Letters to the editor - August 26

Letters to the editor - August 26


See who's been writing into the Stock Journal this week.


THE cancellation of a plethora of agricultural shows in recent weeks has highlighted the intangible risk this poses of losing cohorts of young people interested in agriculture that events such as royal shows often ignite inextinguishable passion in.

I am not suggesting that large events are by any means a practical or safe option to conduct in the present circumstances, but I am concerned for the school-aged children that have again spent considerable time in preparing cattle and other livestock that will now not have an opportunity to go to the show and engage with all of the inspiring aspects of heading to the big smoke with a team of steers, hogs, alpacas or birds that the school or family has prepared.

For those kids not off farms, perhaps dealing with challenging situations in their lives or who have found that one place at school that sparks their appetite for learning, I feel for you. I feel for you because I see myself in your shoes and I fear you will miss out on the life-changing experiences agricultural shows provide you that last a lifetime.

I suggest the reason many agricultural events have been able to have continued success is due to the large number of students that participate in junior judging, handling and herdsman competitions. I find it frustrating that the response by many bodies and representatives is that there isn't a plan B as it's "too hard" to substitute the experiences and value the show would have had for our young people.

We need to ask ourselves this: is the main reason students prepare animals and themselves to compete in an agricultural competition at a royal show to learn and develop themselves? If you answered anything but yes, I'd suggest you've missed the point.

The way forth is not easy, but if today's community doesn't work towards providing what we can with what we have got, I think the momentum of the next generation may be suppressed. That sweet apple at the end has helped launch so many careers of so many inspiring people who otherwise would not be doing what they are doing with the passion they do it with.

Jake Phillips,



The development of resistance to essential pesticides is a serious challenge for the farming sector ('Kick herbicide habit kerbside', Stock Journal, July 15).

Agricultural chemicals used in accordance with their label instructions and resistance management strategies will help farmers prevent and delay the development of resistant insects, weeds and diseases.

The plant science industry is committed to supporting best practice use of the industry's products. CropLife Australia produces annually-updated resistance management strategies for all fungicides, herbicides and insecticides, and has just released the strategies for 2021-22. The strategies are produced by expert scientific review committees and in consultation with relevant national and international experts.

The plant science industry invests billions of dollars every year in the research and development of new actives and products, and stewardship activities to ensure pesticides are not only economically viable and safe to use, but also environmentally sustainable.

When applying pesticides, following the label instructions and best practice guidelines ensures products are - and will remain - effective against the pests threating the quality and yields of their crops.

Matthew Cossey,

CropLife Australia chief executive officer.

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