NZ Dairy Spring 2021

| 3 nz dairy DAIRY PEOPLE » Jody & Aliesha Malcolm Mother and daughter team a happy com bo P ink overalls, an adoring Rottweiler, and a vow to show the industry she’s here to stay foreshadows the arrival of 22-year-old Aliesha Malcolm. Aliesha joined the industry in earnest last season, and she’s already made the regional finals in the trainee section of the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards. Aliesha’s parents, Greg and Jody, milk 220 cows on 68 hectares, two minutes out of Edgecumbe in the Bay of Plenty. Greg has worked off-farm as an area manager for Fonterra for the last two years, while Jody runs the dairy farm. They have continued to urge Aliesha to work on other farms, and to try other vocations before committing to the dairy industry. However, fate and desire have colluded and Aliesha is excited to start this season working on the family’s Kiwi X Farm alongside her mother. Aliesha left school at 16, and she has worked for Farm Source and in early childcare to honour her parent’s wishes that she try other paths. She spent last season as a farm assistant in Te Puke but wanted to move closer to home. She said getting a job on another farm in their area threw up a sur- prise, and it just happened that Jody was searching for labour at the same time. I was really struggling because of the dairy farm- ers here can be pretty old-fashioned, and they don’t seem to think women can dairy farm,” Aliesha said. “I felt that it’s because I’m 22, I’m a female, and that perhaps they think I’m just filling in time. I’ve been out of school since I was 16, so it’s not just a fill-in thing for me. I just love being outdoors around the animals, working in the fresh air. “Being out on the farm is my happy place.” Jody said it soon became clear Aliesha was determined to dairy. “I would have preferred her to have another year under someone else’s wing, but when I needed to employ someone here, I knew she wanted it to be her,” Jody said. “Aliesha has always been extremely animal orientated. In the end we decided she can come home this year, learn our way, and progress from there,” Jody said. “Another reason for our mother-daughter team is that I realised pretty quickly when Greg started with Fonterra that I couldn’t physically do everything myself on-farm. “And I find it more comfortable working with females. Alie coming home has made it a lot simpler – it will be great to have two heads instead of one, and we’re really looking forward to working together.” Dianna Malcolm Aliesha is also studying for her Primary ITO (In- dustry Training Organisation) apprenticeship (Level 3 and Level 4). She said Level 3 is expected to take 38 months and she’s completed two of the three papers involved in less than a year. “For someone who got kicked out of nearly every class she could possibly think of, to me passing and doing the paperwork quickly and easily is great,” Aliesha said. Another woman in the mix on-farm for this season is Tonya Greig, their newly appointed farm consultant. They are installing an in-shed feeding system, in an effort to lift their projected production from last season’s 84,000kg Milk Solids (MS) to 96,000kgMS (436kgMS a cow]. They will achieve the lift by adding 2kg of grain/cow/day through the dairy and they will hold their stocking rate at three cows/hectare by grazing their R1s off-farm. They also continue to claw the farm’s pastures back from the 2017 floods – which submerged a third of the farm for a week – forcing them to evacuate their stock and themselves. “This season is a fresh start,” Jody said. “Alie and I are both here because of our love of the land and of the animals. We are both very active people and we’d rather be out there doing something than sitting behind a computer. I will add that I’m pretty excited that Alie has downloaded all the farm apps to her phone. “We will both be going to local discussion groups and events so we can learn new ways, and keep up to date with farming practices,” Jody said. Best friends and colleagues Aliesha adds, “Mum and I are more like best friends, than mother and daughter. We both wear our pink overalls, and we’re very similar in everything we do.” She says this move is part of a grander plan. “I want to be contract milking by the time I’m 24, preferably on this farm if I can. And, I want to eventually own and run my own farm,” Aliesha said. “It’s been my dream since I was 16. Mum didn’t want me to start too young in case I didn’t enjoy it, but I know this is what I want to do.” Jody and Aliesha Malcolm with cow No. 44, the first to calve this season with a heifer, who will be named Meredith. Cow No. 44 is nine years old and she was one of the original cows bought with the farm. Aliesha’s rottweiler, Tia, is never far from her side. Congratulations to Jody & Aliesha Malcolm in their success. We have enjoyed working with you to achieve your farm goals. Veterinary Health Centre works with farmers throughout the Eastern Bay of Plenty to help clients enhance farm profitability. Veterinary Health Centres : Opotiki 07 315 8474  Whakatane 07 308 7479 Budge ti ng and Forecas ti ng Tax Planning Equity Partnerships Company Restructures Succession Planning Financial Accounts GOLD PARTNER FARMit Accountants are proud to partner with Jody and Aliesha Malcolm (07) 307 7245 • E uent & irrigation • Feed systems • Frost protection • Animal health • Detergent • Rubberware & Consumable • Trenching service