Sunday, 14 December 2014 00:00

Rethink sales pitch to youngsters

Written by 
Nathan Guy and Dean Bell at the launch. Nathan Guy and Dean Bell at the launch.

WAIKATO MILKING Systems chief executive Dean Bell says New Zealand must rethink how to ‘sell’ the sector to young people.

 “Agriculture today has many career options for young people, ... and dairy technology has been at the cusp of innovation and growth. But to maintain that momentum we need the brightest and best.  Investing in those young people is an investment in the future of this company, New Zealand agriculture and the economy.

“[About] 100 graduates enter New Zealand primary industries each year but we need ten times that if the sector… is to achieve its potential.”

Waikato Milking Systems is a partner in the St Paul’s College centre for excellence. It has hosted visits from senior St Paul’s faculty and current Year 13 students.

The school’s principal, Grant Lander, says much of the agribusiness curriculum development has been with agri organisations, universities and business. “Everyone is excited at what we have done so far and what we can still achieve…. we’re helping create something of national significance – innovative and ground breaking.” 

Lander says secondary schools lack a structured, national programme to encourage students to study agricultural science and business in preparation for their tertiary study.

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