Stepping Stones: A how-to guide for a brilliant dairy career launched in South Australia

Wednesday 20 May 2015 | From Dairy Australia

A South Australia-specific guide, to help people working in or planning for a career in dairy, will be launched today at the DairySA Innovation Day at The Barn Palais, Mount Gambier.

“There are 275 dairy farms in South Australia, employing hundreds of people producing 600 million litres of nutritious milk every year,” said Verity Ingham, Executive Director of DairySA.

“The Stepping Stones guide for South Australia explains through cases studies the steps you need to take to acquire the skills, where to get them, and how to make the most out of the amazing opportunities available in our extraordinary industry,” said Ms Ingham.

Dairy Australia’s Group Manager Industry, People and Capability, Shane Hellwege, will be on hand to explain the wide range of existing programs focused on developing the capabilities of people already in the dairy business, and he will give insights into some of the newer people programs including Stepping Up, eMe and Farm Safety.

“The important thing about planning a career in dairy is that you need to choose the right pathway for you and Stepping Stones gives advice on dairy careers and progression, and also has some great career tips from farmers themselves,” said Mr Hellwege.

“It covers farm trainees, operators, managers and share farmers so whether you want work on a dairy farm or own your own property, it can help you find the pathway to achieve your career goals,” he added.

Stepping Stones case studies showcase SA farmers such as Justin Zweck, a senior farmhand who, after completing a diesel mechanic trade, returned to work alongside his parents, progressing from farmhand to senior farmhand. Cropping 700 hectares and milking 200 cows, Justin’s next goal is to start running and expanding the dairy with an ultimate goal to take responsibility of the farm.

Kaitlyn Harding is a farm production manager who became interested in dairy whilst studying in Canada. She travelled to SA, starting her dairy career as a trainee on a 2400 hectare farm in Meningie. Now as herd manager on the same farm, Kaitlyn enjoys opportunities to improve animal health and aims to work in genetics in the future.

“The dairy industry creates careers for life,” said Mr Hellwege.

Hard copies are available from DairySA or as a download at

Stepping Stones is one of the many examples of the dairy service levy at work locally. For more information on this or other local levy investments please contact Verity Ingham, Executive Officer. or visit

Dairy Australia is the national services body for the Australian dairy industry. The company acts as the collective investment arm of the industry, investing in essential research, development, extension and industry services with the goal of making dairy farmers more profitable.

Dairy Australia Media Enquiries:

Mark Pearce, Media Manager - Dairy Australia
03 9694 3809 / 0417 540 059