This year’s feature exhibitor for the Australian National Field Days is the Manildra Group and MSM Milling!

CONSUMER confidence in the Central West is underpinning a vibrant first day at the Australian National Field Days (ANFD).

ANFD’s chairman Dan Toohey used his opening address to describe the buzz in the air at the field day’s Borenore site this morning.

“The sheep and cattle markets are booming and while the grain sector has been slowed by recent rain in the Central West things are looking good. The returns farmers are receiving will re-energise the sector for years to come,” Mr Toohey said.

This year’s feature exhibitor is the Manildra Group and MSM Milling.

MSM Milling’s director Bob Mac Smith said the Central West’s farmers and agribusinesses, many who would walk through the field day’s gates this week, were in the box seat to feed China’s exploding urban population.

“It’s an exciting time,” he said.

“China has seven per cent of world’s arable land but 18pc of world’s population. Even though economic growth there is slowing down to 6-7pc, the reality is in absolute terms because the Chinese economy is so huge its growth is still the equivalent of adding the economy of New Zealand to the global economy every 100 days and a new Dutch economy every year and another Australian economy every six months.

“It’s mind boggling… And that’s only China.”

The guest speaker at the official opening ceremony was the Timor-Leste Ambassador Abel Guterres.

Mr Gueterres told the assembled audience he hoped to replicate ANFD in his home country.

When he retires from his ambassadorial role he wants to take up farming.

“I want to shift the mindset about farming and inspire young people to get into food production. We need good food for our tourists which means we need to move away from a subsistence model.”

Original article written by Jessie Davies in The Land