Lawrie a voice for the next generation of woolgrowers

SA board candidate representing the new generation of woolgrowers

Photo by Vanessa Binks

Photo by Vanessa Binks


AWI board candidate Sydney Lawrie will represent the next generation of woolgrowers


At 39 years of age, Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) candidate Sydney Lawrie knows he would bring diversity to the board and represent the next generation of woolgrowers.

But despite his youth, the South Australian woolgrower has plenty of experience in the agricultural and wool industries.

He has been involved with the wool industry on a professional level for over 20 years being the owner and managing director of his family farm, Collandra North on SA's Eyre Peninsula, but most importantly, he hands-on experience.

In 2021 he was chairman of the Woolpoll panel, successfully managing corporate governance within the Woolpoll process but also representing the needs of woolgrowers across Australia.

"I employ practical, modern, and realistic skills and views when looking at projects," Mr Lawrie said.

"I face many of the same daily challenges as most farmers do so can help bring those key issues into AWI strategy.

"But my biggest strength would be to offer generational diversity.

"To be the voice for the next generation of woolgrowers is paramount for me. We have to give them a voice for the future of the industry."

"My kids are the sixth generation; I want to see this industry thriving in six, seven, and eight generations time.

"That is what we are setting our farms up for that's what we need to set our markets up for."

Last year he completed his director's course with the Institute of Australian Directors which he believes gave him a better understanding of representing woolgrowers at the board level.

To be the voice for the next generation of woolgrowers is paramount for me. We have to give them a voice for the future of the industry - Sydney Lawrie

He was also a founding member of the National Merino Challenge and knows how important it is to continue to get young people into the wool industry to drive it forward.

That youth, he said, will be the base of continual Improvement within the industry.

"I firmly believe the best years are still ahead of us as a wool industry," Mr Lawrie said.

"I want to help woolgrowers access the technology and skills to lift their businesses to the next level.

"In the last 20 years, technology and our industry has changed so much.

"I think genomics testing is going to be a very important tool for people to be understood.

"Training needs to be done in a way that everyone can understand the use and how it's going to affect their operation."


Fresh director nominee says his youth will fill a gap in the industry

And as the modern consumer becomes increasingly aware of where their products come from, it is important the industry promotes one of the most renewable products in the globe, he said.

"We have such an exciting future, such an amazing renewable product that is grown right here in our paddocks, free-range and we are really here to push how good the product really is.

"Traveling overseas and seeing the way our wool was processed over there, how much passion they had for our industry and their family operations goes back generations as well.

"It was fantastic traveling and seeing the work that AWI has been doing; I really look forward to being able to be involved with projects overseas and to be able to continue to drive our marketing and research in other countries."

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The story Lawrie a voice for the next generation of woolgrowers first appeared on Farm Online.


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