Tuesday, 3 September 2013: Twenty-five of Australian and New Zealand agriculture's best and brightest young people are gathering at Woolworths to take part in an innovative program designed to boost rural and regional career prospects.
The Woolworths Agricultural Business Scholarship Program offers participants experience of the entire supply chain, from farmer to customer, as well as giving them an insider's view into Australia's largest supermarket chain.
The $150,000 program, which includes speakers from the Royal Agricultural Society of New South Wales, the National Farmers Federation, Deloitte and Elders, is free to all course participants. This year's intake, all of whom are under 35 years of age, includes men and women drawn from every state and across agricultural professions, including agribusiness managers, bankers, farmers and agronomists.
Ziggy Kwarcinski, Woolworths General Manager Fresh Food, said: "Woolworths' Agricultural Business Scholarship Program aims to help stem the tide of young people leaving agriculture by building careers in regional and rural Australia.
"The average age of the Aussie farmer is now estimated to be more than 52 years. We have created this scholarship program to help attract and retain younger people in agriculture to future proof the industry.
"More than 150 people have graduated from the program over the last seven years. They are now well on the way to becoming the future leaders of the Australian agriculture industry. I welcome this year's class of 2013 and look forward to the contribution they will make in years to come."
Course participants will hear from experts on subjects as varied as rural accounting, sustainability, marketing and social media, as well as taking part in guided tours of Woolworths supermarkets, distribution centres and Sydney's Flemington Markets.
The students will also have the opportunity to meet and question senior Woolworths business leaders, including Woolworths Limited's CEO, Grant O'Brien.
Interviews and photo opportunities with participants are available. For further information please contact Sophie Travers at Newgate Communications on 0419 609 236.
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