It’s getting harder and harder for young farmers to get into the agricultural industry, but Dustin Kemp wants to see this change.
This is one of the issues the Lockington dairy farmer wants to address in his new role as a member of Victoria’s Young Farmers Advisory Council.
Mr Kemp said young farmers today face challenges that previous generations may not have had to worry about.
Read more: Smart farmers needed to secure dairy future
It’s for this reason he wanted to represent them on the council, which advises the state government on issues facing young farmers.
In particular smaller profit margins mean businesses must be larger scale to be viable, making it harder for young people to enter the field.
“Getting into the industry is a lot harder these days than it used to be,” Mr Kemp said.
“You’ve got to buy big farms these days to be viable and to enter in, whereas back in the day you bought a few cows and milked them.”
Mr Kemp said he sees job retention and mental health as two other issues which are critical to young farmers.
For the past year Mr Kemp has been share-farming dairy at Lockington, milking 170 cows.
Growing up on five acres at Lockington, surrounded by dairy farms, Mr Kemp had always wanted to farm.
When he left school, Mr Kemp went into dairy farming, but a drought saw him move off the land into other pursuits.
After this hiatus, he got back into farming about five years ago.
He is driven simply by a love for farming.
“I just love it I suppose. It’s just a good job,” Mr Kemp said.
“It’s also a great lifestyle.
“If you look out the window, you’d rather be out there than inside.”
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