Rural Women Bring Inspiration To Annual Forum

08 October 2015

Rural women gathered in Beechworth today to discuss important issues, from career advancement to health and equality, impacting women in Victoria’s regions and agricultural sector.

Addressing the Victorian Farmers Federation’s second annual Rural Women Uncovered Forum, Minister for Agriculture and Regional Development, Jaala Pulford, said the forum provided an invaluable opportunity for rural women to build networks and discuss common challenges.

Themed Exposing the Potential of Women in Agriculture, guest speakers included Georgie Somerset (Vice President of Agforce), Nicole Ladd (Victorian Regional Manager of Prime Super), Alexandra Gartmann (CEO of the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal) and Jodie Goldsworthy (Director at Beechworth Honey).

While Ms Pulford commended the contribution women make to agriculture and local communities, she emphasised that such work often goes unrecognised, suggesting a need for more encouragement, support and empowerment.

With women notably under-represented on boards and advisory committees, especially in rural areas, earlier this year the Andrews Labor Government announced a commitment that at least 50 per cent of future appointments to paid government boards will be women.

At least half of the soon-to-be-announced Young Farmers Ministerial Advisory Council, Victorian Agriculture Advisory Council and the new Wine Ministerial Advisory Council members will be women.

Ms Pulford also reminded the Forum that nominations are open for the 2016 Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) Rural Women’s Award, which provides $10,000 to each state and territory winner.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture and Regional Development, Jaala Pulford

“The Rural Women Uncovered Forum is a unique and important initiative, bringing many inspirational women from rural communities together to network, share experiences, make discoveries and inspire one another.”

“With our food and fibre industry contributing more than $11.6 billion to Victoria’s economy, it’s vital we recognise the contribution of rural women to this crucial sector.”

“As Victoria’s first female Agriculture Minister, I am extraordinarily proud to support and promote the role women play in our primary industries and rural communities.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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