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6 March 2017

Edition 136

In this issue

- Food and fibre is our future
- Routine calving induction limit dropped
- Latest on show at Irrigation Expo
- Farm world turns 50!
- Opportunity opens to go nuts
- Forage Value Index released
- Land rezoned to support agriculture
- Training, resources, field days
- Grants, funding & awards galore!
PLUS: Jobs, jobs, jobs!

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Food and fibre is our future

Agribusiness Gippsland met with over 140 influential agribusiness leaders on February 27 to discuss Food and Fibre - Our Future. The event featured presentations from a host of speakers, including our very own Paul Ford (Chair of Agribusiness Gippsland). Paul gave a compelling presentation on the importance of food and fibre within the Gippsland region, emphasising the fact that 23% of the State’s gross regional product comes from Gippsland. Other interesting facts coming from the day include:
  • 30% of the food produced in Australia is thrown out
  • 90% of Australia’s wheat product leaves our shores without added value
  • Australia is the seventh largest food exporter in the world
  • Globally food production could feed the world but 795 million people are starving
  • 80% of waste water in Israel is re-purposed
  • 3D food printing is coming!
  • A new wine bottle device can keep wine fresh and suggest food to match!
  • Coco Cola has introduced a ‘nutritious diet cola’
  • A plastic that is biodegradable in 24 weeks is on the market now
  • KFC have in-store facial recognition technology to predict mood and match food.
More? Jo Kingwill

Discount offered for women Gippy Agchat readers

Women and Leadership Australia are currently offering 20 Gippy AgChat readers the opportunity to attend the 2017 Australian Women’s Leadership Symposium for $400 off the standard rate. The Symposium, on July 20-21 in Melbourne, provides women a platform to explore leadership, life and career development.  Book here using code ASC2017 to obtain the discount. More? Visit

Names in the news

GippsDairy deputy chair Lauren Finger and her husband Simon have been named as The Weekly Times Coles 2016 Dairy Farmers of the Year.
MEANWHILE…Hallora dairy farmer Grant Williams has been elected GippsDairy chair.
ALSOHelen Anstis has left Baw Baw Shire Council to take up the position as Executive Director, Corporate with Service Victoria.

Nothing to be blue about with cheesy win!

Congratulations to Prom Country Cheese who took out the award for the best goat and sheep milk cheese for their Prom Country Cheese Venus Blue at the 2017 Australian Grand Dairy Awards. More? Click here

Don't channel surf for irrigation solutons

The Gippsland Irrigation Expo is the major irrigation event for dairying, horticulture and cropping in the Gippsland region.  Up to 600 people are expected to attend the free event at Sale Showgrounds on March 15 from 8.30am to 4.30pm. The day features the leading-edge and the latest in irrigation and drainage technologies, including solar pumps, whole farm telemetry and remote soil moisture monitoring. More?

Farm World turns 50!

Farm World celebrates its 50th anniversary at Lardner Park from Thursday March 30 to Sunday April 2. Farm World has over 900 exhibitors and an abundance of demonstrations and workshops that showcase the latest in farm machinery and technology.
The theme of ‘Food and Fibre’ will be celebrated with a fiesta of presentations, fresh produce, fibre demonstrations and sales in the main exhibition centre. The popular ‘Women in Agriculture’ luncheon will be held on March 30; the Commonwealth Bank breakfast, and the official opening luncheon on March 31.
The Farm World Equestrian Expo returns for its second year, with show jumping, dressage, mounted games, a breed village, exhibits, heritage draught horses, pony rides and more. This year sees the introduction ‘The BIG Gippsland Jersey Milk Off’ - one teat, one hand one minute! See Facebook for updates in the lead up to the event.
Farm World will be held at Lardner Park, 155 Burnt Store Rd, Lardner. More? Lardner Park Events 5626 1373

Plan aims to combat climate change

Victoria's Climate Change Adaptation Plan 2017-2020 was tabled in Parliament on February by the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D'Ambrosio. It lays out the priorities for the next four years in managing current impacts and preparing for long-term climate change risks. View the plan here

Dairy: we are on your side

The Dairy Farmer Central website contains information on a number of dairy farmer support programs, including:
  • Dairy Australia's Tactic for Tight Times and Taking Stock programs, which provide specialist one-to-one farm business support.
  • The Rural Financial Counselling Service, which provides free financial counselling to farmers experiencing financial hardship.
  • The Look Over the Farm Gate program, which provides community wellbeing workshops and community events.
  • Mental Health First Aid Training, which provides support on mental health issues

The Victorian Government has announced a $1.5m package for South Gippsland to support affected farmers and the community through more counselling services and grants. More? Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources 136 186

The Department of Human Services also provides a Farm Household Assistance Package for eligible farmers. More? Department of Human Services website

There are a number of other services that individuals can access if they are unsure of who to go to including:

The Leongatha Rural Financial Counselling Service provides financial counselling to farmers experiencing hardship. More? Rural Financial Counselling Service or Leongatha (Head Office) 5662 2566; Maffra 5147 0855; Bairnsdale 5152 1514

ABS Australia is offering dairy farmers a deferred payment plan on their purchases to help ensure herd improvement programs are not put at risk while milk prices are low. More? ABS Australia website (

Camps, sports and excursion fund: The Victorian Government has announced further funding to support dairy farmers with school aged children in 2017. A $148 million initiative, the Camps, Sports and Excursion Fund (CSEF) aims to insure Victorian students can participate in school trips and sporting activities. More? Click here

Land rezoned to support agriculture

South Gippsland Shire Council has adopted the South Gippsland Planning Scheme Amendment C108, to rezone land in Koonwarra to provide land for agricultural service industries to operate in close proximity to the nearby saleyard complex. Amendment C108 seeks to rezone land at 590 South Gippsland Highway and 2 Hogans Rd Koonwarra (immediately north of the Koonwarra Saleyards) from Farming Zone to Special Use Zone. It will also undertake a two lot subdivision along the proposed zone boundary. Council will now submit the Amendment to Minister for Planning, Richard Wynne, for approval. More? Click here

Bee in touch using latest technology!

The BeeConnected app allows for simple communication between growers and beekeepers, ensuring crop protection is conducted safely, responsibly and according to label requirements. The app enables crucial two-way communication between beekeepers, growers, consultants and spray contractors to be undertaken with ease. BeeConnected is available for free on smartphones and desktop computers, and is run by CropLife Australia in partnership with AHBIC. More?

Vegetable industry export strategy released

The Vegetable Industry Export Market Development Strategy 2020, delivered by Hort Innovation and developed in conjunction with AUSVEG, has been released. The strategy outlines methods to help growers and the industry export Australian vegetables to overseas markets, with the ultimate goal of increasing the value of vegetable exports to $315 million by 2020 - an increase of 40% on current levels. A summary of the report is available here

Western Port wants water stewards

Be at the forefront of water stewardship and develop a site water stewardship plan through the Biosphere Water Stewardship Program. The program aims to:
  • improve the water quality and ecology of local waterways
  • improve water security for water users within the biosphere
  • improve and maintain the ecological conditions of receiving waters.​
Assistance is available for training and to develop plans. Find out how to become a water steward here

Bass Coast Rural Land Use Strategy approved

New controls to manage the use of rural land in Bass Coast Shire now form part of the Bass Coast Planning Scheme. Amendment C140, which implements the Bass Coast Rural Land Use Strategy 2014, was recently approved by the Minister for Planning, completing what has been a priority project for Council since the commencement of the Strategy in 2010. The Amendment affects all land zoned Farming and Rural Activity across the Shire. More? Bass Coast Council’s Strategic Planning Team 5671 2211 or click here

Foraging for the best rye grass?

The Australian Forage Value Index (FVI) allows dairy farmers to make more informed, profitable decisions when choosing a perennial ryegrass for their farming system and forage needs. The FVI is an independently-analysed, industry-endorsed economic index based on seasonal dry matter production. The FVI was developed by Dairy Australia in association with Agriculture Victoria, Meat and Livestock Australia and the Australian Seed Federation. Watch a video on the FVI here. More? Click here

Gippsland Irrigation Expo gets masterclass

Dr Kelvin Montagu will deliver an interactive three-hour masterclass for vegetable growers and irrigation managers at the Gippsland Irrigation Expo on Wednesday March 15. The masterclass will look at managing water to minimise soil borne disease, maximising plant yield and quality, and systems performance. Sessions will run at 9am and 1pm. The event is free and includes morning or afternoon tea. Places are limited. Bookings are essential. More? Shayne Hyman 0417 330 081 or

Do you have Gippy news or events?

