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Agriculture Innovation Update

Wednesday June 12  Tintinara Memorial Hall, 1.15pm – 7.30pm

Go for the afternoon or just the session that interests you


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Crop Nutrition in the High Rainfall Zone (HRZ)

Tuesday June 18

8.30 - 11am

Starting at Struan House, followed by a site visit to Bool Lagoon


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Pulse Check: Coonalpyn/Coomandook Post seeding meeting

Tuesday June 18, 9am

1154 Werrimrook Road, Coomandook


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MFMG Celebrates 20 Years

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The celebration took place at the Naracoorte Town Hall which provided a wonderful venue for the sit down dinner prepared by local Limestone Coast caterers St Bees, and the perfect atmosphere to encourage dancing to great music from Ben Hood.

The evening began with Chair Lou Stock welcoming guests before handing over to emcee for the night Craig Hole. Craig was very much involved with MFMG from its humble beginnings and so there was no better person to recount the history dating back to the early connection with SFS in 1997. Back then, a SE committee was formed that was funded by GRDC and SARDI performed the early trials. However, the main driver for the group was to try to get local farmers out of their comfort zones and promote discussions on cropping in what was then the somewhat overlooked high rainfall zone (HRZ).

With inaugural chair Ian McNeil in charge, trials in Victoria were visited and the first raised bed trial in the South East of SA instigated. Jen Lillecrapp recounted that experience later in the evening saying there was no money but somehow they talked people into doing things for them as they were determined to show them what was possible!

In 2004 the first CEO Ken Solly was appointed and his knowledge and understanding of the issues facing South East farmers was critical to MFMG’s development. Once the mic was handed over, Ken spoke of the need to continue to put structures in place in the agricultural industry going forward, emphasising that young people need to keep passing the banner to their kids.

By 2006 MFMG had 115 farming members and became fully independent from SFS to concentrate on remaining relevant to the HRZ regions of SA. In 2008 Krysteen McElroy took over the reins as CEO and continued to increase its profile. More recently farmers in the Upper South East or the medium rainfall zone (MRZ) region have come on board as well as expansion into livestock (which includes field days and trials). MFMG currently has around 370 members, 30 sponsors and has trial sites spread throughout the South East.

Craig also spoke with Krysteen, previous chair Lachie Seears and as mentioned Jen Lillecrapp and Ken Solly before congratulating Chair Louise Stock and all those involved in the MacKillop Farm Management Group on the legacy which he said “is plain to see across the region daily”. He concluded by thanking those with the original vision and said that he firmly believes that “groups such as MacKillop, in conjunction with other industry sectors, are ideally positioned to maintain and grow their involvement in agricultural development, education and extension”.