Meeting of the National Farmers' Federation Horticulture Council
29 June 2018
During May, the NFF Members' Council endorsed the pursuit of a visa specifically tailored to agriculture – with a working title of 'ag visa'. The concept aims to address the acute labour shortage not only in the horticulture sector but across the broader agriculture industry. The ag visa initiative has been socialised with Federal MPs and stakeholders and has so far been well received. The NFF will continue to refine the approach to ensure the initiative continues to meet the requirements of industry and government.
Horticulture Code of Conduct
The Council noted the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's (ACCC) announcement this week in regards to action against Mitolo, for alleged unfair terms in contracts with potato growers. This is largely expected to be a test case for the Horticulture Code of Conduct
Alister James of CropLife provided an overview of chemical use specifically the use of neonicotinoids. The Council also had a detailed presentation and follow up discussion on the issue of biosecurity from Lee Cale from theDepartment of Agriculture and Water Resources.
Northern Territory Farmers (NT Farmers) was unanimously endorsed as a new member of the Council. The addition of the peak body representing horticulture growers in the Northern Territory provides breadth and input from growers in the north. The Council looks forward to working more closely with CEO Greg Owens (pictured below left) and NT Farmers' members.
In relation to a number of inquiries for membership of the Council, the meeting also resolved that as a guiding principle future members should appropriately mirror NFF, and could include organisations representing horticulture at the state level, as well as national horticultural commodity peak bodies to ensure sound cross-sectoral representation
Chair Fiona Simson, thanked all Council members for their constructive and collaborative input.
The NFF Horticulture Council is chaired by NFF President Fiona Simson. Council Members include Australian Blueberry Growers' Association, AUSVEG, Apple and Pear Australia Ltd, Dried Fruits Australia, NT Farmers; NSW Farmers Association, Victorian Farmers Federation, the Voice of Horticulture and Summerfruit Australia Limited.
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