Farm Tender

Just a Farmer - No way

Extracted from the Farm Tender weekly Newsletter - Sign up and get the email every Wednesday morning before 6 am.

By Dwain Duxson

I was lying in bed trying to work out what to write about this morning when I thought, where's all this licence to Farm stuff? And where are all the protesters that were raiding Farms and scaring the bejesus out of everyone from Animals to Humans?

That stuff was all pre-pandemic, so maybe these people stopped and said, hold on a minute, these guys are important.

Now whether we return to a similar situation or not, only time will tell. But maybe, just maybe, many have worked out that the food they eat, these guys provide. And the clothes they wear, these guys also provide.

From a Farming perspective, the pandemic hasn't had as big an impact as it has had for the majority of the community. As an industry, we haven't missed a beat really. Maybe it's messed up a few supply chains, etc, but....

I know it's not a great thing to say, but Ag hasn't wasted its crisis.

So the profile of the Farmer has lifted. No longer do we consider ourselves "just" Farmers.

When I was a young bloke, post-school and working on the family Farm, if I was in a social situation outside my local area (more so when I went to the city), I would blatantly lie by saying I was an accountant (good god). I remember being embarrassed for many years that I was a Farmer, and to lift my so-called profile, I had to tell them I was something else I wasn't. What a dick.

But why? I know why. I was with my mates from the city (formerly country), I was in their domain and talking to their people and I wanted to feel a part of it all. That's a pretty sad situation, but you do stupid things when you are young.

Getting back to the "just" a Farmer thing, we have self tagged ourselves as that in the past. What do you do? Oh, I'm just a Farmer....

However, I think things have changed a lot. Many Farmers now have pride in what they do, and the outside world now sees it as important work. I wrote about meaningful work a couple of weeks ago.

I am a heavy reader of news (only positive), and I love how the Australian newspaper always has an Ag story and photo on the front page every Saturday. I am seeing more and more good Ag stories in the mainstream press. Why? Because those outside Ag want to read those articles.

Maybe it's helped the readership of some of our Rural papers. Old mate Lawyer, with a small lifestyle Farm, buys (or subscribes these days) the Weekly Times to show his mates that he's a Farmer more so than a Lawyer.

I was talking to my new neighbours across the road. They live in the city and are building a house on their new block of 100 acres and are excited to be moving to the country and tackling this Farming game. They want to be a part of our industry in some way, shape or form.

It's a long way from those early twenties when I was trying to cut it socially (hands over face, shaking).

Just a Farmer - No way

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