Gippy Agchat comes out on the first Monday of the month, with no issue released in January. Send agribusiness news or events that you would like publicised to our almost 10,000 readers to Madeline Toner at:

Watch the weather

The Bureau of Meteorology’s monthly Climate and Water Outlook video covers rainfall, stream flow and temperature for the period March-May and indicates that there will be below average rainfall over the period and the temperature above average. Watch the outlook here

Connect with horticulture at Hort Connections

Registrations are now open for Hort Connections 2017, an event that combines the National Horticulture Convention and PMA Fresh Connections, and brings the entire horticulture supply chain together. Hort Connections 2017 will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre from May 15-17. Businesses looking to be a part of Hort Connections 2017 can download the Exhibitor Registration Brochure and submit forms to Early bird rates for Hort Connections 2017 close on March 17. More? View the delegate registration brochure or visit the Hort Connections website

Study to document action against weeds and pests

The Victorian Government, in collaboration with community pest management groups for blackberry, gorse, serrated tussock and rabbits, is undertaking a Systems Mapping Study that uses photovoice to document stories and experiences. The study is seeking images and stories in response to:
  • What motivates efforts to control blackberry, gorse, serrated tussock or rabbits?
  • What hinders efforts to control blackberry, gorse, serrated tussock or rabbits and how do you overcome the hindrance?
  • What are your ideas for community action to control blackberry, gorse, serrated tussock or rabbits?
Stories can be from 1-300 words and will be accepted until March 31. More? or

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If you need to target Gippsland's agri-community and the services they use, consider highly targeted Gippyagchat for your advertising. Not only do you get access to almost 10,000 readers, you'll also get the satisfaction of supporting Agribusiness Gippsland, the region's not-for-profit group helping support our important ag sector. Want to get some ad traction? More?
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Is your town legendairy?

Nominations are now open for towns wanting to become Australia’s Legendairy Capital. One finalist town from each of Australia’s eight dairy regions will receive a $2500 grant to invest in a community project. Regional winners will go on to secure the coveted title of Australia's Legendairy Capital 2017 and receive a further grant of $7500 for its nominated community project. Nominations close April 10. More? Visit:

If you’re a woman with a passion for horses…

who is looking for adventure and would love to travel… then join Mirboo North’s Jeanette White of Wise Women Ride, for a horse-centred travel experience in Montana and Wyoming USA from June 15-July 2. More?

Move from surviving to thriving

Local livestock farmers can learn to take their enterprise from surviving to thriving at a number of events being run across East Gippsland. Special guest speaker, Nigel Kerin, NSW Farmer of the Year 2008, will share the keys to his successful balance between profit, lifestyle, healthy environment and happy families. Events will be held:
  • March 28 from 9am-2pm at the Exhibition Centre, 8 Clark St, Orbost
  • March 28 from 6-9pm at Duart Homestead, 20 McLean St, Maffra
  • March 29 from 9.30am-2.30pm at Bengworden Hall, Bengworden Rd, Bengworden
  • March 30 at the Delegate Country Club, 3074 Delegate Rd, Delegate
More? Emma Orgill (Bengworden/Orbost/Delegate) 5154 2867 or or Carmen Lee (Maffra) 0407 512 490 or

Agricultural innovation - capture the opportunities

ABARES Outlook 2017 is Australia’s premier economic forum for the agriculture sector. Delegates will hear from leading international and national speakers and producers over two comprehensive days exploring the theme Innovation in agriculture – capturing the opportunities. Be part of the leading forum in Canberra on March 7-8. More? ABARES Events Team 02 6272 2303 or or phone or Outlook 2017 website

Help protect the clean, green peninsula

Mornington Peninsula Shire is calling for community input to develop a plan to work with residents and businesses to protect the Shire’s clean, green and natural environment by reducing carbon emissions and being better prepared to cope with changing environmental conditions in the future. The community can participate by:
  • Taking a 5-10 minute survey before March 21
  • Visiting a chatterbox trailer in local area
  • Attending a workshop to help plan for the future.
More? Visit or Mornington Peninsula Shire 5950 1000 or

Thinking of going a bit nutty?

A hazelnut and truffle growing and marketing seminar will be held in Gembrook Community Centre on Saturday April 1 from 10am-2.30pm, followed by a farm walk on a local hazelnut grove and truffiere. Presenters include Colin Carter of Hazelnut Nursery Propagators/Trufficulture; Noel Fitzpatrick of Truffle Harvest Australia and Ben Barrow of Carboor Farms. The seminar covers growing requirements, pollination issues, main varieties and compatible pollinisers, industry overview, cultural practices, maintenance issues, harvesting, marketing and expected return on investment figures.
The cost of the seminar is $149. A light lunch will be provided.  Registration is essential at More? Noel 0423 411 408

Build a remarkable work place

Mandy Johnson, best-selling author and business adviser, will lead a series of presentations on innovative techniques to solve recruitment and retention problems within dairy businesses, aiming to increase profitability and to assist in achieving business goals. Sessions will run in:
  • Warragul on March 14
  • Maffra on March 14
  • Leongatha on March 15.
More? Leah Maslen 5624 3900 or

Gippsland Jobs Fair comes to Morwell

Local jobseekers will have an opportunity to speak with businesses about current and upcoming employment vacancies at the Gippsland Jobs Fair on Friday March 24 from 2-8pm at Kernot Hall, Morwell. Local and national businesses, employment providers and industry bodies in Gippsland will exhibit at the eventexhibitors. Entry is free.
Businesses are sought to exhibit at the event. More? Geoff Hill 0499 004 299 or

Make a day of sustainable farming

The Mardan-Mirboo North Landcare is offering unique on-farm workshops that will teach participants how to make farms more resilient, productive and competitive. Experts in farm planning, soil nutrition, water, animals, trees, farm-gate sales and marketing and more will attend. Workshops run from 9.30am-3.30pm including:
  • Small commercial farm workshop on Sunday March 19 on an award winning organic garlic farm of just 10 acres. This workshop will focus on business planning for profit, farm-gate sales and soil nutrition. Guest speaker is Graeme Salt, founder and CEO Nutri-Tech Solutions, soil nutrition expert, author of “Nutrition Rules”
  • Lifestyle farm seminar on April 30 with a special focus on small scale stock, fruit, vegetable raising and eco-houses and guest speaker Tino Carnevale, presenter on Gardening Australia from ‘The Vegie Patch” in Hobart Botanic Garden.
Bookings are required More? Mardan Mirboo North Landcare Group 5668 8188

Insects bring benefits from choice!

Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority (CMA) will run a native vegetation insectarium farm walk on Friday March 24 from 10:30am-12:30pm at 11 Fielder Rd, Cockatoo. Native insectariums can increase beneficial insect populations by supplying an alternative food source and providing free integrated pest management (IPM). Participants will observe the trial site six months after planting, and hear the IPM monitoring results. Speakers include Karen Thomas from Port Phillip and Westernport CMA and Linda Thomson from the University of Melbourne. Register here. More? Karen Thomas 0427 480 170 or

Hort women offered leadership support

All women currently employed in the Australian horticulture sector are invited to apply for scholarship funding that has been provisioned for participation in a range of leadership development courses. Places on the co-funded scholarship program are limited and Expressions of Interest close March 10. More? Alistair Young 9270 9032 or or click here

Routine calving induction limit dropped

Australian Dairy Farmers (ADF) have revised the routine calving induction limit to a maximum of 12% of the herd, down from 15% in 2016. The new target was set after reviewing 2016 induction data and following consultation with dairy farmers, vets and processors through the Calving Induction Steering Group, the Australian Dairy Farmers (ADF) Animal Health and Welfare Policy Advisory Group, the ADF National Council, ADF Board and the Australian Dairy Industry Council (ADIC) Board. More? Click here

Free webinars offered to agribusinesses

Agri-Business Development Initiative (ABDI) is running a series of free one hour webinars including:
  • March 8: How to effectively tackle succession
  • March 22: Growing your business using external investment (Part II)
  • April 5: How to stand out in the marketplace – the characteristics of a unique agribusiness
Previous webinars can be viewed online. More? Click here

Harvest the high country

Landcare will visit innovative food producers in the high country who embrace sustainable systems in a tour from May 9-11.
  • Day 1: McIvor Farms-free range pigs and regenerative farming; biodynamic wines at Pennyweight Winery
  • Day 2: Nightingale Bros Alpine Produce Apples, Wandiful Produce for lunch and chestnuts and hazelnuts with Megan Hughes, and Andrew Pedrick’s green tea plantation.
  • Day 3: Dr Jason Trompf and Hannah Marriott sharing leading research in how to manage climate variability and optimise lamb survival.
RSVP by March 31 with payment of $325 (Shared accommodation, breakfasts and dinner and two lunches. More? Jenny O’Sullivan 0419 153 377 or

Sniff out new opportunities with nuts and truffles

A new Melbourne based start-up business is seeking entrepreneurial farmers wanting to diversify into nut crops and de-risk on-farm income. More? Colin Carter

Program to grow Gippsland business

The Growing Gippsland Business program is designed for small groups of 10 participants and comprises five three-hour workshops, five individual and private mentoring sessions. Workshops run from 9.30am-12.30pm at Baw Baw Shire Council Offices, 33 Young St, Drouin program and include:
  • Building your business April 20
  • Funding avenues and financial analysis May 18
  • Making the most of talent and team June 22
  • Management capabilities July 20
  • Digital Engagement August 24
The participation fee of $145 includes workbooks, workshops, mentoring and tools and templates. Registrants must commit to the full program of workshops. Register here by March 24. More? Stacey Clark 5624 2866

