Farm inventions showcased in Agri-Innovators Award

Barooga farmer Barry Bennett with his winning Slip Tie in the 2017 Henty Agri-Innovators Award.

Farm inventors, backyard tinkerers and students will showcase their innovative ideas in the Agri-Innovators Award at the 2018 Henty Machinery Field Days.

The entries must meet the criteria of having a practical on-farm application, be based on an original idea of the entrant and not be in full-scale production at the time entry.

Last year’s entries ranged from a poly spinner trailer to a ute hay bale lifter from farmers in southern NSW and Victoria.

The 2017 winner was Barry Bennett for his Slip Tie designed to stop any movement by the spacer strap and secure fuel tanks or hay rolls on utes and trailers.

A livestock producer from Barooga, Mr Bennett had entered a total of 46 inventions every year at Henty since 2001.

“It was a pleasant shock to win as I thought it was just too simple but we need to get people interested in being farm safe,’’ he said.

Highly commended was the non-return irrigation valve entered by Peter Cocciardi, Narre Warren, Vic.

HMFD chief executive officer Belinda Anderson said Agri-Innovators was aimed at tertiary and university students, farmers, backyard tinkerers and innovators.

“Entries can be any agribusiness invention, ranging from a mobile phone app or computer software program to the largest tillage machinery,’’ she said.

“This year’s entrants will receive exposure to the agricultural market place and the opportunity to network with potential manufacturers.’’

Barry Bennett recalled the farmer inventors award at Henty in 2001 when there was 30 entries.

“I would encourage the younger generation to come along and bring their apps or ideas,’’ he said.

“I always bring two or three entries each time – it was a matter of keeping the competition going.

“You can learn a lot from other inventors on how to improve your products as some are top people in their field.’’

Barry and his brother Adrian run 100 sheep and 200 cows, turning off calves at 12 months of age.

“I am constantly thinking of what I can make to make jobs easier,’’ he said.

“I had planned this year to be my last for entering the awards but now I will have to come back to defend my title.’’

For entry forms, contact the HMFD office on 0269 293 305 or email


Caption: (Agri-Innovators.jpg) Barooga farmer Barry Bennett with his winning Slip Tie in the 2017 Henty Agri-Innovators Award.