City Student Inspired by Ag Course – Ashlea Cross joins Genetics Australia Team

Jul 6, 2023

Ashlea Cross grew up in suburban Warrandyte and went to school in suburban Ringwood but still found a way into agriculture.

It was Ashlea’s school that inspired her interest in agriculture and particularly breeding, which continues to grow as she takes on a new role as Genetics Australia’s southern beef representative. “If I didn’t go to the school I went to, I wouldn’t be working in agriculture,” she says. Ashlea attended Tintern Grammar and got involved with its agriculture and sheep breeding program from year 7, and by year 11 and 12 she was leading the program.

Ashlea’s immediate family has no connections to agriculture although she has family members who own cropping farms in the Riverina, but that and her city base were no limitation.“I often think about what got me interested and it was definitely from school,” she said. “I was only exposed to the agriculture field from when I was a teenager.”The genetics and breeding part of the course struck a particularly strong chord, giving Ashlea, 21, a good grounding for her new job with Genetics Australia.

“I’ve always loved animals and also enjoy biology and the genetics side of things. Animal breeding really appealed to me when I was at school and in the work I’ve done since, I love the stud breeding and genetics side it.” Ashlea is approaching the final trimester of her Bachelor of Agribusiness majoring in rural science at the University of New England and has had on-farm experience with Paraway Pastoral Company near Ballarat, and worked in the grain industry and with Nutrien Ag Solutions.

She is now looking forward to learning more about the beef industry and its farmers. “This job appealed to me for the opportunity to get out and meet producers and get to see the product of their breeding and to help them to advance their breeding.”

Along with her twin sister Olivia, Ashlea will also continue to develop her own sheep stud based in the Yarra Ranges.
“We enjoyed it so much that we decided to breed the same breed as the school and develop our own Romney stud,” she said. Ashlea has also judged numerous sheep and fleece competitions.

Ashlea will be based near Lake Bolac and servicing producers in Victoria, Tasmania and Western Australia under the mentorship of John Gommers.

Adlejama Holsteins impressed with performance of LASTIN daughters.

Hogg family, Adlejama Holsteins, Biggara, Vic. Ash Hogg and his family are currently milking 180 registered Holsteins at Biggara in Victoria’s northeast. Their Adlejama Holsteins herd is ranked Number 7 for BPI in Australia following the April 2024 ABV release. The Hoggs are milking 12 daughters of Genetics Australia’s newest daughter proven sire LASTIN BPI+523. […]

Estrus Intensity link to reducing pregnancy loss

Managing estrus intensity is a vital tool in reducing pregnancy loss and the Estrotect patch can help farmers to make the right choices. Associate Professor Dr Ky Pohler from Texas A&M University told the GA 2024 conference that assisted reproductive tools increase genetic gains. “Reproductive technology has been key in changing the way agriculture works […]

Cartoons inspire career in genetics

Not many people can claim 1990s Saturday morning cartoons as the inspiration for a successful career in genetics…but Rick Schmidt can. Mr Schmidt has been appointed as Genetics Australia’s Gippsland sales representative. He comes from a diverse background in sales and industrial sciences, most recently as a Key Account Manager for a chemical engineering company […]

Rob Derksen: ‘Australian Jersey Breeders have Embraced the Best Genetics in the World’

Rob Derksen started his career in cattle breeding in 1973, at Victorian Artificial Breeders (VAB), where he first came into contact with the Jersey breed. Derksen has been employed by Genetics Australia (GA) since it was established in 1994. The Australian AI company maintains close contact with Jersey Australia and since 2023 is part of the URUS group. Jersey International spoke with the very experienced breeding man about the Jersey program at GA and the qualities of the Australian Jersey population

The future of farming is in our hands and in our genetics : April ABV report

The GA 2024 Today, Tomorrow and Beyond conference has shown us where the dairy and beef industries are heading, and we were left with no doubt about the vital role genetics will play in shaping future farming enterprises.   The conference gave us the opportunity to engage with innovators and industry leaders along with everyday […]

Genetics To Play A Key Role In The Future Of The Beef And Dairy Industries

The GA 2024 Today, Tomorrow and Beyond conference hosted by Genetics Australia in Geelong on March 18-19 featured national and international speakers and farmers discussing emerging developments in the dairy and beef sectors.   The conference highlighted genetics will play a critical role in making Australia’s beef and dairy industries more environmentally sustainable and profitable […]

Celebrating Our Successes

Australian farmers have been urged to celebrate their successes as figures emerge showing just how valuable the genetics industry is to the agricultural economy. During the GA 2024 conference, DataGene CEO Matt Shaffer outlined how breeding values had advanced from milk, fat and some protein readings in 1983 to the vast array of traits available […]

Beef On Dairy Opportunities

Australia’s interest and knowledge in beef-on-dairy – crossing beef sires over dairy cows – is rapidly expanding. Research scientist at Agriculture Victoria, Dr Jo Newton, spoke on the role of genetic improvement in creating greater integration between dairy and beef industries at the GA 2024 conference, pondering the question “will we soon be eating beef-dairy […]

Eleven breeders added to GA honour board

Eleven Australian farmers whose bulls have made a huge contribution on the national herd and across the globe have been added to the Genetics Australia Honour Board.   Six Jersey, three Holstein and two Australian Reds breeders received the honour during the GA 2024: Today, Tomorrow and Beyond conference in Geelong on March 18, joining […]

2024 Beef Autumn Update Out Now!

We are pleased to release our Beef Sire Update for Autumn 2024. We are excited to announce new sires Allendale True Blue T325, Ben Nevis Tribune T302 and Wrigley Supreme S2 are joining the team. Allendale True Blue T325 is the complete package and has recently been approved by Greenham as a recommended sire for their […]