Bessiebelle farmer joins the WestVic Dairy Board

The WestVic Dairy Board welcomed new Associate Director, Will McDonald at its recent Annual General Meeting. Mr McDonald farms at Bessiebelle with wife Melissa and her parents, John and Naomi Pye.

An appreciation of the important role extension plays in the dairy industry was a driving factor in applying for the role.

“Extension services were incredibly valuable to me when I started out. Using the available resources and attending various events helped me to increase my knowledge and develop the business to where it is today.

“Keeping this focus is important to aid new entrants to the industry, but also in helping established farmers run profitable, sustainable businesses by delivering the latest in research and development,” Will said.

Milking 500 Holstein cows on 454 hectares, the people space is a priority for the new Board member.

“Attracting good people into the industry, and then ensuring they are well looked after with a safe workplace and good training opportunities will help retain them and allow them to develop their careers in dairy.

“I am very confident that the dairy industry in south-west Victoria will thrive over the coming years and I want to assist WestVic Dairy to deliver relevant, valuable extension services to the region’s farmers to help achieve this.”

The AGM also saw Treasurer Rhonda Henry reappointed for a second term, and former Associate Director, Brad Collins move to a full Director position.

WestVic Dairy Chair, Simone Renyard is looking forward to the year ahead.

“We are thrilled to have Will join us on the Board. He brings with him a huge passion, great enthusiasm and a drive to ensure our farmers get their extension needs met through the services we offer. Bringing new voices and thinking to the Board table is incredibly important.

“The WestVic Dairy Board is committed to providing the best possible service to our farmers. We always welcome their input and feedback. Together we look forward to advancing the dairy industry here in the south-west,” Simone said.

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