For the third year running, Holstein Young Breeders (HYB) has teamed up with Holstein Australia to provide one member with an all-expenses-paid trip to Australia in January 2019.

One lucky HYB member will have the opportunity of a lifetime where they can visit a wide range of Australian dairy farms, take part in International Dairy Week and see some of the country’s top tourist attractions and natural wonders – and applications are now open.

The exchange will focus on learning, practical on-farm experience, skills development, networking and gaining first-hand knowledge of how dairy farming compares in Australia to the UK.

In return, the winner will be an excellent ambassador for Holstein UK and keep a blog detailing their time in Australia to tell everyone back home what they’ve been up to. They will also take lots of photographs and write an article for the Holstein UK Journal on their return.

The winner will be required to arrive in Australia at the beginning of January 2019 and the exchange will last for approximately one month.

Upon arrival in Australia the winner will be met by their host family before attending Youth Camp – similar to the UK’s HYB rally.

At Youth Camp, the winner will be involved in clipping, leading and judging classes within teams, along with farm tours and workshops.

The next stop after Youth Camp will be New South Wales for farm tours and sightseeing in Sydney. Australia’s International Dairy Week is held in January, so the winner will be attending this, visiting sales and joining in with the Youth Competition.

Holstein Australia

The winner will also be able to go on more farm tours, including a visit to one of Australia’s top bull farms before embarking on plenty of sightseeing – whether that be watching a cricket game, attending the Australian Open Tennis or visiting Melbourne Zoo.

Last year’s winner, Northern Irish Holstein breeder Heather Martin, said the trip provided a fantastic learning experience.

“It was one of the best things I have ever experienced in my life,” she said.

“I met so many amazing people in Australia and have kept in contact with so many of them. I learnt so much about a completely different way of life and the challenges they face by farming in such a different climate.

“During my time in Australia, I visited farms which had been affected by volcanoes, wildfires and droughts and it makes you appreciate the relatively stable weather we have here in the UK.”

Regular readers will recall Heather wrote about her experiences in Australia in a series of articles for AgriLand.

Australian delegate

HYB is delighted this September to also be welcoming Amabel Grinter from Muckatah, Northern Victoria, who visits the UK as the winner of the 2018 UK Exchange.

Amabel will spend a month travelling the length and breadth of the UK staying and working with Holstein UK members, and will also attend the All Breeds All Britain Calf Show as a guest of Holstein Young Breeders.

The 22-year-old graduated from La Trobe University with a Bachelor of Agricultural Science degree last year, and is planning a career as a nutritionist in the dairy industry.

She is committed to the sustainability and progression of agriculture, and on the back of winning the Holstein Australia Youth UK Exchange, is dedicating the rest of this year to learning best practice on farms worldwide.

After her visit to the UK, she is self-funding a stop-off at the US to gain experience of working on dairy farms in America before returning home to Northern Victoria.

‘An invaluable opportunity’

Miriam Bagley, events and national HYB Coordinator for Holstein UK, said: “The Australian youth exchange has attracted incredible interest and we’re delighted to launch the 2019 excursion.

“Over the past two years, we have been staggered by the high quality of applications – with all entrants displaying overwhelming enthusiasm and drive to learn and develop.

This trip is a truly unique adventure and the winning candidate must show a genuine passion for the Holstein breed and towards progressing their career in agriculture, to qualify them for consideration.

She added: “We are encouraging all HYB members, over the age of 18 years, to put forward their applications now for this invaluable opportunity.”

Applications can be made online by Friday, October 26, 2018.