Although Jennifer comes from a public service background, she said that jumping into the agricultural industry has been an exciting and positive experience. “I have found myself reaching out to so many different people, wanting to build networks with professionals and the community,” she says.
“Everyone’s time is extremely valuable but they are very willing to connect and provide support, or connect you to someone else who is able to. It’s a very welcoming and collaborative environment.”
Jennifer says the wide variety of people she’s worked with highlights the career diversity that is available in the agricultural industry. “In the time I’ve been consulting and running Grower Support, I’ve spoken to so many different people and professionals: people who have a PhD, podcasters, lawyers, software developers and farmers of course.”
“All of this variety means that the agricultural industry needs a whole range of people to support it. People with qualifications in environmental policy, planning, technology, law and marketing. You can have a degree in nearly anything and be able to apply it to the agricultural industry and be able to work with really great people,” Jennifer says.
Jennifer emphasises that there are many different ways people can forge a career in the agricultural industry, with innovations like hers being just one of many.
“We think about the next generation and are often told that, as parents, we have to prepare them for jobs that don’t even exist yet,” she says. “Who would have thought 20 years ago that agriculture would need artificial intelligence and robotics? It’s just amazing how you can take so many of those futuristic and innovative ideas and apply them to this industry.”
“There’s just so many exciting opportunities within the industry for people to get involved in,” Jennifer says. Whether people are monitoring 70,000 head of cattle from thousands of kilometres away, remotely checking water levels or using cameras to monitor farms, Jennifer says the agricultural industry in Australia is flourishing with opportunities.
In terms of her own innovation, Jennifer says she hopes to grow Grower Support in the future and support many different types of farmers, both in Australia and abroad. “We’re hoping to involve people in the wider agriculture industry, including prawn and bee farmers, and really broadly to all types of agriculture. It’s really exciting to look ahead to the future.”