Sheep industry study tour an international highlight

Sheep Producers Australia (SPA) is again preparing for the International Sheep Ambassador Program, continuing to foster the growth of up and coming leaders in the sheep industry.

SPA hosted the 2018 study tour in August, showcasing the supply chain across Victoria and South Australia.

Sheep Industry Ambassadors Sophie Curtis (QLD) and Lexi Cesnik (NSW) represented Australia on the trip and also attend the SPA Leadersheep Forum and LambEx 2018 conference in Perth.

Lexi said the program was a valuable one with the potential to be a progressive model for industry leadership training for future sheep industry leaders.

“Regardless of production model, no shepherd exists on an island. The world is increasingly linked through trade, commerce, travel, and technology,” she said.

Highlights of the 2018 Ambassador Award for Lexi and Sophie included getting a better understanding of the domestic and international lamb and sheepmeat markets, learning how international counterparts farm and the issues they face and visiting leading sheep producers and research stations to how they operate.

Sophie said the tour provided an important opportunity to broaden her spheres of influence.

“The friendships formed with the delegates from Australia, New Zealand and the United States and the wealth of knowledge and expertise shared by our hosts along the value chain tour was invaluable,” she said.


Ambassadors flock to New Zealand

The 2019 International Sheep Ambassador Program will be held in New Zealand in March.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Chairman Andrew Morrison is a strong advocate for the Industry Ambassador Programme and also attended the 2018 Australia study tour.

“It was great to have the opportunity to meet and hear the thoughts of the future leaders in the sheep industry,” he said.

“We were impressed with the calibre of the young leaders and I left feeling positive about the future leadership in the sector. I look forward to continuing to work together to foster and grow the up and coming leadership in our respective industries”.

The 2019 program includes a week-long study tour of New Zealand, showcasing the industry supply chain across the North and South Islands.

The forum of young producers and industry leaders from Australia, New Zealand and the United States will share ideas, network and broaden their understanding of sheep farming practices and the importance of trade in agriculture in all three countries.


Who will represent Australia in 2019?

Anyone with industry experience, a passion for the sheep industry and innovative ideas for the future can represent Sheep Producers Australia in New Zealand from 25-30 March 2019.

Beyond the trip, a range of other opportunities and professional development are also included as part of the Sheep Industry Ambassador Award, SPA Industry Leadership Manager Melissa Neal said.

“We welcome applications from individuals who are passionate about our industry and want to develop their future potential as industry leaders,” she said.

Successful applicants will have the chance to represent sheep producers and their interests at a national level by contributing to industry initiatives with the SPA Board or Committees.

Their input will influence the strategy, policy development, advocacy or industry leadership to guide the industry’s future.

Sheep Producers Australia and Meat & Livestock Australia are proud to offer this opportunity to build leadership capability for the sheep industry.


What are ewe waiting for?

Download full details at

Applications Close 9am on Monday 11 February 2019.


Further opportunities through the Leadersheep Network

The Leadersheep Network provides subscribers with opportunities to connect with peers and mentors across the country, build skills and develop as a leader with the ability to contribute to solving industry challenges.

Find out more about the LEADERSHEEP NETWORK or JOIN NOW for updates on further opportunities.

2018 SPA Sheep Industry Ambassadors, Sophie Curtis (QLD) and Lexi Cesnik (NSW).

2018 SPA Sheep Industry Ambassadors, Sophie Curtis (QLD) and Lexi Cesnik (NSW).

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