Saturday, May 21, 2022



Campaign leaves farmers and regional Australians wanting: NFF

National Farmers’ Federation President Fiona Simson: "This election, the NFF was looking for ideas and funding commitments to propel the farm sector’s growth trajectory and to give the support regional Australia needs to reach its potential. Unfortunately, all parties have fallen short ... The NFF was shocked and frustrated, when at the eleventh hour this week Anthony Albanese put a red pen through the $500 million Regionalisation Fund. This announcement was not included in Labor’s official response to the NFF." The Coalition’s regionalisation plan also falls short of the $4.1 billion ask from the NFF.

Paper price through the roof

The [Tarrangower] Times has an excellent and longstanding relationship with its printer. That printer was the bearer of bad news recently, when it informed the Times that the cost of printing newspapers had increased significantly due to a dramatic rise in the cost of paper. It is expected there will be further price hikes in the pipeline. There is also a looming newsprint shortage.

WICC sets sights on net zero with biochar plan

Shaun Ossinger, Patricia Gill. A Wilson Inlet Catchment Committee project, Green waste towards net zero, will target the conversion of Denmark’s green waste into biochar ... Instead of burning the green waste at Denmark’s Waste Transfer Station or transporting it to Albany’s Hanrahan Road tip, WICC is seeking solutions that benefit farmers and the community.

Rabobank commentary and report: May 2022 WASDE ‘Outlook on 2022/23 global grain and oilseeds market prospects’

The outlook shows 2022/23 may be the first year since 2012/13 in which the world has to consume less grain than the previous year – due to high prices and low supply, says Rabobank senior commodities analyst Cheryl Kalisch Gordon.  “This is forecast to be a drop of only 0.1%, but that compares to average annual growth of 2.1% over the past decade,” she said.

NFF’s Policy Voting Guide scrutinises parties’ credentials on agriculture and the regions

In an election campaign of hits and misses for farmers and regional Australia, the National Farmers’ Federation has revealed how the major parties stack up against its election priorities, rating them in a Policy Voting Guide.

Gidgegannup Small Farm Field Day, 29 May 2022

Gates open at 9.00am.   $15 per adult, 16 and under free.   No dogs permitted. Free Parking.

The destruction of the Marradong Timber Reserve 145/25 (MTR): Frank Batini

This timber reserve is located just west of the Boddington townsite , on the eastern fringe of the jarrah forest in Western Australia ... The infertile, lateritic soils that initially spared the MTR from clearing by farmers were its ultimate downfall ... An important question to ask is “How much bauxite mining is enough?”

The effects of biochar feed supplementation on GHG emissions and cattle liveweight gain: is it worthwhile?

Nicoli Barnes, UTas. It has been suggested that biochar improves animal health and liveweight gain. It has also been suggested that biochar reduces enteric methane and, by increasing carbon content in the manure, may improve soil carbon over time. Together these effects would theoretically reduce whole farm emissions. In an MLA-funded research programme, we are testing this theory using in a farm experiment near Deloraine, Tasmania.

Landmark partnership to enhance conservation across six million hectares of private land

Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) and North Australian Pastoral Company (NAPCo) are proud to announce a landmark partnership that will include an additional six million hectares to conservation land management in Australia. The historic new relationship will see the two organisations working together to influence positive, measurable outcomes for biodiversity across NAPCo’s six-million-hectare estate.

Australian wineries and vineyards moving ahead in the transition to net zero emissions and to tackle climate change

Sustainable Winegrowing Australia has released its inaugural Impact Report detailing the wide range of sustainable practices being successfully implemented by vineyards and wineries across Australia. The report outlines the program’s first national data set and the significant steps being taken towards net zero emissions for the sector, with 100% of members measuring and reporting their scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions.

Mildura Field Days, 21-22 May 2022

The Mildura Field Days is an annual two day event which has grown from humble beginnings as a Gadget Day to become an important link between the broader community to agriculture and the associated industries.

WA Forestry Minister’s timber yield claims refuted: Forestry Australia

Forestry Australia’s WA Branch has refuted claims made by Minister for Forests Dave Kelly who suggested timber yields in WA’s forests are declining, that the state’s forests are no longer productive, and that the decision by the State Government to end native forest harvesting is based on “science”.

The McGowan logic – sustainable native forest logging not environmentally acceptable, but widespread clearing of the jarrah for bauxite is: Robert Onfray

Robert Onfray gives an in depth examination of bauxite mining in Western Australia, its impacts on the jarrah forests, ineffective anti- mining protests and questions the McGowan government's decision to end native forest logging but support bauxite mining.

Next government must prioritise active and adaptive forest management

The peak organisation representing over 1,000 forest scientists and professional land managers has called for all major parties to prioritise policies which promote active and adaptive management of Australia’s forests. Forestry Australia President, Bob Gordon said active and adaptive management would ensure Australia’s forests can continue to benefit society and the environment in multiple ways for decades to come.

Agricultural research cut

Gabrielle Duykers. Localised farm trials in the Limestone Coast and western Victoria will be significantly reduced after a research and innovation body chose to reprioritise its spending ... Historically, the Mackillop Farm Management Group (MFMG) used funds from its members to conduct variety trials in areas throughout the region where there are either no National Variety Trial sites, where nearby trial sites have different growing conditions to those on members' farms, or to conduct specific cropping trials as selected by the committee. Earlier this month the group announced it would cease funding these trials indefinitely, citing rising running and management costs.

Queensland fruit fly outbreak Renmark North

A new Queensland fruit fly outbreak has been declared in Renmark North, following the detection of flies in monitoring traps. Department of Primary Industries and Regions (PIRSA) staff will be visiting properties in the new 1.5km red outbreak area, which overlaps the existing Renmark West outbreak area and takes in the localities Renmark North and Chaffey.

New tool helps grain growers preserve beneficial insects on farm

A critical new tool will help Australian grain growers understand what pesticides to select to preserve ‘beneficial’ insects that play a critical role in pest management in the paddock.

Selecting an appropriate baseline: Frank Batini

If we wish to compare current observations with past performance, we need to establish a set of relevant data, or baseline ... Water Corporation’s advertisements claim that “Perth’s rainfall is declining due to Climate change” showing a graph of reduced stream-flows into the reservoirs as convincing proof that “Climate change is real”. Such claims deserve scrutiny.

High-end Aussie cherries sell out in Vietnam and Malaysia

A targeted campaign across Vietnam and Malaysia featuring luxury, ribbon-handled gift boxes filled with premium Australian cherries has resulted in close to 4000 boxes sold and importers and consumers wanting more.

Farmers left out of State’s pandemic repair plan: VFF

Farmers have been left out of the Victorian Government’s pandemic repair plan in today’s Victorian State Budget handed down by Treasurer Tim Pallas. Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) President Emma Germano said the Treasurer’s speech failed to mention agriculture as one of Victoria’s key export industries and the 21,000 farm businesses that play a vital role in Victoria’s economy.

The impact of China’s Covid lockdowns on Australian agriculture

RaboResearch general manager for Australia and New Zealand Stefan Vogel said, in particular, there are four specific impacts of the lockdowns in China that are set to have increasing ramifications for Australian agribusiness – disruptions to freight logistics, Chinese corn plantings, dairy demand and hog pricing.

Both sides MIA on plan for agriculture and climate change: NFF

"From Australia’s next Parliament we’re seeking support to help agriculture go further. We want to transform the treatment of agriculture and its intersection with biodiversity protection and enhancement and further develop the developing natural capital sector" : NFF President, Fiona Simson. The NFF wants a commitment from both sides of politics for a minimum $2 billion fund to reward land managers who improve the health of their landscape.

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