The season has been tough on Queensland’s dairy farmers who are yet to receive a decent summer rain. With broadcasts of a similarly dry winter, there is concern the lack of rainfall could lead to inconsistent milk production.
Following an uncharacteristically dry summer, QDO State Councillor for Central Queensland Aaron Clews said local dairy farmers share the same concerns of those in the broader industry with fear of drought and apprehension over falling milk prices.
“We are getting hot under the collar with a lack of summer rain and ongoing Parmalat contract negotiations,” he said.
Mr Clews sentiments reflect that of the majority of dairy farmers who are frustrated by market failures and farm gate costs. The uncertainty of ongoing price negotiations continues to be at the forefront of their minds.
As a third-generation dairy farmer in his thirties, Aaron Clews is the youngest representative on the QDO State Council. He and his brother Michael milk more than 300 cows on their property in Rossmoya, 45 kilometres north of Rockhampton. In mid-2013 he became the QDO State Councillor for Central Queensland, representing more than 28 working dairy farmers in the central region.
“Working with QDO has made my network bigger and opened my eyes to the needs of local dairy farmers,” Mr Clews said.
Despite the recent difficulties in the region, Mr Cluse remains positive about his future in the industry.
“Along as there is a local demand for our milk and the farmgate prices remains sustainable I can see a bright future our business,”
“I encourage younger dairy farmers to get involved and make their voices heard. The first step to making positive change in your industry is putting your hand up. It is so important as younger farmers to be the change you want to see in your industry,” he said.
“It’s easy to sit back and do complain about the way things are headed, but it’s more helpful to step up and make a difference.”