George Chapman

Agriculture Scholar

2019

As a recent graduate, I’m excited to be entering Australia’s agriculture industry at what is a very testing time. We undoubtedly face unprecedented challenges across the agriculture sector. The climate disaster is causing many Australian producers, prolonged and devastating hardships. We, as a globally renowned and prominent agricultural nation, must quickly find and further promote innovative and sustainable solutions for climate-smart food and fibre production.  

I am directly aware of the critical function livestock plays in maintaining a healthy landscape and stable ecosystem. I believe the industry needs to increase awareness of the benefits and untapped potential of regenerative agricultural management practices. 

I graduated from the University of QLD with a Bachelor in Agribusiness. I have since gone on to work on a farm which focusses on ‘regenerative agriculture’, implementing holistic livestock management techniques as a part of the overall farming and business strategy. Whilst working on this particular farm, I quickly discovered the vital importance of responsible land management and have learnt the benefits of working with nature while farming, instead of adopting a mechanical, production-driven mindset which is common for many farmers across Australia.  

My objective is to learn from leaders in this field about science-driven, regenerative agriculture practices which can be adopted to increase soil fertility, on-farm biodiversity and importantly, achieve carbon sequestration.  

I have been following the work of several holistic graziers and carbon farming specialists from the USA. I believe that due to the large industrialized, monoculture focussed agriculture system in the US, there has been steady increase and push towards alternative production methods to produce healthier food for an increasingly environmentally and health-conscious population. Consequently, this is where I plan to go for my scholarship trip.  

I think Regenerative Agriculture, if practiced properly, on a larger scale, will re-build Australia’s top-soils, increase biodiversity and enable farmers to grow healthier, nutrient-dense food. Once consumers become more aware of the positive benefits of how their food is produced, there will be a ”pull effect” and greater demand for regenerative labelled food and fibres.  

My long-term career goal is to establish an NGO which I have termed the Rural Village Project. This will be an agricultural driven, community development project based in Kenya. The community development farm will act as a model for farmer training in sustainable and more regenerative agriculture practices as well as focusing on agribusiness development for small-scale farmers. This project will incorporate an educational platform to train youth in Agricultural entrepreneurship. After gaining the necessary skills and experiences in Australia I would like to transfer this knowledge by continuing to expand an agriculture development project, helping address food insecurity and achieve poverty reduction in Kenya. 

Meet the 2019 BBM Agricultural Scholars. 

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