Eighteen of southeast Australia’s most outstanding farmers took centre stage tonight as they were recognised for their innovation and excellence in agriculture at The Weekly Times Coles 2015 Farmer of the year awards at Crown Casino in Melbourne.
Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford presented the overall Weekly Times Coles 2015 Farmer of the Year award to Victorian croppers, Grant and Naomi Sims of Sims Pastoral in Pine Grove.
Grant and wife Naomi are sixth-generation farmers at Pine Grove, in clay country about 40km southwest of Echuca, where the family run a dedicated cereal, legume and oilseed cropping operation using a zero-till, controlled traffic system.
There were six different award categories – Sheep, Cropping, Dairy, Beef, Horticulture and the FARM magazine Outstanding Farmer – as well as the overall Farmer of the Year selected from the category winners.
- Sheep Farmer of the Year: Bennett family, Lawloit
- Cropping Farmer of the Year: Sims Pastoral, Pine Grove
- Dairy Farmer of the Year: Toby and Nick Leppin, Bena
- Horticulture Farmer of the Year: Schreurs and Sons, Clyde
- Beef Farmer of the Year: Killalea family, Holbrook NSW
- FARM magazine Outstanding Farmer of the Year: Main Ridge Dairy, Main Ridge
- The Weekly Times Coles 2015 Farmer of the Year: Grant and Naomi Sims, Sims Pastoral, Pine Grove
The category winners each received a trophy and $3,000 in prize money, while the overall Farmer of the Year received a further $10,000.
The finalists and winners were selected from the hundreds of farmers profiled in The Weekly Times, and The Weekly Times FARM magazine during 2015.
Tonight’s winners will help by being role models and their success stories will encourage our future generations.
These awards firmly align with the Andrews Labor Government’s vision for primary producers to foster innovation and profitability in the agricultural sector.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford
“On behalf of the Andrews Labor Government I would like to congratulate Grant and Naomi Sims for winning the 2015 overall Farmer of the year award.”
“We are proud to back the food and fibre industry through numerous initiatives, including research and development, trade and investment in domestic and export markets, as well as on-the-ground support for all primary producers.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020