SIDE 2014 – riding the wave

Dairying is all about peaks and troughs, and while the industry’s record pay-outs means it is riding the wave at present, industry stalwarts know that is unlikely to last.

This is why South Island Dairy Event (SIDE) Organising Committee Chair Paul Marshall believes farmers should focus on building a resilient enterprise that can weather the lows as well as the highs.

Riding the Wave is the theme of this year’s SIDE being held from June 23 to 25 in Invercargill, the aim being to help equip dairy farmers with knowledge and skills of good management practices and the personal attributes needed to maintain a sustainable long-term business.

“Peaks and troughs are the nature of our business, but we can choose how to approach these cycles.
Resilient businesses are built around resilient people, so we’re focusing our programme heavily on the people aspect – how to build and retain better teams, what makes good governance, and importantly, what farmers need to maintain their own wellbeing.”

“We’re planning to cover a lot of ground in this year’s event, so as well as the excellent range of technical workshops that are always well supported, we’ve attracted top guest speakers to delve deep into the important issues for dairy farming.”

“We’re particularly looking forward to hearing from New Zealand Olympian Rob Waddell about sustaining high performing teams and achieving ambitious goals.”

Issues will include global dairying trends, the industry growth potential, environmental issues, and a series of risk and reward workshops looking at recognising risks to the farm business. There is also a strong focus on succession planning, something the younger farmers have been asking for.

A new feature this year is technology and organisers are expecting farmers will flock to the sessions that cover how to make a mobile phone into an on-farm support tool.

Mr Marshall said SIDE is not only an opportunity for farmers to learn, but also to discuss and debate the issues. “It’s just as important that farmers network, talk and enjoy the event, as it is to listen to the experts.”

For the first time a phone app will be available for SIDE delegates to track the programme and help to view workshops, maps and speakers. To find it, go to your app store and search for ‘South Island Dairy’ on your Apple or Android phone or tablet.

SIDE has always been a popular event but the given the range of presentations on offer this year organisers are hoping to attract record numbers.
Click here to register.

Media contacts for more information:

  • Corrigan Sowman, Chairman, South Island Dairy Event, 027 625 6646
  • Paul Marshall, SIDE Event Committee Chair, 027-306-7737