Rural forum covers pressing problems

iriigation

Rural forum covers pressing problems

JUNE 2015 |

FIFTY PEOPLE gathered last month at a forum hosted by Lyons MHA Guy Barnett, to hear about the future of agriculture in the Meander Valley.

Tasmanian Minister for Primary Industries and Water, Jeremy Rockliff, spoke about irrigation infrastructure planning.

“Already about 7000 people are employed in the agricultural sector in Tasmania and this is growing, especially with $115 million due to be invested in Tranche Two irrigation infrastructure by 2018,” Mr Rockliff said.

Minister Rockliff identified the revised Bass Strait Freight Equalization Scheme as giving Tasmanian agricultural a unique opportunity to grow and prosper.

He also agreed that biosecurity was a big issue and that vital agricultural research and development would drive the state forward.

It was subsequently announced at Agfest that biosecurity would be strengthened by additional detector dog teams to cover ports and airports.

Tasmanian Farmers & Graziers Association president, Wayne Johnston, also in attendance, spoke about the importance of the ‘Tasmanian brand’, the on-going benefits of the Meander Dam and the need for the industry to be more self-reliant.

Mixed Dairy/Cropping farmer, Tony Wadley, was in attendance and was particularly interested in biosecurity issues.

He learned that apparently, only 30% of airplanes coming to Tasmania are checked and that the Government has now put extra funding towards having all planes checked.

Mike Moores