Industry leaders recognised at Tasmanian Dairy Awards

A Cressy-based dairy farm has been crowned cream of the crop in one of tightest competitions in the history of the Tasmanian Dairy Awards.

It was third time’s a charm for Woodrising Dairies, which was announced as the 2023 ANZ Dairy Business of the Year at Tasmanian Dairy Awards in Devonport on Friday 16 June. The win follows their previous two years as finalists.

Woodrising Dairies is owned by Compass Tas Dairy Operations and managed by Troy Ainslie. The business was the top performer from a group of 27 Tasmanian dairy farm businesses that participated in a benchmarking program for the 2021-22 financial year.

The Dairy Business of the Year Award is conducted by the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA) as part of the DairyHIGH 2 project. which is funded by Dairy Australia and the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA).

The free benchmarking program considers a range of efficiency and performance indicators of dairy farming businesses factors including financial, management, pasture, herd size and environment.

TIA Dairy Extension Team Leader Lesley Irvine said the calibre of the three finalists was outstanding and that the judges were impressed by Woodrising’s exceptional approach to people and pasture management.

“Woodrising Dairies had a strong focus on their farm team and showed excellent mentoring and professional development,” Ms Irvine said.

“There was a real focus on people and a push to create a good work-life balance, which was great to see. The high level of care for the cows and young stock was also particularly impressive.

“Pasture management on their farm was excellent – achieved through regular pasture measurement, annual soil testing and development of a fertiliser plan. They also used soil moisture meters to accurately schedule irrigation and had a good understanding of the soil structure to optimise water use.

“Congratulations to Woodrising Dairies for winning the Award in their third year as a finalist as well as to the teams at The Avenue and Ashburton for their consistent high performance.”

The Tasmanian Dairy Awards are a collaboration between TIA and DairyTas.

DairyTas Regional Manager Laura Richardson said it was wonderful to bring Tasmania’s dairy industry together to celebrate high performers in the industry and join together to reflect and celebrate the past year. 

“It has been fantastic to recognise those businesses and individuals throughout the industry that have performed across these key areas in 2023,”  Ms Richardson said.

“With the Tasmanian Dairy industry being worth over $500 million at the farmgate, and Tasmania now producing over 10 percent of Australia’s milk production, Tasmania’s dairy industry continues to grow momentum. The Awards celebrate the industry and the farming businesses who drive the sector.”

Results of the 2023 Tasmanian Dairy Awards:

  • ANZ Dairy Business of the Year Award: Woodrising Dairies, owned by Compass Tas Dairy Operations and managed by Troy Ainslie.
  • Fonterra Share Dairy Farmer of the Year Award: Nathan and Cassidy Lawrence, Currajong at Flowerdale.
  • Fonterra Dairy Employee of the Year Award: Alexandria Shanks.
  • Aurora Energy Employer of Choice Award: Ashgrove Farms Tasmania Pty Ltd.
  • Mondelez Young Dairy Farmer Encouragement Award: Russell Grandfield.
  • NRM North Dairy Environmental Award: Meander Pastoral Co Pty Ltd.
  • Safe Farming Tasmania Dairy Farm Safety Award: Compass Tas Dairy Operations Pty Ltd.
  • The inaugural Future of Dairy Scholarship (funded by the Lawrence family): Gabriella Jago.

TIA is a joint venture between the University of Tasmania and the Tasmanian Government. 

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