The Australian Food Network
Toggle User Menu Display

Young Farmers: Food System Changemakers (Webinar)

Presented by Sustain

Join us for a fascinating and important conversation with the new wave of farmers and connectors to discuss new models and opportunities for the next generation - and how we can apply these innovations today.

Young Farmers Connect (YFC)

Young Farmers Connect regard food systems as a formative vehicle to provide the cultural shift required to develop community resilience and believe that new food systems and farming require the incorporation of Economic, Social and Environmental structures which connect us to the land and each other.

Our work has been in driving support, advocacy, networks and programs for the young farmer movement, to understand the barriers to entry to the industry, the shifting culture and background of ‘new farmers’, to understand the unique requirements of these growers in terms of access to services, information and education.

Farmer Incubator

Farmer Incubator was established in 2013 as a not-for-profit organisation whose aim is to help grow future farmers from an enterprising collective of young people who are concerned about food quality, sovereignty and security, and who are yearning to work the land. Urban mushroom farmer and experienced global agricultural researcher Julia Laidlaw will discuss collaborative farming/learning models with a case study of Farmer Incubator's Pop Up Garlic Farmer Program that reduces the high costs and risk associated with entering farming which has trained 74 new and aspiring growers since 2016.

Julia will be joined by Tanya Massy, a lifelong apprentice of farming who has worked across many urban, rural and remote communities to reconnect people, food and country. Her academic background spans Development and Indigenous Studies with a Masters in Agricultural Science. Tanya will share the findings of the research Farmer Incubator has undertaken over the past 9 months. This research, funded by Sustainable Table's Ripe for Change Grants program and the William Buckland Foundation, has investigated international best practice models for enabling our next generation of small-scale agro-ecological farmers and the opportunities and pathways for applying this work in the Australian context.

Cultivate Farms

Cultivate Farms is a social enterprise which matches the best next generation aspiring farmers with retiring farmers and investors to own and operate a farm together. Founder Sam Marwood will explain how Cultivate Farms provides the first business structure of its kind which is targeted at getting young farming families to own their own farm.


Tanya Massy - Farmer Incubator

Julia Laidlaw - Farmer Incubator

Joel Orchard - Young Farmers Connect

Sam Marwood - Cultivate Farms

About The Future of Food Systems: Transition & Recovery Series.

In the face of extraordinary challenges and hardships, Australia's food systems organisations have rallied in 2020. While restrictions ease, we know we will never return to where we once were - nor do we want to. Since our establishment in January 2016, we have said that so much of how we manage our landscapes and feed our communities is unjust and unsustainable. The major challenge we face going forward is how to keep the momentum up, grab the increased interest in sustainable and resilient food systems with both hands and transition in such an unstable context. The 'Transition & Recovery' Series will bring together food systems experts to discuss how we can work collaboratively to achieve these goals.

More information:

This event has already taken place.

For more information about this past event, visit