Make a splash on a water catchment board

Applications are now open for the catchment management authority boards. Applications close on April 1.  Apply at: Get on Board

Help sought mapping Bass Coast’s biolinks

Bass Coast Shire Council is seeking community input on its plan to map the existing areas of native bushland across the Shire, and identify linkages that will provide key environmental corridors. Council is working in partnership with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA), who have mapped the health and location of native vegetation in the Shire and identified proposed biolinks. Community workshops are being held to gather feedback on these maps from 12-3 pm on:
  • Thursday, March 9 at Kernot Hall, Kernot
  • Friday March 17 at the State Coal Mine, Wonthaggi
  • Wednesday March 29 at Phillip Island Winery, 414 Berrys Beach Rd, Ventnor
A light lunch will be served at each event. Please RSVP.
More? David Bateman 5678 2335 or

Make a sustainable difference

The City of Greater Dandenong is seeking expressions of interest for a new Sustainability Reference Committee that is being established to assist Council in the implementation of the Greater Dandenong Sustainability Strategy 2016-30. The committee will help Greater Dandenong to become one of the most sustainable cities in Australia. Expressions of interest are due by March 27. More? Click here

Feast on the East at “Hooked on Lakes Entrance”

Local food service businesses will showcase the region’s local wild caught seafood at Hooked on Lakes Entrance, at the Lakes Entrance Foreshore Reserve from 10am on Sunday March 12. Pop-up food stalls will sell Thai style fish cakes, seafood hotpots, scallop pies, whiting and beach banana tacos together with more traditional style fish and chips. Local beers, wines, ciders and juices, together with other local food products will also be available in a relaxed picnic like atmosphere.
There will also be some fish filleting and fish preparation tips from experts, and cooking demonstrations by well-known Peruvian chef Alejendro Savaria from Pastuso in Melbourne and Matt McCarthy from Chateau Yering in the Yarra Valley.
Access to the food stalls and bar will be $4 per person (children $2). Fishing clinics, demonstrations and cook off are free. More? Dr Nicola Watts 0408 351 475 or

Improve your dairy business performance

The Gardiner Dairy Foundation, together with the three Victorian Regional Development Programs - including GippsDairy, is offering farm business scholarships to Victorian farmers. The scholarships provide further training in risk management, business acumen and leadership. There are ten scholarships state-wide for mid-career dairy farmers:
  • 1 x Australian Rural Leadership Program
  • 6 x Institute of Business Owners – Australian Owner Manager Program
  • 3 x Rabobank Executive Development Program
More? Gardiner Dairy Foundation 8621 2900 or or click here

Want to export pink ladies?

Australian companies interested in exporting Pink Lady® branded apples in 2017 need to apply for a current export licence through Pink Lady Australia and attend a compulsory meeting at the APAL office on March 8 from 12-3pm. A light lunch provided. Please RSVP. More? Andrew Mandemaker 9329 3511  or

Have you heard about Herd17?

Herd17, on March 22-23 in Bendigo, will discuss developments in genetic improvement, herd test, data and related fields. It also provides networking and professional development opportunities. Conference speakers include:
  • Marj Faust on skills, attitude and change, drawing upon her experience with globally competitive bull companies Genus ABS Global
  • Andrew Fear, of LIC, NZ, sharing experiences of herd recording during New Zealand’s milk price volatility, a journey that is being replicated in Australia.
To register click here. More? Laura Calder 9835 7627 or

The Don is on again!

The annual Don Campbell Memorial Study Tour will visit the dairy belt of northern Tasmania from March 20-24. The tour looks at Tasmanian farming systems with a focus on managing livestock systems. Highlights include:
  • A unit of competence from the NCDE’s Certificate IV in Agriculture AHCAGB402A: Analyse and interpret production data
  • Visits to different farming systems
  • A great social experience and chance to develop networks.
The trip has been heavily subsidised by GippsDairy. The cost to participants is $165 payable to GippsDairy which will include airfares, bus travel and accommodation; other costs include an enrolment fee payable to NCDE, lunches and dinners. More? Irene Baker 5624 3900 or

Forum grows and grows!

A Gippsland Growers’ Forum will be held on Thursday March 9 from 2-5.30pm at the Criterion Hotel, Cnr York and Macalister Sts, Sale. The agenda includes:
  • Official launch of Gippsland’s vegetable capacity building project by Richard Elkington, Regional Development Australia - Gippsland
  • The VegPRO initiative with Sophie Lapsley, Vegetable Industry Education and Training Coordinator
  • Increasing value from brassica, carrot and onion food loss/waste - CSIRO
  • Do-it-yourself biosecurity with Callum Fletcher, AUSVEG
  • Gippsland Region Agrifood Employment Project with Dr Nicola Watts
  • Hort Innovation’s Vegetable Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) workshop
The event will be followed by networking with food and drinks provided. More? Shayne Hyman 0417 330 081 or

Festival proves sustainable!

The Southern Gippsland Sustainability Festival returns to the historic State Coal Mine, Garden Street, Wonthaggi on Sunday April 9 from 10am-2pm. Potential exhibitors can register and not-for-profit organisations will not be charged a site fee. More? Roslyn Jenzen 5951 3317 or or or click here

Save the date for vegie innovation!

East Gippsland Vegetable Innovation Days will be held in Lindenow on May 3-4 at Bulmer Farms on Main Rd, Lindenow. The event, with seedling producer Boomaroo as major sponsor, features new, innovative and favourite varieties growing in demonstration sites, an undercover event hub and an industry networking function in the Lindenow Hall on Wednesday May 3. More? Shayne Hyman 0417 330 081 or

Show has something for everyone

The Pakenham Show will be held on March 18 at PB Ronald Reserve, cnr Henry St and John St, Pakenham. The Show features sheep, goats and poultry; giant pumpkin competition; ferret racing; dog high-jump; paper plane/gumboot throwing; iron man/woman competition; Alan Ridley’s chainsaw sculpture and more! More? Show secretary 0408 117 709 or

Be a Landcare winner and walk on the green carpet

The 2017 Landcare Green Carpet Gala is being held to celebrate 30 years of Landcare in Gippsland. The event will take place on Sunday April 30 from 11am at the Heyfield Wetlands. Enjoy a paddock to plate lunch with MC Gerard Callinan. Tickets are limited and booking is essential. More? Kathleen Brack 1300 094 262 or click here

There are lots of reasons to move to once a day!

Full-season milking once-a-day (OAD) provides an alternative for farmers wanting a change of lifestyle, having difficulty accessing staff and/or with limited farm infrastructure. A session at David Macalister’s Farm, 296 Princes Hwy, Orbost on Thursday March 23 from 11am-2pm will cover: 
  • Challenges and advantages of OAD milking
  • How systems adjust to OAD milking over a number of seasons
  • How OAD milking changes feedbase, animal health and people management.
BBQ lunch provided by Murray Goulburn. Please RSVP by March 20. More? Louise 0428 573 909 or

Hoo has some time to count owls?

Friends of Mt Cannibal Flora and Fauna Reserve host Ed McNabb as he gives a presentation on owls and discusses the district owl survey from 7.30pm on March 30 at Tynong North Community Hall , cnr Clark and McInnes Rds, Tynong North. Survey activities include listening for owl calls, locating nesting and roosting sites and learning all things ‘owl’. Everyone is welcome. More?

Improve business without leaving home

The Rural Business Collective is an online rural community aiming for business excellence. The collective provides free and paid-for tools, mentoring, bootcamps and tours. More?

Walk in the orchard this autumn

Autumn Future Orchards walks feature Dale Goldy from Stemilt, one of the largest fruit companies in Washington State, USA and AgFirst’s Craig Hornblow the walk will be held in Gippsland on March 23. More? Angus Crawford 9329 3511 or

Leverage China relationships and experience

In May 2017, the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry will run its fourth China business immersion experience. The Victoria Jiangsu Business Placement Program brings business people from China's Jiangsu province together with Victorian business owners and senior staff to:
  • create long-term partnerships with Chinese companies
  • pursue new contracts, develop exports and build strategic relationships
  • showcase Victorian goods, services and technology to Chinese businesses, buyers and investors.
More? Olivia Bowden 8662 5343 or

Horse and tractors put horsepower to the test

The Korumburra Working Horse and Tractor Rally on March 19-20 at Morrison Park, South Gippsland Hwy, Nyora, features vintage and veteran tractors, working horses, engines and farm equipment. Entry: adults $12, under 16 free, weekend pass $18. More? Jackie Fredrickson 0484 944 598 or click here

You’ll go crazy for the…

2017 Australian Nut Conference in Melbourne from March 27-29. Sponsorship opportunities are available. More? Chaseley 0409 707 806 or

