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Media release. Thomas Snare. 2015 Scholarship winner

Media release. Thomas Snare. 2015 Scholarship winner

Thomas Snare, from Boat Harbour in Tasmania, has been awarded a prestigious Nuffield Scholarship supported by Dairy Australia.

He will study intensive large-scale calf rearing (dairy beef) and lean management.

Thomas is farm manager of the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture Dairy Research Facility for the University of Tasmania. They milk 360 cows on the 220-hectare property and all replacements are reared and raised on farm. Research trial work is conducted on both run-off and milking platforms.

He is also responsible for pasture and stock management on the family grazing property, which consists of up to 320-head of dairy heifer agistment and beef breeding/finishing. Finally, Thomas also runs a pasture measurement contract business, servicing three local dairies.

Thomas believes there is the opportunity to value-add to the currently expanding dairy industry by rearing Friesian bull calves.

“Dairy beef represents a far more efficient production system in comparison to conventional beef production – I’d like to find more productive options than slaughtering high genetic merit bulls at a young age.

The challenges I need to investigate include bulk milk procurement, hygiene and shelter systems and staff management,” he explains.

Thomas will also research how the concept of lean management can be applied in agriculture.

“This concept, based on the Toyota production system, is used by manufacturing to eliminate waste and drive continuous improvement.

I really think lean management has the potential to make agricultural production systems more professional and therefore a more attractive career path,” he says.

Thomas will visit New Zealand, Europe, USA, Canada and Japan to complete his studies.

Dairy Australia’s Industry People and Capability Group Manager Shane Hellwege, says the organisation is proud to partner with Nuffield Australia to offer this opportunity to a dairy farmer.

“The scholarship is a fantastic opportunity, supporting innovative research ideas and giving the chance for dairy farmers to contribute to the future of the Australian dairy industry.

The international research that Thomas undertakes will go on to broaden the understanding of dairy farmers in Australia,” says Mr Hellwege.

Nuffield Australia is an organisation which provides an opportunity to Australian farmers to travel overseas on an agricultural research scholarship. It is a 16-week program consisting of both group and individual travel. The next groups will be travelling through New Zealand, Brazil, USA, Mexico, the UK, South Africa, Kenya and Europe in March-April 2015.

Thomas is available for interviews to talk about his planned study.

thomas.snare@utas.edu.au  Mobile: 0429 940 063

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