Strong finish for Young Farmer at Rural Ambassador comp'
Strong finish for Young Farmer at Rural Ambassador competition
Right): Samantha Neumann, Prue Capp, Cam
New Zealand Young Farmers Vice-Chairman Cam Lewis finished runner up at the recent trans-Tasman Rural Ambassador competition in Feilding, 6-8 December.
The top honour and a $5000 travel grant were awarded to Prue Capp, an equine dentist from New South Wales, and in third place was Samantha Neumann from South Australia.
Mr Lewis, a dairy farmer from Levin, keeps the kiwi success in this competition going strong. The 2012 winner was another Young Farmer member and 2013 ANZ Young Farmer Contest Champion, Tim Van de Molen.
Mr Lewis won the Royal Agricultural Society’s Rural Young Achiever Award at the RAS Conference in Christchurch earlier this year and was the only representation from New Zealand in the Rural Ambassador competition. The other six competitors were the top Australian state finalists.
The contestants were judged on their ability to demonstrate a sound understanding of the industry, their accomplishments, and what they have offered their communities.
“The interview was the hardest part,” said Mr Lewis, “there were plenty of questions on international trade and Australasian rural economies,” he continued. The competition also required each contestant to present a speech on the topic ‘all you need is love’.
Mr Lewis spoke about the road to farm ownership: “In the past all you needed was a passion for the industry to get into ownership. Nowadays, it’s not so. People need to grow themselves and invest in their staff in order to get there,” he explained.
Mr Lewis was impressed with the passion and enthusiasm from all the competitors. “A&P Shows are a huge part of their lives and just being there was a great honour,” he said.
The Rural Ambassador competition not only rewards the achievements of young people in the primary industry but it showcases the promising future leaders in agriculture.