About Me

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If you wish to know more about me please click on the following link www.eldredgeandassociates.com.au If reading this blog for the first time please make sure you go to the first blogs (scroll to the bottom of the page and click on older posts) as it will explain the journey

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Hello again

Wow what a huge couple of days, we have been meeting the new global scholars, meeting leaders (and powerful CEO's) of European industry and....maybe....a bit of a drink or 2....

After suffering a slight touch of jet lag, we had a free morning to recover and then had a presentation to do about ourselves, life, career and project...all in 2 minutes...are you serious.... me, trying to do all that in 2 minutes!!!  It was a great insight into the other scholars and their lives and what their passions/research areas are, I hope to collect some details about a couple of really interesting research projects and take photos of the scholars and pop on my blog...so working on that one...I think you will enjoy some of the innovative ideas that are emerging from this group.

What I have learnt over the past couple of days is that Cooperatives as a business model are strong and thriving here in the Netherlands, we spent a day at "FloraHolland" , the worlds largest flower cooperative, turnover $4.2 Billion annually, 5000 coop members, 3000 buyers, 5000 staff...and an amazing system of automation, an auction clock that starts at the highest price for the seller and buyers bid down from the highest price...how good is that!!  I think the Cooperatives work so well in the Netherlands as there is so much competition for the product ie many buyers competing against each other, unfortunately in Australia with only limited buyers I cant see how a cooperative would function,  in effect the buyers throughs acqusitions and mergers can reduce the active buyers/competition and effectively could opt "out" of the buying cycle, with possibly a stand off occuring between the cooperative and buyers.  Still a great model to keep exploring though....maybe some modifications can result in a new super business model for Australian agribusiness...........
Its cold!! From 39degrees at home to
zero, a brisk walk in the countryside

Today we had a great session about European Union policy and the Common Agricultural policy (CAP), this is the driver of "subsidies" that have emerged in many forms over the years...we hear a lot about the desire for the "subsidies" to be removed...it is a complicated system of social welfare, protectionism policies and global responsibility...probably at this stage I am feeling that the "subsidies" need to remain in place as removal would see world markets in turmoil, it will be an interesting debate within Europe during 2012 as to where then CAP will be positioned for the next 7 years as negotiations are taking place this year, and as a continent in financial crisis these "subsidies" are being supported but challenged by the common people too!!
After WW2 Europe decided they would never starve again...and this has been the driver of the CAP and protectionism of Agriculture in Europe.

The drink or 2....well thats another story...we have a global sisterhood occuring and what better way to consolidate it but a lovely dinner and some drinks on our Spido cruise of the Rotterdam harbour (the worlds 3rd biggest harbour)...and so the night went on and on and on.......the best thing is that in our "sisterhood" drinks many of the ladies agreed to come to Australia to catch up with South Aussie girls... in many cases their research is based around rural women...so you will all get to meet these amazing ladies in the next 24 months....just hope they remember commiting to coming!!!  Will follow that up with them in the cold light of day...

We visited a dairy where 150 cows live in this barn 12 month of the year and dont ever go outside to graze, whilst this may be the centre of debate between the public etc, I must say the cows looked really healthy and content.....
 Tomorrow another big day before we fly to London at 8.30pm...will post again when I can get onto wiifi...talk soon x

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Have arrived in Amsterdam..... from the time I left home to this point, about 45 hours with very little sleep so looking forward to dinner, wine, of course a chat!! then sleep, this is a little sample of some of the Netherlands I experienced today, along with Herring and pickles....which I loved....less loved when I realised it was very raw....Dinner and wine awaits, tomorrow off to visit rural Netherlands
PS......very cold this afternoon I spied a thermometer at a place we were at and it was minus 3 at 4pm in the afternoon,,,,brrrrrrrrrrrrr.....

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Woo Hoo here we go.....on my way at 5am tomorrow morning!!

Down to the airport, meet up with the 3 other scholars who are travelling with me, off to KL, a 9 hour stop at KL then Amsterdam...here we come!!  We will be meeting up with the other Nuffield scholars from all around the world (bout 30 I think) and having a roving conference around the Netherlands, then to London for Leadership and network training after which I will head out into the UK countryside to visit some contacts for my research                                                                                                                                                                                        

Here are some pictures of the lovely ones I am leaving behind, above is Jerome Michael Egrebeth the pet sheep, my son Bryce at his enlistment ceremony for his gap year in the airforce with his lovely girlfriend, gorgeous Jess my daughter with super Snickers, and Rhys recently celebrating his 50th, check out our Fluffy below, how pissed does she look...not happy cat!!
I will post again once in cold Netherlands from 35 degrees today to about 2 degrees tomorrow!!

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Hello again...
(If this is your first visit to my blog please scroll to bottom of the page for my initial entry/info etc)

For those who dont know my background, where I live etc please have look at my website


and it will explain more about me and my life/loves and agri career...

I had a wonderful time in Sydney and Canberra with my wonderful sponsors Grain Growers Ltd and spent 2 days looking at their business, ie what they offer growers, the research they have been and will continue to undertake with grain quality etc...AND got a first hand look at the amazing tool they have been developing called ProductionWise...check out the web site, I am about to have a go at the tool, the information and time I spent with the very,very clever developers blew me away!!

Left -I am in the Grain Growers research lab in Sydney in this photo

As I travel around the world I will post photographs of me in certain places and I thought for fun I will sometimes hold up a "Hello" card with someones name on it that I will choose randomly from the list I sent the initial email to and those who blog/message me.  So.....keep an eye out  for your name and tell me if you got my message...lets have a bit of fun on the way....

Now....lets not forget what a great country we live in...as I travel around SA and Aust with the scholarship and work I am going to post some photos of the countryside, here is a photograph from the Mid North of SA

Soon I will be start packing for the Netherlands and London, but before then much work to be done...till next blog...have fun, work hard and have a long/tall glass of Clare Valley red!!

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Hi All

2012.... and my exciting year of being a Nuffield Scholar is finally happening and I do still keep pinching myself that I have been so lucky to have been given this opportunity.

Huge thanks to Nuffield and my fabulous sponsors...Grain Growers Ltd for their support in my learning adventure....

My research project is centred around bringing production and management closer together using real time management tools for diagnostics in the "paddock" using business portals such as ipads and other tablets etc that are emerging on the market as a cost effective price.....it is such an exciting field and I have already found some amazing tools that are about to be launched or have recently been launched.

As a guide I have the following trips planned for 2012 (and I am sure other trips will emerge over time)

Grain Growers Ltd - I visited my sponsors at the end of Jan and next blog I will share what I learnt
Feb 24th - March 12th....Netherlands and London/Yorkshire
June 23rd to July 16th....Beijing, Europe and Canada
Sept/Oct (global focus tour)......India, Bahrain (Syria??) Turkey, Ukraine, France and USA

I will be doing at least one more individual research trip after our Sept/Oct global focus tour with my 6 other fellow scholars from Aust and NZ, but those dates are yet to be confirmed...

So...this is the start of a truly amazing life experience and I hope you will share this journey with me, so please follow my blog...or maybe meet me "on the global road" somewhere...either way I hope to bring home some amazing stories and management tools to share with you