Fighting for our farmers' future

Tuesday 17 April, 2012

Government invests in ag's future

The NFF has welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Joe Ludwig, of $150,000 towards the Blueprint for Australian Agriculture at the Wagga, NSW, Blueprint forum earlier this month. NFF Vice-President Duncan Fraser joined the Minister for the announcement in Wagga, where they also visited a farmer who had suffered damage to 90 percent of his property during the recent floods.

The Blueprint forums continue around the country, with the Victorian forum taking place tomorrow, Wednesday 18 April, from 1pm to 5pm at the Overlander Hotel in Shepparton. This will be followed with the South Australian forum in Adelaide on Wednesday 2 May, from 1pm to 5pm at the Adelaide Pavilion.

For more information, or to register to attend the Shepparton or Adelaide forums, please visit the Blueprint webpage or call the NFF on 02 6269 5666.

Pictured: Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Minister Ludwig, on-farm in Wagga with NFF Vice-President Duncan Fraser.

Don't mess with fuel tax

Less than a month out from the Federal Budget, the NFF has released its submission to the Government's Energy White Paper, reinforcing the importance of affordable fuel and energy to the long-term competitiveness of the agricultural sector.

In just one year, fuel costs for Australian farmers jumped 12 percent - with significant impacts on farmers and the sector's competitiveness. The NFF remains an ardent supporter of the Fuel Tax Credit scheme and we are absolutely opposed to any suggestion that the scheme may be scaled back in the upcoming Budget.

We believe that requiring farmers to pay excise on fuel would be a tax on farm production that will hurt the bottom lines of farmers and the broader economy - it's as simple as that. For more, read our release or view our Energy White Paper submission.

Report shows Basin Plan will cut jobs, income

Yesterday, as we lodged our submission to the Murray-Darling Basin Authority on the proposed Basin Plan, an independent economic report was released, finding that the Authority's modelling on the impacts of the Plan is seriously flawed.

The report, undertaken by Independent Economics on behalf of a group of Murrumbidgee Valley stakeholders, found that the proposed Plan is likely to permanently reduce employment by 2,100 jobs and income by almost $200m in the South-West Murrumbidgee area alone. The report challenges the Authority's findings of "minimal" impact on regional communities.

The NFF has called time and time again for a balanced Basin Plan - one in which the needs of our towns, our economies and our agricultural communities are given equal footing with the needs of the environment. Now, as the community consultation period ends and we lodge our submission, we urge the Authority and the Government to listen to our concerns, and to take our suggested solutions for water-savings - like a greater focus on infrastructure and increased research and development - seriously.

For more, view our release, read our Basin Plan submission, or download the Independent Economics report.

Coming up at NFF.

> 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, this week. Themed 'growing your future', the conference brings together farmers from across Victoria to debate the big issues on the farming agenda. The conference begins on Thursday, with NFF President Jock Laurie addressing the conference on Friday. 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 this Thursday and Friday. 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 on Thursday. For more, visit the NRIA website.

The NFF AGvocate
Issue 14.

In this issue

Government invests in ag's future

Don't mess with fuel tax

Report shows Basin Plan will cut jobs, income

Coming up at NFF.

Victorian Farmers Federation Conference

New Rural Industries Australia Conference

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