Boots on the ground: Meet NSW Farmers member Rolanda

Boots on the ground: Meet NSW Farmers member Rolanda

Rolanda Clout-Collins’s goal to secure a future in farming now stretches beyond her family’s farm near Scone. 

The young farmer is spearheading local NSW Farmers activity as the new Chair of the Scone and Rouchel Branch, and is providing valuable input into agricultural economic and trade policy at a state level. 

This is on top of being an accountant and helping out with the family farm business, which is spread across 773 hectares of land at Kars Spring and Bunnan. 

Run by her parents, Laurie Clout and James Collins, the farm produces beef from a Speckle Park cross cattle herd and lamb from a small flock of White Suffolk cross sheep. 

“I couldn’t imagine my life without farming,” Rolanda says. “I grew up on the farm, it’s what my family has always done and it’s the life I adore. 

“I just love the freedom of being out on the farm, the air is always fresh. It’s just fantastic!” 

Rolanda became involved with the local NSW Farmers branch during the peak of the drought in 2019, to engage with other farmers about protecting a future for their farm, which has been in her mother’s family since the 1920s. 

The 25-year-old relished the opportunity to have a voice on issues affecting both her family’s farm and agriculture across the state through the Association, and she is now a Young Farmer representative on the NSW Farmers Business, Economics and Trade (BEAT) Committee. 

Cattle grazing on Rolanda’s family farm near Scone

“I can combine my accounting and my agricultural background to provide input into policy discussions. I’ve got boots on the ground and experience in both those fields,” Rolanda says. 

“Farming produces the food we eat and the fibre we wear, so really we all have a stake in making sure we have a strong agricultural industry, no matter where we live.

“With the high price of fuel and fertiliser and the price of land going up, there’s a lot of barriers to entering the industry as a young farmer – but I’m thankful we’re seeing a lot of tenacious people at NSW Farmers tackling the problem head-on.”

Rolanda also supports the NSW Young Farmers Committee, which has several policy initiatives to assist with farm start-ups for young people. 

“There’s good money to be made working in agriculture. We’re keen to see more young people enter the industry and take up those great opportunities to help grow the world’s best food and fibre,” she says. 

“It’s critical that the young farmers of today are able to have their say on the sector of tomorrow.”

Rolanda Clout-Collins.

Back on the farm, the family’s cattle and sheep are currently enjoying a native pasture bounty.  “The land is mainly high country and very hilly, so we rely on native pastures to produce quality beef and lamb,” Rolanda says. “It has been a massive turnaround. There is plenty of grass everywhere and the cattle are looking gorgeous and fat. It really is hard to believe where we were three years ago.

Why am I a NSW Farmers Member?

“I thought it would be a great way to interact with other farmers in the district because we were experiencing such a hard drought. It was so easy to get bogged down at the time and think that you are alone, but joining NSW Farmers showed me that we were not alone, and that we can help and support each other. I have also found that being a member is such a great way to share knowledge between generations.” 

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