Meet the Finalists - Vic Silos
Vic Silos has undergone significant change in the last three years after founder, Vic Vugs passed away in 2017.
The strong reputation of the business however, meant the products continue to sell themselves, and this assisted in a quick re-boot from some initial upheaval after Vic’s death.
New owner Ashley Kent has ensured the quality product coming out of the business has not changed, nor has its reputation as a leading local manufacturer of safe, innovative feeders and silos.
And he’s enhanced how the business works by forging a three-pronged agri-industry service model between Vic Silos, who manufacture, Tinamba Engineering, who repair and fabricate and AK Dairy Service, who install, service and expand dairies across the region.
This full-service model, in which all three businesses are owned by Ashley, has created a powerful alignment via shared staff and suppliers, that in turn, results in a streamlined customer experience.
Vic Silos are collaborating with local and international businesses to build new, innovative products, and have a service model that covers not only their own products, but those from competing manufacturers.
Vic Silos is primarily an engineering business, building and servicing all sorts of feeders and silos, and their collaborative approach has earnt them a place on the finalist’s list for the 2020 Excellence in Service to the Food & Fibre Industry, sponsored by Agriculture Victoria.
They believe that supporting the local community is a key acknowledgment of the hard work of local farmers and agriculture sector. One of the many ways they do this is via their donations and provision of farm equipment like chicken feeders to Permahealth Farms in Morwell, an organisation that provides respite to people with chronic and terminal illnesses, as well as mental health issues, in a farm environment.
They care deeply about this cause as they see the impact mental health has on a diverse range of people in the workforce, so they support Permahealth Farms because they genuinely care about what they are doing, not to get their name on feeders or any accolades for their donations.
Ashley and his team also unite with the community in times of disaster, with a considerable amount of feed troughs donated to help farmers during the East Gippsland summer bushfires, and in the ensuing challenging months as properties are getting re-established.
Ever the multi taskers – whilst out on the road in affected areas, the Vic Silos Sales Manager was also helping farmers with filling out grant applications.
Vic Silos is determined to play a role in changing the stigma of the dairy industry being a “male only” zone, and they believe that right across the food & fibre sector, diversity needs to be celebrated more, with females to become more visible for their achievements and contributions, and people from a wider range of cultural backgrounds encouraged to consider working in the industry.
Passionate about being 100% Australian, all suppliers are based in Australia and they are planning to continue to grow their reach beyond Gippsland. They currently service Warrnambool and NSW and want to expand into Bendigo and Ballarat, whilst maintaining their current lines and integrating more technology into their products.
With their Sales Manager pretty much on the road full time, Vic Silos really does provide an outstanding service to the sector, with a big focus on education; teaching the buyers of their products how to get the maximum benefits from them.
Their ethos is that “without community, we don’t exist” – and their commitment to and passion for community is to be applauded.