Rabobank Australia is a part of the international Rabobank Group, the world’s leading specialist in food and agribusiness banking.
In addition to agribusiness finance and business support, Rabobank provides access to a host of specialists whose expertise ranges from succession planning and business management education through to commodity price and foreign exchange risk management, as well as 90 international food and agribusiness analysts and an impressive global network of farming clients in 38 countries.
2024 Nuffield Scholar
Global farm policy through family farm lens
As the assistant manager of her family's farming business, Anna Cotton will use her 2024 Nuffield Scholarship to help Australian family farms to build resilience and sustainability credentials.
Anna says she will focus on how economic and climatic influences have affected family farms in Europe, north and south America and New Zealand. She hopes to explore the influence government policy has on traceability, labour availability and agritourism – areas she says could deliver windfalls for Australian farmers.
Anna, whose scholarship is supported by Rabobank, believes these topics will become increasingly important in her own family business.
The family runs superfine Merinos at Kelvedon Estate, on Tasmania's east coast, selling their wool predominantly to Italian mills. They also operate a nine-hectare vineyard, from which they sell grapes under contract and produce wine under their own label.
"While things like climate variability and social responsibility can be seen as a threat to a farm business like ours, if managed correctly they can become an opportunity that will benefit individuals, as well as the wider agricultural community," Anna says.
She has chosen to visit countries that either have more stringent farm policies than Australia or are importing Australian produce.
"I'm looking forward to sitting down with farmers and policy makers to gain an understanding of the reasoning behind regulations and how they have impacted farmers and the measures they have adopted to remain resilient.
"I will also visit processors to understand what they need from farmers going forward and how we can continue to use technology and traceability to our advantage post-farmgate."
Anna says she is passionate about the Australian agricultural industry, in particular the wool and wine industries.
"I hope to assist in creating more opportunities that enable our agricultural industry to be resilient and sustainable to allow future generations to thrive."
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