Fighting for our farmers' future

Tuesday 21 February, 2012

Woolworths joins Blueprint

Woolworths has this week joined with the NFF and Westpac as a major partner in the Blueprint for Australian Agriculture. The partnership will ensure that the Blueprint gains the input of a very important group in the agricultural supply chain - the customers who buy and consume Australian produce. After all, as the saying goes: if you eat, you're a partner in farming!

Just a reminder that the Blueprint is now open for business - and you're invited to join with the 200 people who have already completed the Blueprint survey online, by having your say.

Participating in the Blueprint is easy. Simply visit our Blueprint website and fill in the online survey, talk to one of the 24 NFF Member organisations, or run your own Blueprint session within your community and tell us what you want to see from the future of farming.

Or come along to a Blueprint forum in each State and Territory across Australia. Forums are taking place in Toowoomba, Perth, Darwin, Wagga Wagga, Shepparton, Adelaide and Tasmania between March and May. For more, visit the website.

Blueprint: Industry forum

Next week, the NFF will host a Blueprint industry forum in Canberra as part of our Members' Council meeting. The forum is designed to give industry bodies and organisations the opportunity to have their say on the issues, challenges and opportunities facing the sector in the long-term, and contribute to the development of the Blueprint.

The Forum is taking place on Tuesday 28 February and will involve the Presidents and CEOs of the 24 NFF members. Organisations in the agricultural supply chain, including peak agricultural bodies and agribusinesses, transporters, processors and retailers have been invited to join with NFF President, Jock Laurie and Blueprint major partners, Westpac and Woolworths, for this forum. For more information, please contact the NFF on 02 6269 5666.

Loan Monitor shows rate cuts

The NFF has today issued the February Agribusiness Loan Monitor, the first for 2012, which shows that all financial institutions in the Monitor, bar one, have reduced their agribusiness rates in the last two months.

BananaCoast Credit Union, Bendigo Bank and Suncorp have all reduced their term rates by 0.50 percent since December, while reductions from the other banks varied from 0.25 percent to 0.37 percent during this time. The Commonwealth Bank is the only bank not to have made a reduction in agribusiness term rates in this period - however it did pass on the initial Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) rate cut of 0.25 percent in November.

RBA's official cash rate remains on hold at 4.25 percent this month, after it reduced rates by 0.25 percent in both November and December. The February Agribusiness Loan Monitor shows that banks are slowly passing these rate cuts on to farmers and agribusiness customers.

For more, read our release, or to see what reductions your bank has made, view the February Monitor.

Coming up at NFF

> Blueprint forum in Toowoomba
The first Blueprint forum for 2012 will take place at the Highfields Cultural Centre in Toowoomba from 1pm on Wednesday 7 March. All with an interest in the future of the farming sector are invited to attend - to register, simply visit the Blueprint website or call the NFF on 02 6269 5666.

> NFF at ABARES Outlook 2012
NFF's General Manager of Policy, economist Charlie McElhone, will present at the ABARES Outlook 2012 Conference at the National Convention Centre in Canberra on 6-7 March, as part of a panel discussion on 'what future for Australian farmers?'. To view the conference program, or to register to attend, visit the Outlook website.

The NFF AGvocate
Issue 10.

In this issue

Woolworths joins Blueprint

Blueprint: Industry forum

Loan Monitor shows rate cuts

Coming up at NFF

Blueprint forum in Toowoomba

NFF at ABARES Outlook 2012

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