Pocket the Fert$mart savings

The West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) is encouraging farmers in the Macalister Irrigation District (MID) and Jack and Albert rivers catchment areas to cut fertiliser budgets by signing up for Fert$mart courses. Participants will:
  • get support to complete soil and effluent pond testing
  • receive one-on-one farm visits
  • join group workshops with local farmers
  • create a nutrient management plan for your dairy business plus on-farm advice on actions to reduce nutrient runoff.
More? Click here

FSC publishes revised chain of custody standards

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) has released revised chain-of-custody (CoC) standards: FSC-STD-40-004 V3-0 and FSC-STD-20-011 V4-0. The revised standards will become effective on April 1. More? Click here

Stall holders sought for pet expo

Family friendly stallholders with an animal focus are sought to take part in Latrobe City Council’s Pets in the Valley Expo at Old Gippstown, Moe on Sunday April 9. Register interested by March 24. More? Kevin 5127 3082 or

Australians urged to extinguish fire ants

The Invasive Species Council is holding fire ant forums with US fire ant expert Robert Puckett, who has a clear message for Australians – failure to eradicate the current infestation of fire ants in Queensland will eventually have devastating consequences for your entire country. The forum will be held in Melbourne on March 23. Book here

Flood study goes lower

The WGCMA is conducting a new flood study on the lower Thomson and Latrobe Rivers. Probability theory will be applied to understand the relative contributions of Macalister River, the Thomson above Denison and the Latrobe above Kilmany to flooding and the influence of high water levels within Lake Wellington. More? Wayne Gilmour 1300 094 262

Applications open for Marketer of the Year

Nominations are now open for the sixth annual PMA-Produce Plus Marketer of the Year Award, which recognises outstanding achievement in the marketing of fresh fruit, flowers and vegetables in Australia and New Zealand. The Award will be presented at the inaugural Hort Connections conference and trade show in Adelaide on 15-17 May. Entries close 31 March 2017. Self-nominations and nominations by third parties are welcome. Submit entries at:

Celebration goes pear-shaped – as intended!

Toora Pear Party, on Sunday March 12 at Mill St, Toora, celebrates all things pear. The day features a range of stalls, music, talks and demonstrations on pruning, grafting, bee keeping, gardening, and more. Entry by gold coin donation. More? Meryl 0428 864 520 or

Harvest milk for better quality

Cups on Cups off is a two-day training course designed by Dairy Australia and delivered by the National Centre for Dairy Education Australia (NCDE) will help dairy farmers achieve best practice in milk harvesting, with an emphasis on detection, treatment and prevention of clinical mastitis. The course will run in:
  • Leongatha on April 19, 26
  • Warragul on April 19, 26
  • MID on April 21, 28
More? Louise Sundermann 0428 573 909 or

Don't be confused by the baffler subsidy

The South East Trawl Fishing Industry Association has secured a $500 subsidy for each operator installing bafflers to minimise interaction with seabirds.  The rebate is paid for inspection-checked bafflers. More?

If vegetables could talk…

AUSVEG delivers communications about levy-funded R&D for the vegetable and potato industries, including Vegetables Australia and Potatoes Australia magazines, the Weekly Update e-newsletter, the Vegenotes series, InfoVeg services, etc. AUSVEG is conducting a 10-minute survey about these communications. Levy-paying growers and industry members who take part in the survey can go in the running to win a pack of four John Deere wrench and socket sets (valued over $1000). Take the survey here

Product swaps on one well-viewed map

More than 4000 people have viewed the Google-map-based listing of produce swaps across Gippsland prepared for Agribusiness Gippsland by Dr Graham Moore from the University of Melbourne. You can view and edit the map at:

Mash it up at Thorpdale Potato Festival

The Thorpdale Potato Festival will be held on Sunday, March 12 at Thorpdale Recreation Reserve, Stockdales Rd, Thorpdale and features a myriad of events and activities including a market, photography competition, hessians on the field sack race, potatoes and more. More?

Forthcoming markets 

Market When Where More?
Bairnsdale Boot Market 3rd Saturday Great Alpine Rd, Bairnsdale  
Bittern Sunday market Every Sunday Bittern Railway Station, Frankston-Flinders Rd, Bittern 0409 417 463
Bruthen Village Market 4th Saturday Mechanics Hall, Bruthen  
Churchill Island Farmers Market 4th Saturday Churchill Island Visitor Centre, Phillip Island 5664 0096
Coal Creek Farmers Market 2nd Saturday Coal Creek Community Park and Museum, Korumburra 0459 629 000
Drouin Craft and Produce Market 3rd Saturday Drouin Civic Park 5625 3360
East Gippsland Farmers Market 1st Saturday Bairnsdale Secondary College Oval, Bairnsdale  
Emerald Community Craft and Produce Market 3rd Sunday Emerald Community House 0419 345 750
Gembrook Market 4th Sunday Puffing Billy Railway Station 0437 664 121
Gippsland Heritage Park Market 3rd Saturday Gippsland Heritage Park, Moe 5127 3082
Heyfield community market 1st Saturday Dr John Graves Memorial 5148 2780
Inverloch Farmers Market 3rd Sunday The Glade. Inverloch 5664 0096
Jindivick Market 1st Saturday Jindivick Harvest Kitchen, 1070 Jacksons Track, Jindivick 5628 5227
Jumbunna Bush Market 1st Sunday The Main Hall, Jumbunna 5657 3253
Kongwak Market Sundays Kongwak General Store 0417 142 478
Koowee Community Market 2nd Sunday Cochrane Park, Rossiter Rd, Koo Wee Rup 0418 289 847
Lakes Entrance Surf Club Foreshore Market 1st Sunday The Esplanade, Lakes Entrance 0407 098 805
Lardner Park Market November 20 Lardner Park, Warragul 5976 3266 
Loch Market 2nd Sunday (Oct-April) Loch Village Railway Station, Loch 0447 398 822
Longwarry Fire Brigade Market 1st Sunday Bennett St, Longwarry 0419 158 946
Lucknow Market 4th Sunday Howitt Park, Bairnsdale 5152 4662
Maffra Variety and Farmers market 1st Sunday Johnson St, Maffra 0408 057 772
Mallacoota Artisans and Produce Market 1st Saturday Mudbrick Building, Develling Drive, Mallacoota 0422 988 890
Metung Farmers Market 2nd Saturday Village Green, Metung  
Mirboo North Community Market last Saturday of month Baromi Park in Ridgway (Strez Highway) Mirboo North 5668 2465
Mornington Racecourse Market 2nd Sunday Mornington Racecourse  
Paynesville Market 2nd Sunday Gilsenan Reserve, Paynesville  
Prom Country Farmers Market 3rd Saturday Main St. Foster 0407 543 371
Red Hill Community Market  1st Saturday Arthurs Seat Rd, Red Hill  
Rokeby Market 2nd Saturday Rokeby Reserve, Main Rd, Rokeby 5626 8523
Sale 3rd Saturday Sale Showgrounds  
South Gippsland Farmers Market 1st Saturday Koonwarra Memorial Park 0408 619 182
Stratford Variety and Farmers Market  4th Sunday Apex Park, Stratford 0408 057 772
Surf Club Market 1st Sunday Foreshore Rotunda, Lakes Entrance  
Toora market 2nd Sunday Jetty Rd, Toora 5688 1237
Traralgon Farmers Market 4th Saturday Kay St Gardens – Kay St, Traralgon 0409 232 715
Warragul farmer’s Market 3rd Saturday Civic Park, Warragul 0435 757 047
Yarragon community craft and produce market 4th Saturday Yarragon Public Hal 5634 2209

Intrepid retreat to empower young Landcarers

West Gippsland CMA is hosting Victoria’s first ever Intrepid Retreat on May 13-14. The carefully designed program will empower young people and Landcare groups to better understand youth engagement and leadership and how to make a difference in areas that matter to your group, community and landscape. Applications open soon. More?

Autumn flowers go on show

The 56th annual Welshpool Autumn Flower Show will be held on March 10-11 at the Welshpool Hall. The Show acknowledges the local farming community and the harvest of produce and flowers. Dahlias will be a feature. Classes on photography, cut flowers, pot plants, vegetables and home produce are offered. Exhibitors are welcome. More? Fran Grylls 5684 1376

There’s an incentive for coming to this session

An interactive session on Thursday March 30 from 11am-1pm in the Training Room, Level 1, 64 Victor Cres, Narre Warren, will discuss the Research and Development Tax Incentive programme including:
  • general knowledge and benefits of the R&D Tax Incentive programme
  • eligibility criteria
  • registration forms.
There will be an opportunity for direct discussion with government representatives at the end of the session. To register click here

Do business in a digital world

A Business in a digital world short workshop on Wednesday April 26 from 6-8pm at the Drouin Civic Centre, 33 Young St, Drouin will teach participants understand online advertising, search engines, websites and social media through practical exercises and real-life examples. The cost is $20. For bookings go to the Business Victoria website. More? Stacey Clark 5624 2411 or

Don’t miss the small business bus

The small business bus offers friendly, professional assistance from an information officer and specialist advice from an experienced business mentor and will visit:
  • Cowes, 91-97 Thompson Ave on March 7
  • Wonthaggi, 71-73 McBride Avenue on March 6
  • Dandenong at Harmony Square, 225 Lonsdale St on March 15
  • Springvale at Multicultural Place, cnr Buckingham and Balmoral Ave on March 16
Sessions are strictly limited so advance bookings are required. More? Business Victoria 13 22 15 or

Festival celebrates local produce

The Tinamba Food and Wine Festival will be held on Sunday April 23 from 11am-4pm outside the Tinamba Hotel, Tinamba-Seaton Road, Tinamba. The festival showcases local wines, local produce and cuisine and local music. Cost: $10 per adult, including a souvenir wine glass. Under 18s free. More? Kellie Willis 0429 329 989 or click here

Enjoy a sustainable breakfast

Join other local business owners over a hot breakfast to hear business profiles of participants, their interest in sustainability and new initiatives to reduce operating costs at a sustainable business breakfast from 7.30-9.30am on Thursday April 27 at Woodlands Golf Club, 109 White St, Mordialloc. Cost $25. Register here. More? Kingston Council 1300 653 356

Local flood knowledge sought

The WGCMA is seeking local knowledge to input into a new floodplain management strategy. More?

