myBMP Sustainability Implementation Officer – two months in for Mel Swift

Mel Swift has been in the role of myBMP Sustainability Implementation Officer for around two months now and getting out from behind the computer and seeing people face to face is the biggest bonus.

“It’s a very lonely road sitting behind a desk and reconnecting with people has been wonderful. I’m really enjoying the role and I have been made very welcome everywhere I go.”

Mel is the first full time myBMP Sustainability Implementation Officer in Australia. The position was made possible because of a grant from global cotton sustainability organisation Better Cotton which has a strong focus on increasing Better Cotton growers. That aligned perfectly with the effort by myBMP to increase the number of certified growers engaging in best practice farming.

Rob Crothers is the myBMP manager for Australia. “It was a great opportunity because myBMP standards exceed those required to be a Better Cotton grower. The grant allowed us to employ Mel for three year’s full-time and that’s a great bonus for Australian growers,” Mr Crothers said.

myBMP is a cornerstone programme of the Australia cotton industry’s commitment to robust, transparent and traceable sustainability. The role of myBMP (Sustainability) Implementation Officer is to “Turbo charge” the grower uptake of our Best Management Practice programme myBMP.

Mel is coordinating and accelerating myBMP training and implementing strategies across the industry while developing regionally specific myBMP targets and engagement strategies.

Mel is based in the Macquarie Valley near Trangie NSW where she is part of mixed farming enterprise with her husband and brother in-law. Mel has 15 years’ experience in WHS and environmental advisory roles and has worked across varied agricultural companies, predominantly in cattle, cotton and broadacre cropping - which makes her experienced in WHS systems, Risk Management, Environmental compliance, and Quality Assurance.

Prior to joining Cotton Australia, Mel was a principal consultant for a WHS firm providing advisory services for some of the major Australian corporates. That experience is being put to good use in the current role as Mel is able to advise on WHS issues as well.

“Sustainability Implementation Officer essentially means that I’m the person to help you get the information you need to collate and guide you to gaining your myBMP accreditation. I’m looking forward to working with all the various growers and farming entities, big and small.

“This position is about helping growers and farming entities to gain an industry certification that the has long term benefits as well as spreading the word and increasing the knowledge about on farm safety and the importance of coming home safely to your family and loved ones each day.

“Sustainability and traceability are becoming more commonly discussed as the broader public become more invested in knowing where their food and fibre comes from and how it is produced. We need to be able to paint a picture that shows Australian fibres and food to be raised and grown ethically. “

You can get in touch with Mel on 0456 072 910.