John Bennett AM awarded 2017 Australian Farming Legend of the year.
It is with great pleasure, the Bennett Families and Ashgrove Team announce founder John Bennett AM the Kondinin Group and ABC Rural 2017 Australian Farming Legend of the Year Award.
To many in the Tasmanian dairy industry, John Bennett’s name is synonymous with leadership, courage and change. Now it will also be linked to “legend”, as John accepts the Kondinin Group and ABC Rural 2017 Farming Legend of the Year Award.
This award is a testament to the skill, ingenuity, and vision will be honoured at a ceremony at Parliament House in Canberra on 16 August 2017.
With an integrated business approach John headed Ashgrove Farms which has developed into one of the strongest and most successful Dairy Farming Family businesses in Australia. Furthermore, he initiated, developed and guided ‘Ashgrove Cheese Pty Ltd to become one of Australia’s leading premium independent dairy brands and on-farm manufacturers’ (Business World 2013).
But John is humble in his achievements, and puts it all down to just getting on with things and doing what he thought was right for his family and the dairy industry. “My focus has always been the farm and how we as an industry could work together to make things better,” John said.
“Together with my brother Michael and son Paul, we began hand building the ‘factory in a paddock’ from upcycled mining equipment during the off-dairy season. We could process milk, cheese, cream and butter all on-farm. It got a lot of attention because at the time it was pretty unique, but that is where Ashgrove started and I am very proud of how far we have come.”
In addition to building a successful business and brand, the past 60 years has seen John play a significant role in shaping the modern Australian Dairy Industry.
He has a strong commitment to dairy research and helping dairy farmers and manufacturers to better compete, grow and stay market relevant.
In 1991, John was awarded the Order of Australia Member for his services to the Australian dairy industry, which has included:
- President of the Australian Dairy Farmers Federation 1976 – 1985
- Member of the Australian Dairy Corporation Board 1975 – 1986
- Deputy Chairman of the Australian Dairy Corporation 1981 – 1986
- Inaugural Chairman of the Australian Dairy Industry Conference (which brought together farmers and Dairy manufacturers for the first time) 1976 – 1985
- Inaugural Chairman of the Australian Dairy Herd Improvement Scheme 1982-1985
- Director of Asia Dairy Industries (HK) Ltd 1977 – 1987
- Director of Thai Dairy Industry Co. Ltd 1980 – 1987
- Vice President International Federation of Agriculture Producers Dairy Division 1982
Information and ongoing news about John Bennett AM and Ashgrove can be found at https://www.ashgrovecheese.com.au/about-us/john-bennett/
Ashgrove Cheese, is one of Australia’s leading independent premium dairy brands. Ashgrove produces a range of award winning cheese, milk, butter and cream using farm fresh milk. From Grass to Cow to You.
Ashgrove Farms, milk 2,500 cows alongside leading animal welfare practices that include no bobby calving, dehorning or tail docking. That today together stand proudly as a great Tasmanian (Australian) Family Farming success story.