Seven of New South Wales’ leading young primary producers have tonight been awarded prestigious Nuffield Farming Scholarships for 2020.
Announced at the Nuffield National Conference Awards Dinner in Brisbane, the 2020 Scholars will each receive a $30,000 bursary to travel the world conducting innovative research into their chosen study topics.
The 2020 Nuffield Scholars from New South Wales are:

  • Bernie Byrnes, Gunning
  • Billy Browning, Narromine
  • James Alexander (pictured), Boorowa
  • Jarrod Amery, Forbes
  • Luke Cantrill, Nashdale
  • Richard Quigley, Trangie
  • Tom Hooke, Wanganella

Chair of Nuffield’s New South Wales State Committee, and 2015 Scholar, Andrew Freeth congratulated the seven Scholars on their achievement, and their collective vision to create a more adaptable and innovative agricultural sector in NSW.  

“The NSW agricultural sector has a very positive story to tell, and I’m excited to see our state represented so well in the cohort of 2020 Nuffield Scholars, an outcome reflective of the NSW producers’ ability to evolve and excel,” Andrew said.  

“Given the tough seasonal conditions across the state, it’s inspiring to see study topics so focussed on resilience and sustainability. In particular, the need to responsibly manage the land and ensure best use of our precious natural resources.

“Equally important is the research focus on boosting productivity through new cropping methods, generating stronger data on land values, accessing new markets and product lines, and better understanding the common threads of success for young producers.

“With the generous support of their investors, these seven inspiring Scholars are about to start the journey of a lifetime as they travel the world researching some of the biggest issues facing Australia’s agricultural industry.”

The National Conference is Nuffield Australia’s flagship event, providing a meeting point for Australian farmers and agricultural innovators to share their latest research findings with industry and to network with the broader agribusiness supply chain.

The 2020 New South Wales Nuffield Scholars, and their investors, are:

Bernie Byrnes from Gunning, supported by Westpac Agribusiness, will investigate the current opportunities and risks associated with purchasing farmland, seeking to identify trends relating to agricultural land values and lease rates.

Billy Browning from Narromine, supported by the Australian Department of Agriculture and the Murray-Darling Basin Authority, will investigate the value adding of irrigation water and increased utilisation of low-flow water.

James Alexander from Boorowa, supported by the NSW Department of Primary Industries, will research how mixed farming businesses can solve common land management issues, such as reduced ground cover and soil health. 

Jarrod Amery from Forbes, supported by the Grains Research & Development Corporation, will research what it takes to build and maintain a successful farm business and achieve a sustainable Return on Assets Managed (ROAM).

Luke Cantrill from Nashdale, supported by Woolworths, will research drivers of success in overseas horticulture and viticulture businesses, international production systems, export opportunities and the cold chain.

Richard Quigley from Trangie, supported by the Cotton Research & Development Corporation and Cotton Australia, will investigate cropping systems and methods to retain more crop residue in zero-tillage farming systems.

Tom Hooke from Wanganella, supported by Australian Wool Innovation, will research innovative regenerative agriculture principles to apply to Australian pastoral sheep enterprises.