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Inspiring New Generation at Sheep Event

09 July 2014

UK - The important role of the industry in inspiring young people to enter the sheep sector will be a key focus of the NSA Sheep 2014 event.

Showcasing the NSA Next Generation Ambassador Programme and Young Shepherd Competition, the event aims to provide practical direction for ambitious and talented young flock masters and re-energise the industry by reminding visitors of the positive future for the sheep sector, with new technology and new blood eager to face the challenges ahead.

The programme of seminars includes one that offers an insight into the NSA Next Generation Ambassador Programme. It demonstrates the wide range of opportunities the sheep industry holds for young people striving for a successful career in the sector and is entitled ‘Young blood needed to sustain the future of the sheep industry’.

Next Generation Ambassador and Kent farmer Marie Prebble identifies the NSA Ambassador Programme as a great chance for those looking to progress in the sheep industry to improve their knowledge and get experience of the whole sector at the same time as learning the necessary skills needed for a successful career.

”Development of a detailed business plan, accounting skills and insight into the factors driving the profitability and sustainability of our sheep farm enterprise are key areas that are making a difference to me, and helping me progress,” said Ms Prebble.

“This programme allows you to pinpoint where your strengths lie, and where more development is needed.”

Ms Prebble has also qualified for the finals of NSA Young Shepherd of the Year Final, taking place throughout the day at NSA Sheep 2014. It promises to be an exciting event, with a £2,000 prize fund at stake. The finalists are required undertake a range of practical sheep management activities including handling, shearing and vaccinating, all of which are designed to test their shepherding capabilities. They will also be questioned on flock management and health issues.

Ms Prebble believes both NSA Next Generation and the Young Shepherd Competition provide a great platform to meet other forward thinking, pragmatic and ambitious people wanting to help support the future of the sector.

“The industry can’t afford to make the same mistakes as in the past; we need to be consistent in what we produce and work on developing the factors within our control.

“I believe that these schemes will continue to encourage passionate young people into the industry, who want to make this happen and enthuse others,” she concludes.

Phil Stocker, NSA Chief Executive, added: “The enthusiasm and calibre of the young people getting involved in our industry is exceptional, and a prime example of this is the particular talent I see within the NSA Next Generation Ambassador Group.

"They stand sheep farming in great stead for the future, and they and others are the barometer of the success and attractiveness of the industry.”

The Sheep Event takes place on Wednesday, 30 July at the Three Counties Showground, Malvern, Worcestershire.

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