China's appetite for liquid milk is growing and New Zealand exporters look set to benefit.
The program – which is designed to strengthen the operational and strategic skills of tomorrow's farm leaders – will cover succession planning for farm businesses, along with a range of topics including leadership, business planning and financial and economic management.
Applications are now open for the 2014 farm managers program, which will be held in Victoria in June.
Now in its ninth year, the farm managers program is open to all progressive young farmers from across Australia and New Zealand from a range of agricultural commodities.
Rabobank chief executive New Zealand Ben Russell says the farm managers program is an excellent platform for young farmers looking to step up and take on more responsibility with their operations, giving them the confidence to add value and have impact on-farm.
"There comes a time in many families when the younger generation begins to integrate into the family farming business, taking on more responsibility with management decisions," Russell says.
"The aim of the program is to support the younger managers and provide them the business knowledge and tools to succeed. With succession planning a big focus for many agricultural families, and being the International Year of the Family Farm, the Farm Managers Program is a great opportunity to focus on succession and ensure the next generation is in good stead to manage the challenges ahead with regard to running the enterprise in future."
Russell says that farm succession is not just an issue for the farming families involved but it has a direct and long-term impact on future food production. We need farmers to run our farms."
According to a recently-released Rabobank publication, 'The Future of Farming', in most productive, developed food and agriculture-producing countries, more than half of the farmers are above the age of 55.
Applications for the 2014 Rabobank Farm Managers Program are open until April 28.
Only 36 applicants will be offered places on the program which will be held at the Grange Cleveland Winery, Lancefield, Victoria from Monday 16 to Friday 20 June, 2014.
Producers interested in an application form or any further information on the Rabobank Farm Managers Program should visit www.rabobank.co.nz/bmp or contact Rabobank business programs manager