Grab a couple of friends for the pear festival!

Friends of Toora Heritage Pear Orchard inc. presents the Annual Toora Pear Party on Sunday March 12 from 10am-4pm at Toora Heritage Pear Orchard, Mill St, Toora. There will be music, stalls, talks and demonstrations on pruning, grafting, bee keeping, herbs and other gardening tips, children's activities (supervised), face painting, circle dancing and ukulele plus singalong, pick your own pears $6 (bags supplied), pear cider available. More? Meryl 0428 864 520 or

Save the date for economic development

Economic Development Australia (EDA) and the Baw Baw Shire Council are hosting the EDA Victorian State Conference to be held in Warragul on March 8-10. More? Baw Baw Shire Economic Development team 5624 2411

It’s more than just good scones!

The Country Women's Association Pakenham Branch meets monthly for friendship, fellowship, and fund raising to help local organisations and/or people in need. There are speakers at monthly meetings, bus trips and monthly craft get-togethers. The next meeting is on April 3 from 9.30am-12.30pm at Guide Hall, 31 Henry St, Pakenham. Also craft days on the third Wednesday of the month (March 15) More? Heather Kleesh 5940 4481 or

Business mentors on offer

Councils across Gippsland, in conjunction with the Small Business Mentoring Service, are offering free business mentoring sessions in:  
  • Cowes Customer Service Centre Interview Room, 91-97 Thompson Avenue on April 4, June 6, September 5, November 14
  • Grantville Transaction Centre Community Room, 1504-1510 Bass Hwy on July 4
  • Mornington, Cnr Queen and Main Sts on March 8, April 19
  • Pakenham, Toomah Community Centre, 15 Golden Green St on March 28
  • Wonthaggi, 76 McBride Ave on March 21, May 2, August 1, October 3
More? Visit the Small Business Mentoring Service

Help is available to start your business

The Start Your Business series, that provides a practical overview of the fundamentals of starting a small business, has begun but late bookings are welcome. Sessions cost $20 and run in the Mornington Peninsula Shire Office at 2 Queen St, Mornington: More? Mornington Peninsula Business 5950 1446 or

Capitalise on the international online retail market

Food Innovation Australia Ltd (FIAL) and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science are presenting a workshop for Australian food and beverage businesses looking to capitalise on opportunities in the international e-commerce market. The workshop on Tuesday, March 21 from 8:30am-2pm at Moorooduc Coolstores, Cnr Moorooduc Hwy and Eramosa Rd, Moorooduc. includes:
  • Insights into the international e-commerce market, cultural intelligence, high demand food sectors, marketing strategies, protecting your brand and IP
  • Managing payments, logistics solutions and warehousing, price points, latest policy changes in regulation and duties
  • Support and services for Australian exporters
More? Click here

Fire brigade celebration promises to be a hot night!

Mornington Fire Brigade is celebrating its 100 year anniversary with a cocktail party on Saturday, March 25 from 7-11pm at Mornington Fire Brigade, 859 Nepean Hwy, Mornington. The local community can join the event which features food and beverages, live music and entertainment, lucky draw prizes, community storytelling, brigade memorabilia on display, courtesy bus for Mornington residents. The cost is $75 per head. Book here. More? Mornington Fire Brigade 5975 2203 or

Build you business

Grow your business in a sustainable way with tailored advice from the Australian Small Business Mentoring Advisory Services Programme at a workshop from 5.30-7.30 pm on Wednesday March 29 at in the Training Room, Level 1, 64 Victor Cres, Narre Warren. Participants will receive: 
  • diagnostic assessment of current business operations
  • business planning advice that meets identified needs 
  • assistance with marketing plans
  • advice on new markets
  • referrals to other providers.
The cost is $25. More? Click here or Anthony Turner

Small grants open to dairy communities

The 2017 Gardiner Dairy Foundation/FRRR Working in Dairy Communities Small Grants Program is open until March 17. For more information click here

Looking for a grant?

The free government Grant Finder helps find grants and assistance programmes that are relevant to your own business. More?

Dairy scientists offered travel grant

Dairy Australia's dairy science travel grants offer $6000 to allow early career research or service providers to attend the American Dairy Science Association annual meeting on June 25-28. The 2017 theme is Integrating Dairy Science Globally. Click here for more information and here to apply. More? Dairy Australia 9694 3777 or

Support offered for Aus-India trade

The Australia-India Council offers grants of between $20K and $50K for projects which aim to promote long-term contact and cooperation between Australia and India. The council gives priority to projects in science focusing on agriculture, resources, energy and waste management. Deadline 27 April. More? click here

Producers and processors can farm together!

Applications are open for the $14.9m federal Farming Together program, a two-year campaign for primary producers and processors to collaborate and claim marketplace power. Assistance is offered for product research and development, marketing, capital-raising, packaging, logistics, and exporting non-ongoing consultancies. More? or 1800 005 555

Fund supports regional events growth

The Regional Events Fund is a $20 million grant program designed to support the growth of events in regional Victoria. The Fund is administered by Visit Victoria, Destination Gippsland and Destination Phillip Island and aims to extend the length of visitation and economic yield. Three tiers of funding are available:
  • between $100,000 and $500,000
  • between $20,000 and $100,000
  • up to $20,000
Intending applicants are encouraged to discuss their proposal with their Regional Tourism Board to test alignment with regional visitor economy strategies. More? Click here or

Dairy women offered travel scholarship

The Power of Women in Dairying scholarship offers $4000-$5000 for a woman to attend the World Dairy Expo at Madison in the US from October 3-7. Deadline: March 17.  More? Di Malcolm 0419 483 763

Energy assessment grants open now

Small and medium sized businesses can apply for energy assessment funding under the new Sustainability Victoria Business - Boosting Productivity program:
  • Energy Assessment Grants for businesses with less than 200 employees, spending more than $20,000 per annum on energy bills. Grants are offered at two funding levels - up to $2000 for a basic energy assessment and up to $6000 for a detailed energy assessment on a matched funding ($1:$1) basis. Successful applicants can also access a $3000 bonus to help implement energy efficiency assessment recommendations
  • Industry Capability Grants of up to $150,000 to strengthen and build business capabilities in energy efficiency. Expressions of interest open soon.
Applications close September 2018. More? Click here

Agri-supply chain targeted for assistance

The Australian Government’s Supply Chain Facilitation Assistance program offers free access to a skilled advisor to strengthen supply chains and improve access new markets. You must have been trading in at least three successive years with turnover (or operating expenditure) in the current, or one of the last two financial years, of more than $1.5m ($750,000 for applicants from remote or northern Australia). Producers not meeting eligibility rules can still register for information events. More? Phone 13 28 46

Funding available for sustainable agriculture

Veski has announced a 2nd round of the Veski sustainable agriculture fellowships, calling for Expressions of Interest from collaborative teams interested in addressing critical issues in the agricultural sector across Australia. Expressions of Interest close March 9. More? or

Waste infrastructure grants now available

Councils and industry can now apply for grants of up to $500,000 for innovative projects that create jobs and help keep more waste out of landfill. The $7 million fund aims to encourage new collection, sorting or processing infrastructure that targets organic waste, plastic and E-waste. Applications close March 31. More? Click here

Fund supports business growth and jobs creation

The Latrobe Valley Economic Facilitation Fund of up to $10m is offered to support business growth and new job creation as the Gippsland region shifts out of coal production. More? Click here

Develop exports markets

Export Market Development Grants help small-medium businesses to develop export markets. The Austrade grants reimburse up to 50% of eligible export promotion expenses above $5000 provided that total expenses are at least $15,000. The program can provide up to eight grants to eligible applicants. More? Visit

Boost trade with China

Funding is available to primary producers, learning institutes and rural/regional associations to boost trade with China through the Australia-China Agricultural Cooperation Agreement administered by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. There is funding of up to $69,649 is available to fund projects in Australia and/or China or to help cover travel costs for trade missions to China. Priority will be given to: ecommerce innovation; sustainable agricultural technology; sanitary and phytosanitary training; agricultural products processing and commodity production research. Deadline: March 10. More? Click here

Development grants support dairy communities

The Victorian Government is seeking applications for its Dairy Development Grants program, which aims to assist dairy farm businesses to improve productivity, competitiveness and resilience. The grant offers up to $5000 to implement on-farm infrastructure improvements that assist business rebuilding, restructure and production efficiencies. Grants are open until June 30 or until funds are fully allocated, whichever occurs first. More? Rural Finance 1800 260 425 or or click here

Stepping up the PASE to support exporters

The Package Assisting Small Exporters (PASE) is a $15 million grant program for small exporters administered by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. The PASE program funds activities aimed at improving market access for small exporters. Applications for Round 2 funding close at 5pm March 27. More? Click here

Grants make communities strong

Victoria’s Stronger Regional Communities invests in community-led initiatives and to drive change in regional and rural towns with grants of up to $50,000. Eligible applicants include businesses and for-profit organisations, local councils and not-for-profit community organisations. More? Click here

Biological and biophysics science grants on offer

The Australia and Pacific Science Foundation is offering up to $15,000/year for up to three years for projects in biological or biophysical sciences. Deadline: March 10. More?

