Traditionally, the Australian agricultural industry has been heavily dependent on women’s off-farm work, much of which went unrecognised, despite their significant contributions to the farm economy.
The latest research shows women make up close to 30 per cent of the workforce in the Australian agricultural industry – a positive sign the sector is evolving to embrace more female participation than ever before.
Better still, women are increasingly involved in key decision-making roles – and their stories are being told through important initiatives such as The Invisible Farmer Project – the largest ever study of Australian women on the land.
While the government has been called on to initiate structural changes to prioritise women’s involvement at all levels, at Aquna Sustainable Murray Cod, we’re proactively providing opportunities for women to join our team.
“We’re proud our dedicated team represents an almost even gender balance of talented men and women, who are committed to producing premium cod for domestic and export markets,” says Mat Ryan, Aquna managing director.
In this article, we celebrate the contribution of three women, who are playing a pivotal role in the success of the business as an innovative, global brand.
Lizzie Moore – Operations manager
Lizzie Moore joined the award-winning Aquna team in July 2018, having previously worked at Baiada Poultry. Her attention to detail and ability to solve problems in the fast-paced environment is already making a lasting impression.
The animal science graduate is enjoying working outdoors on the water in Griffith, where she is contributing to the growth of the aquaculture business, in her leadership role as part of the “easy-going” team.
Vicki Gough – Team leader
Vicki Gough started working with Aquna in October 2018, moving from the retail sector to a new career in aquaculture, where she has easily transitioned her strong organisational skills and ability to lead a team.
Responsible for feeding the fish and keeping the workplace tidy, Vicki loves the variety of the role. Currently, she is learning how to conduct health checks on the fish, under the microscope, as the capacity of her role continues to grow.
Rachael Allen – Operations manager
Rachael Allen studied animal science at university, working in the intensive livestock industry before being recruited at Aquna. Now, she is keen to build a career in aquaculture, after identifying there is room to grow at Aquna.
For Rachael, the environment provides the opportunity to learn something new every day, alongside a team she describes as “fun and easy going”. Her aim is to get more involved in operations and planning down the track.
According to Mat the almost even gender split across the Aquna business wasn’t a specific business strategy, rather it was just something that happened organically. But he’s pretty happy it did.
“Everyone in the business brings a particular skillset that seems to compliment what others have to offer. The girls have a real nurturing nature with the fish and have a fantastic eye for detail.”
“We’re pretty proud to be an agriculture business without a gender gap, Mat concluded.”