve the prosperity of broadacre farming locally, regionally and nationally. Fiona is excited to lead BCG because of the large part the organisation plays in the community and its role supporting farmers to be viable and prosperous. She is proud of BCG’s achievements and contributions over the last 31 years and has a strong desire to contribute positively to the ongoing journey and evolution of the group.

Fiona is also Regional Director, Victoria Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub (Australian Government Future Drought Fund) and is committed to enhancing the drought preparedness and resilience of Victoria’s agricultural industries, the environment and regional communities, encompassing broader agricultural innovation. Engaging with a range of industry and community stakeholders.

After growing up on her mixed enterprise family farm, cropping and producing sheep, Fiona studied a Bachelor of Agricultural Science (Honours) and Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Melbourne.

Victoria Drought Hub

Led by the University of Melbourne and with headquarters at UM’s Dookie Campus, the Vic Hub is a Partnership between five farming organisations (Birchip Cropping Group, Food & Fibre Gippsland, Mallee Regional Innovation Centre, Riverine Plains and Southern Farming Systems), four universities (UM, Deakin, Federation and La Trobe), and the State Government (through Agriculture Victoria).  

One of eight hubs established nationally under the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund (FDF), the Vic Hub works to enhance the drought preparedness and resilience of Victoria’s agricultural industries, the environment and regional communities, encompassing broader agricultural innovation. Engaging with a range of industry and community stakeholders, the Vic Hub links research with community needs for sustainable outcomes.

Other useful resources:

Victoria Drought Hub
https://www.bcg.org.au/research-results/drought-hub/
https://vicdroughthub.org.au/

Ross Kingwell, UWA School of Agriculture and Environment paper:
How drought affects the financial characteristics of Australian farm businesses
https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1467-8489.12195

BCG staff contacts
https://www.bcg.org.au/about/team/
To learn more about BCG visit www.bcg.org.au
This program/project received funding from the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund.
https://www.agriculture.gov.au/agriculture-land/farm-food-drought/drought/future-drought-fund/extension-adoption-drought-resilience-farming-practices-grants

In the spirit of reconciliation, BCG acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea, and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past, present and emerging. 

 

Disclaimer:

The Birchip Cropping Group Inc. (“BCG”) makes no warranties regarding merchantability, fitness for purpose or otherwise with respect to this podcast. Any person relying on this report does so entirely at their own risk. BCG and all persons associated with it exclude all liability (including liability for negligence) in relation to any opinion, advice or information contained in this podcast and any consequences arising from the use of such opinion, advice or information to the full extent of the law, including but not limited to consequences arising as a result of action or inaction taken by that person or any third parties in reliance on the report. Where liability cannot be lawfully extinguished, liability is limited to the re-supply of the report or payment of the cost of resupplying the report. You should seek independent professional, technical or legal (as required) advice before acting on any opinion, advice or information contained in this podcast.

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