Grow with nbn grants

The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA), in partnership with nbn, is awarding $150,000 in grants to organisations which are leveraging nbn™ network connectivity to grow. Grants will be awarded across three categories: business, community and education. More?

Research grants go up for grabs

The Hermon Slade Foundation offers grants of up to $30K/year for up to three years to support state institution or university research into improved systems of managing land, water, plants and animals to enhance the productivity and quality of produce, while conserving the natural environment, preserving biodiversity, avoiding pollution of soils and water, and enhancing human welfare. Deadline: March 10. More?

Move your business into the future

The Future Industries Manufacturing Program is a Victorian Government initiative offering grants of up to $500,000. Victorian businesses implementing new manufacturing technologies and processes that generate new jobs and provide a critical foundation for growth are eligible for the funding. There's a 3:1 funding requirement.

Government releases new funding opportunities

The Victorian Government has commenced a number of new funding programs including: the Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund (RJIF) and Food Source Victoria (FSV) grants, a $20m initiative aimed at supporting agri-food businesses to work together and with value chain partners to grow exports and create new jobs. Deadline June 30, 2019. More? Graham Scott 5116 7300 or

Smoko read...

Irrigators are reducing energy costs by switching to solar. Read more here

Red Hill shows what it’s got!

The Red Hill Show, one of the state’s most popular agricultural shows, will be held on Saturday, March 11 from 9.30am-5pm. The show also includes arts, crafts, flowers, entertainment and more. Cost: adult - $15; child - $10; concession - $10. More? Red Hill A and H Society Inc 0432 434 255 or or

Quote of the week

E. B. White: "A good farmer is nothing more nor less than a handy man with a sense of humus.”

How do you want to spend the vegie levy?

Vegetable growers are encouraged to attend consultation sessions on the vegetable industry’s Strategic Investment Plan to ensure the plan maximises the benefits from industry’s funding. A consultation session will be held on Thursday March 9 from 2-5pm at the Criterion Hotel, Cnr York and Macalister Sts, Sale. Please RSVP. More? AUSVEG 9882 0277 or

Need staff?

Connect with local job seekers via East Victoria Jobs Hub. Add a job at no cost and access a community of willing and active local candidates. Promote local opportunities on the web, mobile and social media. Access supporting information and useful links. More? Visit

