For Bridget Henderson farming has always been in her blood. For the majority of her life she has been proud to call Eastern Southland home and now also works out of Gore as a retail assistant at Farmlands cooperative.
Bridget has always wanted to be able to help and advise farmers like herself to help them improve or reach there farming goals. Her current position that she has been in for the last 3 years allows her to do just that. When she is not Farmlands you will find her back on her parents dairy farm lending a hand. Over the the spring months she is known to be kept very busy assisting with raising the families calves between her days in Gore.
Prior to Farmlands she attended Lincoln University where she spent 3 years studying a B.Com.Ag majoring in Farm Management. She then spent some time relief milking and working in Australia for a harvest to see how other people operated there farming business before returning to NZ.
When the the opportunity came up to work for Farmlands Bridget saw it as a foot in the door to start her goals of being able to assist farmers in achieving theirs.
Her current position is a great way of being able to interact with people from all parts of the rural sector and to keep up with the latest trends, technologies and management systems across the sector. If you have ever met Bridget you will be well aware that she enjoys a good yarn, making her a very good people’s person.
“ I do it as I enjoy talking to people and seeing how the different farming operations work throughout the year between small and large scale farmers.”
And it’s not only farmers she is interacting with she says she is also constantly learning from industry representatives and product sale reps. Combined with her own knowledge and her dairy background she is able to share her experiences back to clients to give them a different perspective or additional ideas.
“As I have a dairy farming background I enjoy hearing and seeing how other dairy farmers are running their farms and the reasoning why they do things in a particular way.”
One of the added benefits of working as part of the Farmlands team is that they service all parts of the primary industry. Bridget finds it a great way to learn more about the sheep, beef, deer and cropping along with equines sides of the industry all in one place.
Her passion for the industry is obvious when you met Bridget she is full of life and willing to help anyway she can. That true rural community spirited local. She also finds its awesome way to keep in touch with what going on in the surrounding district apposed to just what’s happening on friends, parents and her brothers farming operations.
Before you think it’s another 8-5 job where your selling product for the sake of selling products it’s much more than that. Bridget says “ you find you develop relationships with clients where you want to see them get the best they can out of what they’re trying to achieve. You also find yourself watching their kids grow up following the footsteps of their parents and wanting to take on the industry in one way or another when they grow up”
Being from Generation Y herself Bridget also loves encouraging the younger generation to challenge themselves and that their are so many opportunities in the primary industry to be part of. She gets great pleasure pointing out they don’t just have to work on a farm to be part of it, that there are so many opportunities to be a part of.
Bridget is also involved with NZ young farmers not only at club level but also as the the agri kids and teen ag coordinator for Otago and Southland.
This is one enthusiastic agwoman who’s passion and energy is shared with everyone she meets along the way. Keep up the great work Bridget and be sure to say hi to her should you go into Farmlands Gore, she is bound to be keen for a yarn.