Fighting for our farmers' future

Tuesday 3 April, 2012

Blueprint rolls out across Aust.

Tomorrow, the NFF's Blueprint for Australian Agriculture roadshow will roll into Wagga in NSW, giving those in the Riverina region the chance to have their say on the issues, challenges and opportunities facing the agricultural sector. The Wagga forum will take place from 1pm to 5pm at the Country Comfort Hotel, and all with an interest in, or involvement with, farming and the agricultural supply chain are invited to attend.

The NSW Blueprint forum follows the Darwin forum held last week (in conjunction with the NT Cattlemen's Association's northern beef forum), and the Perth forum the week prior (in conjunction with the WAFarmers' centenary conference), with pastoralists, graziers and cattlemen coming together to debate the key issues. Key trends emerging across the country as part of the Blueprint process include the profitability of our family farms and supply chain, the perception of agriculture among the wider community and the challenge of encouraging the next generation of farmers.

These issues are the same for many farmers across the country, while in some states and territories, more specific concerns also exist - like land use change in QLD with the mining and CSG boom, and market access in the NT, given the challenges of the livestock export industry. And now it's Wagga's turn to help the NFF map out where we, as an industry, want to go and how we're going to get there. For more on the Wagga Blueprint (plus the upcoming forums in VIC, SA and TAS), visit the Blueprint webpage.

President in Indonesia and NT.

A week after returning from Indonesia as part of the trade delegation with Minister for Trade and Competitiveness, Craig Emerson, and Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Joe Ludwig, NFF President Jock Laurie took part in a panel session at the NT Cattlemen's Association northern beef forum in Darwin last week. Market access into Indonesia and the future of Australia's livestock export industry were among the issues raised by the 400 top end cattlemen in attendance, along with industry representation and the perception and understanding of agricultural production.

As part of his trip, Jock visited a number of top end stations, including Bonalbo and Tipperary - the very station where former NFF President David Crombie, and recipient of an honourary NTCA life membership at the forum dinner, started his career in agriculture.

Asian Century White paper.

The NFF has made a submission to the 'Australia in the Asian Century' white paper, calling on the Government to recognise the positive opportunities for Australian agriculture given the rise of Asia, and to assist this via policies that support a strengthened relationship between the two regions.

In just eight years time, it is predicted that half of the world's population will live on Australia's northern doorstep. Four billion people across Asia, enjoying economic growth of around 10 percent per year, represent unparalleled opportunities for Australia's economy, and particularly our dynamic farm sector. And, by 2050, 5 billion people will live in Asia, which means more mouths to feed and more people to clothe.

Expanding Asian societies need food and fibre like never before and, due to their growing affluence, are demanding produce of the highest quality: a domain where Australian farmers, due to our clean and natural production systems, have a clear competitive advantage. Population growth, improved incomes and increasing urbanisation are all driving the rise of the Asian century - and creating opportunities for Australian farmers.

For more, read our submission to the White Paper.

Coming up at NFF.

> Sustainable Food Summit
The 2nd National Sustainable Food Summit, supported by the NFF, has today kicked off in Sydney, NSW. The Summit is focusing on how Australia's food system will need to transform to meet the challenge of feeding more people with less over the next century. For more information, visit the Summit website.

> Natural Resource Management Knowledge Conference
The 4th National Natural Resource Management (NRM) Knowledge Conference, hosted by the National NRM Regions Working Group in partnership with NFF, WWF, ACF and ALGA, is taking place at the Morphettville Racecourse in Adelaide, SA, from 16-18 April. The conference is an opportunity for all interested in natural resource management to find out what is happening in Australia's backyard. For more information, visit the Conference website.

> Victorian Farmers Federation Conference
The Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) Annual General Meeting and Conference will be held at the All Seasons Resort in Bendigo, VIC, on Thursday 19 and Friday 20 April. Themed 'growing your future', the conference brings together farmers from across Victoria to debate the big issues on the farming agenda. For more, visit the VFF website.

> New Rural Industries Australia Conference
The New Rural Industries Australia (NRIA) 2012 Conference will be held at the Mercure Hotel and Convention Centre in Ballarat, VIC on Thursday 19 and Friday 20 April. Representing new and emerging agricultural industries, the NRIA conference is themed 'rural enterprise, innovation and change.' NFF CEO Matt Linnegar will be presenting at the conference regarding the Blueprint for Australian Agriculture. For more, visit the NRIA website.

The NFF AGvocate
Issue 13.

In this issue

Blueprint rolls out across Aust.

President in Indonesia and NT.

Asian Century White paper.

Coming up at NFF.

Sustainable Food Summit

Natural Resource Management Knowledge Conference

Victorian Farmers Federation Conference

New Rural Industries Australia Conference

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