JOBS: A free feature in GippyAGchat

Times being what they are, we are running free job ads. If you’re seeking work, or workers, please flick an email to and we’ll give you a free plug. No large files, no photos, no sales pitches and full contact details, please.
Rural Financial Counsellor sought by the Rural Financial Counselling Service Gippsland. This is a 12-month position for a fullt qualified person, with the possibility of renewal, depending on Government support. The position is basedin central Gippsland with clients mainly in the Wellington and East Gippsland Shires. $70K+ super. Applications close March 31. More? Kylie Holmes 0409 163 189 or
Fruit Fly Regional Coordinator wanted by Agribusiness Yarra Valley to work with the Yarra Valley Regional Governance Group and Agribusiness Yarra Valley to manage the implementation of the Yarra Valley Regional Action Plan for the management of Queensland Fruit Fly (QFF). The successful candidate requires knowledge of QFF and the horticulture of the Yarra Valley. Excellent project management and implementations skills, high level report writing, grant funding experience and communication skills are all essential for this position. Applications close Monday March 6 at 5pm. The key selection criteria and the Yarra Valley Regional QFF Plan are available at More? Kylie Ammerlaan 0491 141 008 or
Business Manager sought by Freshcare Limited to drive the operational aspects of the Freshcare on-farm assurance program. More?
Property maintenance worker wanted for approximately 30 hours per week from Wednesdays to Saturday mornings. Wednesday to Friday is outdoor work in garden. Jobs include mowing, planting and general outdoor cleaning. Saturday work is setting up for weekend events. A drivers licence or an ability to travel to work is essential. More? Peter
Senior Veterinarian sought by Traralgon Veterinary Centre (TVC), a busy regional mixed practice, with a varied caseload in large purpose built clinic, well equipped with the latest digital X-ray machines, portable ultrasounds, IM3 Dental machine, anaesthetic machines, and IDEXX diagnostics. TVC is seeking a highly motivated veterinarian to join our team of six vets and four nurses in a leadership role involving some clinical supervision and management of day-to-day operations. Send application letter and resume to
Experienced Dog Groomers sought by PETstock in Cranbourne and Pakenham to be responsible for: providing grooming services in store; coordinating the salon and clients; making client bookings; assisting floor staff; maintaining breed clip and brand/product knowledge; achieving and exceeding sales targets. This is a full time role but part time or casual work will be considered. More?
Animal Attendants sought by the Lost Dogs Home in Cranbourne to work on a part-time or casual basis to provide day-to-day care for the animals in the shelter. There are two type of work:
  • casual role with flexibility and availability essential as the shifts are weekdays, weekends and holiday periods.
  • Permanent Part time role Monday (8am-6:30pm), Tuesday (8am-6:30pm), Saturday (7am-1pm) and Sunday (7am-1pm).
As part of your cover letter please indicate if you are interested in a part-time and/or casual role. More?
Nursery Labourer wanted in plant nursery for work at multiple sites –a plant nursery at Clyde North and a retail nursery in Richmond. Work involves potting, watering, greenhouse maintenance, spraying, weeding, installation of irrigation systems, basic construction, event installation, landscaping and driving. Applicants should be strong and fit. A good understanding of basic horticultural practices is desirable. A current drivers licence and ability to drive manual vehicles is essential. Please send your CV to
Horticulturalist wanted by Proteaflora in Monbulk to undertake crop maintenance, supervise small work teams, manage plant trials, monitor and implement plant nutrition programs, monitor plant growth, check effectiveness of the pest and disease program, general nursery production duties. Applicants require relevant horticultural experience and an understanding of plants, nursery experience, relevant diploma or degree, inquisitiveness and initiative to find new and creative solutions, supervision skills. Applications close March 17. More? Visit
Senior Veterinarian sought by the RSPCA for a fulltime role in Burwood East. Applicants should be registered veterinary surgeon in Victoria, hold a Victorian driver's license, radiation use license and micro-chipping implantation certificate;  able to conduct complex clinical consultations and non-routine surgical procedures independently, manage/mentor junior veterinarians and clinic activities and development; have previous experience in a busy practice; have strong communication skills and exceptional organisational skills; and be able to work 38 hour per week across a seven day rotating roster including weekends and public holidays as required. More? Visit
Horticulturist sought by Fleming's Nursery in the Dandenong Ranges. A horticultural qualification is desirable. For students, flexible hours to work around school are offered. Career development and progression will be available for the right person. To apply email your resume to:
Green Army Participants are sought in the Yarra Valley and High Country for 20-26 week contracts starting in March. Manpower is looking for people aged 17-24 years who are interested in protecting their local environment. The Green Army is an Australian Government initiative that helps connect young Australians with meaningful work through environmental and conservation projects. Participants will be involved in a project for up to 30 hours per week and undertake activities including. but not limited to, propagating and planting native seedlings, weed control, re-vegetation and regeneration of local parks, habitat protection and restoration, cleaning up waterways, creek bank regeneration and more. More? Click here. To apply: click here
Horticulture Apprentice in sports turf management sought by AFL SportsReady towork on-site with Yering Meadows Golf Club. The successful applicant will receive an accredited Certificate III in Sports Turf Management qualification (on successful completion). Reporting to the Superintendent, the purpose of this role will be to support the development of Yering Meadows Golf Club, as part of their Maintenance team. More? or Lauren Ferguson 0400 616 319 or
Nursery Hand sought by Merrywood Plants, a family run company producing high quality espaliered plants. An experienced person is wanted to fill a casual position at our wholesale nursery at Baxter on the Mornington Peninsula. The incumbent will work as part of a team, planting, training and pruning espaliers. Other tasks include potting, weeding, invoicing and preparation of plants for delivery. Applicants must be able to work outdoors in all weather conditions, be physically fit, work quickly and efficiency without supervision, have reliable transport. Applications close March 10. More?
Bushland Crew wanted for work with a local council in Melbourne’s south east suburbs. Duties include weed spraying and re-vegetation. Applicants require Certificate 3 and above in conservation and land management, a current chemical ticket, chainsaw certificate and MR licence (desirable but not essential). Pay is $24 per hour. More? Hayley 9554 4200
Diesel Mechanic sought by a vegetable grower and processor supplying major national retailers and export customers throughout S.E. Asia and the Middle East. A minimum eight years experience required in a similar role. An immediate start is required and the incumbent must be willing to travel. Key responsibilities include: work within a diverse team in the workshop area and on mobile sites, ensure scheduled servicing requirements are meet and documented, assist in the allocation and prioritisation of services and breakdowns, assist in ordering and stock management, on-site training and guidance to junior staff, etc. More? Schreurs and Sons 5998 5370
Board Directors sought by Game Management Authority (GMA), an independent statutory authority responsible for the regulation and sustainable management of game hunting in Victoria. Expressions of interest from appropriately qualified candidates for the non-executive Directors. Relevant skills include: legal, finance and accounting, wildlife biology or ecology, animal welfare, aboriginal culture and identity, land management, game hunting, game and wildlife management, including pest animal management. Apply at by March 17. More? Laura Demir 8622 8509
Machinery Operator/Tractor Driver sought by leading produce supplier of quality musculan mixers and gourmet herbs in Pearcedale in a permanent full time role. A minimum three years experience is required in row crop vegetable farming including spraying, bed forming, ploughing, planting and general tractor experience. Experience operating other heavy equipment including forklifts would be an advantage. A current drivers licence and own transport are essential. Farm Chemical Users Certificate, Agricultural Chemical Users Permit would be advantageous. The role involves 38 hours over five days (Monday-Friday) with overtime for weekend work in peak season. A competitive salary is offered for the right candidate. More? Howard Wootton 0481 354 296
Warehouse Manager sought for a fulltime position with the Diggers Club on the Mornington Peninsula to manage the day to day operations of our warehouse including a team of 10-30 staff seasonally to meet our customer delivery targets. Candidates will have a hands-on work history in warehousing, have a great eye for systems improvement and be a great communicator for this central role in the business. More? Elizabeth 5984 7933
Truck Driver wanted to deliver animal feed and supplies in a Monday-Friday role that involves assisting in warehousing, loading/unloading trucks. Applicants must have a heavy combination drivers licence. A forklift licence would be an advantage. Applicants must be fit, healthy and reliable. Salary negotiable. More? Dean Holzer 5976 8880
Crop Care Technician sought by Flavorite Hydroponic Tomatoes in Warragul. Duties include truss pruning, twist-training plants, layering, de-leafing and other duties such as arch supports, crop spraying, and identifying crop pests and diseases where required. Please click here to view the Position Description. Applications close: 5pm march 7. Apply at:
Farm hand/Milker sought by Yannathan Agriculture Management, operators of a 300 cow Dairy Farm between Koo Wee Rup and Lang Lang. This is a fulltime position milking and monitoring the general health of dairy cows and feeding and taking care of calves. Please email cover letter and CV to Chao
Farmhand wanted by Encore Equestrian Centre in a permanent position of 24 hours per week. Applicants require previous work experience with horses, riding/working and some maintenance, ability to maintain rural fencing and adjust, repair, and service farm machinery, operate towed machines such as mowers, manure collection, and spray paddocks, control feed stocks. A current drivers licence is essential. Send your resume to More? Terry 8560 4600
Veterinarian, with ideally two years experience, is sought for part-time or fulltime position with Longford Veterinary Centre, with view to a potential partnership. This position would suit someone confident in working sole charge at times. Some after-hours and weekend work is required. More? Practice Manager 5149 7697 or
Vegetable/Food Inspector sought by busy hydroponic farm, located at The Patch for a fulltime role. The position offers a good salary plus 9.5% super. Applicants should be fully qualified. More?
Stable Hand wanted by Alderson Racing in Cranbourne to perform daily duties in a racing stable, including box cleaning. Work from Monday to Saturday from 4:30am-10am and afternoons 2.30pm-5pm (two-three afternoons a week). Weekend work required on alternate weekends. The position is available now for immediate start. More? Melissa 0422 407 320
General Farm Hand required by Australian Fresh Leaf Herbs in Clyde in a casual position with the opportunity to become permanent. Duties include harvesting, cleaning, and planting, mostly in greenhouses but some outdoor work is required. Applicants with forklift and chemcert accreditations will be looked upon favourably. The role involves 32-40+ hours per week and applicants must be available five-six days per week (Mon-Sat). More? Brett
Assembly and packaging work wanted: Mawarra is a not-for-profit organisation based in Warragul and employs people with a disability. One of our enterprises specialises in assembly and packaging of products and is looking for additional work for our employees. More? Jeff Tellefson 0499 600 666 or
Welding work wanted: A Gippslander is starting a mobile welding business and seeking rural work welding or fabrication More?
Chemical/Process Engineer - Waste, Water, and Bioenergy: Laurent Pochat-Pochatoux is an experienced chemical/process engineer specialised in water treatment, waste recovery and bioenergy, focussing on the bioremediation of industrial effluents using algae, as well as the subsequent production of algae-based biofuels and bioproducts. More? Laurent Pochat-Pochatoux 0432 159 853 or
Students are now available for work: Federation University Australia offers direct access to Gippsland’s students for part-time, casual, full-time/graduate, vacation and volunteer opportunities. Motivated and committed staff are available from accounting, nursing, sciences, engineering, marketing, HR and PR/comms/media courses. More? Liana 5122 6245 or
Employers wanted for agricultural graduates: Employers sought for well-trained, job-ready agricultural and horticultural graduates with nationally recognised post-diploma qualifications, Australian work experience, certifications, permits and licenses. Prospective employers can trial graduates for three to six months.
Environmental planning and vegetation design: Springbank Ecosystems offers flora and fauna surveys, EMPs for sub-division applications, weed/animal management, revegetation plans for extraction companies, specialised native orchid ID and staff training.
More? Libby Lambert 5657 2387 or
Market your business more effectively: Award-winning marketer/business consultant with strong agricultural background can offer strategies to place your business in the public eye.  More? John 0457 065 425
Need staff? Try 12 or six months of cost-effective undergraduate recruits from accounting, sciences, marketing, HR and PR/comms/media. Candidates available for paid full-time or half-time placements. More? Annette or 9214 8753 or Karen or 9215 7136
Fire management planning: Consultant to prepare sustainable fire management plans for your property or small reserve. More? Helen Bull 0400 310 188 or
Seeking admin/clerical work: For any type of administrative/clerical type work (consulting, part time or job share – even if it is only a few hours per week). I have a current ABN and tertiary qualifications in business studies, taxation and financial planning. More? Greg Lewis on 0439 523 871 or

Weeding out the bad guys

Baw Baw Shire Council has been successful in sourcing State Government funding for the control of noxious weeds on Council managed roadsides this season. The funding will be used to tackle the particularly problematic ragwort and blackberry weeds. More? Council’s Natural Environment Team 5624 2411 or click here

Here’s something to wine about

Peninsula Piers and Pinots is a wine tasting event featuring more than 20 Mornington Peninsula wineries. The event on Sunday March 12 from 12-3pm on the Flinders foreshore also has live jazz music and food available for purchase. The cost is $35. More? Mornington Peninsula Vignerons Association 0409 952 948 or or visit

And another thing ...

Other than Agribusiness Gippsland’s events/surveys, all other events/surveys are user-submitted and we cannot vouch for the information provided. Please contact the organiser to confirm details. Nor can we endorse any agenda, product, process or techniques that might be based on information in GippyAgchat.

