Emerging Leader in Victorian Agriculture Award: Aimee Bolton

Aimee Bolton's journey in the agricultural industry began with her first visit to a meat processing facility at the Melbourne Royal Show a decade ago. Today, she stands as the proud recipient of the Emerging Leader in Victorian Agriculture Award, recognising her significant contributions to the field through her role at JBS Australia, the nation's largest meat and food processing company.

The Emerging Leader in Victorian Agriculture Award, presented by the Melbourne Royal, honours individuals who have tirelessly devoted themselves to the agricultural sector over the course of 12 months.

As the Farm Assurance and Supply Chain Manager at JBS Australia, Aimee fulfills a pivotal role that spans the entire supply chain, from forging connections at the farm gate to navigating the complexities of meat processing and marketing.

What sets Aimee apart is her commitment to transparency within the supply chain, a quality often sought after by farmers who may view meat processors as enigmatic figures within the industry.

Aimee emphasises the significance of providing farmers with insights into the broader market dynamics that influence farm gate prices.

"I think what most farmers appreciate is just a bit of transparency,” she shares.

"I pride myself on providing them with insights into the broader market dynamics influencing farm gate prices, and this is where a lot of my job satisfaction comes from.”

Aimee's journey traces back to Shepparton, Victoria, where her family runs a small herd of Black and Red Angus Cattle. Her formative years immersed her in the world of Angus cattle, and her subsequent experiences in school and university ignited her passion for the commercial aspects of the industry.

"During my school years, I completed a Certificate 3 and 4 in Agriculture through distance education. In 2016, I pursued a Bachelor of Ag Business Management at Wagga Wagga, which sparked my interest in the industry's commercial side and the customer space,” Aimee explained.

An instrumental moment in her educational path led Aimee to Texas, where she was selected to study meat science at A&M University. Following her graduation, she made her way to Queensland to embark on her career in the beef industry.

Reflecting on her enduring relationship with the Melbourne Royal Show and the life-changing opportunity it offered her a decade ago – her first visit to the JBS Abattoir – Aimee describes it as a "full circle" moment.

"I feel really happy to have had such a good journey with Melbourne Royal, and it feels special that I've had a lot of involvement with them, judging and volunteering in the carcass competition for about 10 years now,” she said.

“Melbourne Royal offers young people in particular such amazing opportunities and this award is no exception.”

Aimee's experiences and achievements stand as a testament to the boundless possibilities awaiting emerging leaders in Victorian agriculture. Her unceasing dedication to the Melbourne Royal Show and her impactful role at JBS Australia underscores the vital role of industry engagement and hands-on experiences in shaping the leaders of tomorrow.