Award recognises lifetime of service

The 2022 Brownhill Cup has today been posthumously awarded to Mr John Kneipp, at AgQuip in recognition of innovation and sustainable farming practices in Australia’s north- eastern farming zone.

The Brownhill Cup recognises and celebrates people who contribute to our primary industries, developing and supporting new and innovative ways to enhance farming practices and ensure sustainable long-term productivity.

A former NSW Department of Primary Industries employee, Mr Kneipp joined what was then NSW Agriculture as a Field Assistant in 1971.

He held multiple positions across NSW during his four decades of service including Inverell, Goulburn, Coonamble, Gunnedah and Tamworth.

NSW DPI’s Director Northern Cropping Systems, Dr Guy McMullen reflected on Mr Kneipp’s contribution within the department and his longevity in primary industries.

“John was still in high school when he joined the Department,” he said.

“In fact, he completed both his Higher School Certificate and a university degree by correspondence during his first years on the job.”

“When he was District Agronomist at Coonamble and then Gunnedah John was at the forefront of the no-till farming revolution – this included weed management, increasing fallow efficiency, addressing nitrogen deficiencies and crop deficiencies with pulse crops and shaping what are no world leading farming practices,” Dr McMullen said.

“He leaves a huge legacy of knowledge and work across multiple subject areas, committees, publications and programs and this recognition is certainly well deserved.”

The Brownhill Cup was donated by the Brownhill Family of ‘Merrilong’, Spring Ridge, as a perpetual trophy to encourage landholders to apply conservation farming and efficient management practices.

The competition commenced in 1983 as the Livestock and Grain Producers’ Association Soil Conservation Farmer of the Year held between Quirindi, Currabubula/Werris Creek, Pottinger, Gunnedah and Boggabri district councils.

The competition has attracted wide community interest and is well supported by landowners and the agricultural industry. The recipient is selected by a local committee.

Mr Kneipp passed away on Boxing Day 2021.

Members of Mr Kneipp’s family were on hand to accept the Brownhill Cup on his behalf.

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