Visit Baw Baw...or watch it from your computer

Visitbawbaw have released another short video that highlights local business and tourist destinations. Watch it here

Country racing is off and … well … racing

Race meetings will be held March: 10-Cranbourne, 11- Hinnomunjie, 12-Stony Creek, 18-Woolamai, 19-Yarra Valley, 27-Stony Creek, 31-Cranbourne; April: 1-Bairnsdale, 7-Cranbourne, 10-Stony Creek, 18-Sale, 21-Cranbourne, 25-Moe, 28-Cranbourne More? 1300 139 402 or visit

Gippy Diary

Mar 3 Country Race Meet Cranbourne Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 4 Country Race Meet Bairnsdale Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 6 Small Business Bus Wonthaggi Business Victoria 13 22 15  
Mar 7 Small Business Bus Cowes Business Victoria 13 22 15  
Mar 7-8 ABARES Outlook 2017 conference Canberra 1800 900 090  
Mar 8 Small Business Mentoring Service Mornington Mornington Peninsula Economic Development Team 5950 1446  
Mar 8 Pre-season meeting for Pink Lady® exporters Melbourne Andrew Mandemaker 9329 3511  
Mar 8 Webinar – How to effectively tackle succession   ADBI 07 4615 2255  
Mar 8 Understanding Marketing Seminar Mornington Mornington Peninsula Business 5950 1446  
Mar 8-10 Economic Development Australia Victorian State Conference Warragul Baw Baw Shire Economic Development 5624 2411  
Mar 9 Vegetable Industry Strategic Investment Plan Consultation Sale  
Mar 9 Bass Coast Biolinks Community Consultation Kernot David Bateman 5678 2335  
Mar 10 Country Race Meet Cranbourne Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 10-11 Welshpool Autumn Flower Show Welshpool Fran Grylls 5684 1376  
Mar 11 Red Hill Show Red Hill Red Hill A and H Society Inc 0432 434 255  
Mar 11 Country Race Meet Hinnomunjie Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 12 Thorpdale Potato Festival Thorpdale 0402 799 557  
Mar 12 Hooked on Lakes Entrance Lakes Entrance Dr Nicola Watts 0408 351 475  
Mar 12 Country Race Meet Stony Creek Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 12 Peninsula Piers and Pinots Flinders Mornington Peninsula Vignerons Association 0409 952 948 o  
Mar 12 Toora Pear Party Toora Meryl 0428 864 520  
Mar 13 Berwick Show Open Horse Event Berwick Berwick and District Agricultural and Horticultural Society 9707 0399  
Mar 14 Building Remarkable Workplaces Workshop Warragul Leah Maslen 5624 3900  
Mar 14 Building Remarkable Workplaces Workshop Maffra Leah Maslen 5624 3900  
Mar 15 Building Remarkable Workplaces Workshop Leongatha Leah Maslen 5624 3900  
Mar 15 Effective Record Keeping Mornington Mornington Peninsula Shire 5950 1446  
Mar 15 Gippsland Irrigation Expo Sale  
Mar 15 Gippsland Irrigation Expo – water Management Masterclass Sale Shayne Hyman 0417 330 081  
Mar 15 Small Business Bus Dandenong Business Victoria 13 22 15  
Mar 16 Small Business Bus Springvale Business Victoria 13 22 15  
Mar 17 Herd17 Conference Bendigo Laura Calder 9835 7627  
Mar 17 Bass Coast Biolinks Community Consultation Wonthaggi David Bateman 5678 2335  
Mar 18 Country Race Meet Woolamai Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 18 Parklea Pakenham and District Agricultural and Horticultural Show Pakenham Show secretary 0408 117 709  
Mar 19 Small commercial farm workshop Mirboo Mardan Mirboo North Landcare Group 5668 8188  
Mar 19 Country Race Meet Yarra Valley Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 19-20 Korumburra Working Horse and Tractor Rally Nyora Jackie Fredrickson 0484 944 598  
Mar 20-24 Don Campbell Memorial Study Tour Tasmania Irene Barker 5624 3900  
Mar 21 E-commerce workshop Moorooduc City of Greater Dandenong 8571 1550  
Mar 21 Small Business Mentoring Service Wonthaggi Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Mar 22 Webinar – Growing your business using external investment (Part II)   ADBI 07 4615 2255  
Mar 23 Autumn Future Orchards Walk Gippsland Angus Crawford 9329 3511  
Mar 23 Once-a-Day Milking Information Session Orbost Louise 0428 573 909  
Mar 23 Fire Ant Forum Melbourne    
Mar 24 Native Vegetation Insectarium Farm Walk Cockatoo Karen Thomas 0427 480 170  
Mar 24 Gippsland Jobs Fair Morwell Geoff Hill 0499 004 299  
Mar 24-26 Women on Farms Gathering West Wimmera Annette Jones 0402 209 175  
Mar 25 Mornington Fire Brigade 100 Year Anniversary Mornington Mornington Fire Brigade 5975 2203  
Mar 27 Country Race Meet Stony Creek Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Mar 27-29 Australian Nut Conference Melbourne Chaseley 0409 707 806  
Mar 28 Small Business Mentoring Service Pakenham Chrissy Lloyd 5945 4387  
Mar 28 Grazing management thriving, not just surviving Orbost Emma Orgill 5154 2867  
Mar 28 Grazing management thriving, not just surviving – an evening with Nigel Kerin Maffra Carmen Lee 0407 512 490  
Mar 29 Grazing management thriving, not just surviving Bengworden Emma Orgill 5154 2867  
Mar 29 Bass Coast Biolinks Community Consultation Ventor David Bateman 5678 2335  
Mar 29 Building your Business Workshop Narre Warren Anthony Turner  
Mar 30 Farm World Women in Agriculture Luncheon Lardner Lardner Park Events 5626 1373  
Mar 30 Grazing management thriving, not just surviving Delegate Emma Orgill 5154 2867  
Mar 30 Owl Survey Information Night Tynong North  
Mar 30 R&D Tax Incentive Information Session for businesses Narre Warren 13 28 46  
Mar 30- Apr 2 Farm World Lardner Lardner Park Events 5626 1373  
Mar 31 Farm World – Commonwealth Bank breakfast Lardner Lardner Park Events 5626 1373  
Mar 31 Farm World – Official Opening Lardner Lardner Park Events 5626 1373  
Mar 31 Country Race Meet Cranbourne Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 1 Hazelnut and Truffle Growing and Marketing Seminar Gembrook Noel 0423 411 408  
Apr 1 Country Race Meet Bairnsdale Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 4 Small Business Mentoring Service Cowes Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Apr 5 Webinar – How to stand out in the marketplace – the characteristics of a unique agribusiness   ADBI 07 4615 2255  
Apr 7 Country Race Meet Cranbourne Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 9 Southern Gippsland Sustainability Festival Wonthaggi Roslyn Jenzen 5951 3317  
Apr 9 Pets in the Valley Expo Moe Kevin 5127 3082  
Apr 10 Country Race Meet Stony Creek Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 18 Country Race Meet Sale Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 19 Small Business Mentoring Service Mornington Mornington Peninsula Economic Development Team 5950 1446  
Apr 19, 26 Cups On Cups Off Leongatha Louise Sundermann 0428 573 909  
Apr 19, 26 Cups On Cups Off Warragul Louise Sundermann 0428 573 909  
Apr 21 Country Race Meet Cranbourne Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 21, 28 Cups On Cups Off Maffra Louise Sundermann 0428 573 909  
Apr 23 Tinamba Food and Wine Festival Tinamba Kellie Willis 0429 329 989  
Apr 25 Country Race Meet Moe Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 26 Your Business in a Digital World Drouin Stacey Clark 5624 2411  
Apr 27 Sustainable Business Breakfast Mordialloc Kingston Council 1300 653 356  
Apr 28 Country Race Meet Cranbourne Country Racing Victoria 1300 139 402  
Apr 30 2017 Landcare Green Carpet Gala Heyfield Kathleen Brack 1300 094 262  
Apr 30 Lifestyle farm seminar Mirboo Mardan Mirboo North Landcare Group 5668 8188  
May 2 Small Business Mentoring Service Wonthaggi Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
May 3-4 East Gippsland Vegetable Innovation Days Lindenow Shayne Hyman 0417 330 081  
May 9-11 High Country Harvest Tour   Jenny O’Sullivan 0419 153 377  
May 13-14 Intrepid Retreat West Gippsland  
May 15-17 Hort Connections 2017 Adelaide AusVeg 9882 0277  
May 21 Hazelnut and Truffle Growing and Marketing Seminar Gembrook Noel 0423 411 408  
Jun 6 Small Business Mentoring Service Cowes Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Jul 4 Small Business Mentoring Service Grantville Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Jul 16 Hazelnut and Truffle Growing and Marketing Seminar Gembrook Noel 0423 411 408  
Aug 1 Small Business Mentoring Service Wonthaggi Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Aug 6 Hazelnut and Truffle Growing and Marketing Seminar Korumburra Noel 0423 411 408  
Aug 20 Hazelnut and Truffle Growing and Marketing Seminar Gembrook Noel 0423 411 408  
Sep 5 Small Business Mentoring Service Cowes Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Sep 26-27 Science Protecting Plant Health 2017 conference (#SciPlant17) Brisbane  
Oct 1 Hazelnut and Truffle Growing and Marketing Seminar Gembrook Noel 0423 411 408  
Oct 3 Small Business Mentoring Service Wonthaggi Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
Nov 14 Small Business Mentoring Service Cowes Emilie Barkley 5951 3384  
This regular news digest comes from Agribusiness Gippsland Inc which works with farmers, local councils, state and federal government, catchment management authorities, community groups and others to support regional agribusiness and work in partnership with existing regional organisations. Visit or
Disclaimer:  The board of Agribusiness Gippsland Inc and its employees do not guarantee that the publication is without flaw of any kind or is wholly appropriate for your particular purposes and therefore disclaims all liability for any error, loss or other consequence which may arise from you relying solely on any information contained within this publication. Readers are advised to investigate each of the articles by following the links and or contacts as provided.

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