Thanks farmers


Farmers deserve a virtual pat on the back for leading the charge in making Australia one of the most food secure nations in the world. 

The latest Insights report by the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Science (ABARES) reveals that almost 89% of the food Australians enjoy is grown in Australia. Only 11% is imported, 1.6% of that is fresh produce and the remainder, non-perishable goods. 

“Farmers in NSW have been doing a supreme job in recovering from drought and bushfires and producing as much fresh food as possible,” NSW Farmers President James Jackson said. 

“There are also lots of other people in the food supply chain that also need thanking for our food security - the fruit pickers, truck drivers, mechanics, rural suppliers, food processors and many others.”

The ABARES report states empty supermarket shelves for some basic food items was triggered by a sudden increase in consumer purchases and “not an indication of food shortages.”

“Importantly, ABARES is forecasting that grain production is likely to return to close to average levels. That is good news for the production of many essential food items such as bread and pasta,” Mr Jackson said. 

For livestock producers, ABARES says improved seasonal condition is providing an opportunity to rebuild stock numbers following a long period of drought-induced destocking. 

“While our food security is in a strong position thanks to farmers across NSW and country, there are farmers in the Southern Basin who cannot grow food crops due to zero water allocation.”

“That’s why we are calling urgent reforms to the Murray Darling Basin Plan. The right changes will put Australia in the pole position when it comes to global food security.”

"As Australians we have to value Australian Made and grown. Not only does Australian product guarantee superior quality, it also guarantees food security.”

“We strongly encourage the ACCC to ensure vigilance on matters of competition and that the gatekeepers in the food supply chain are not using their market power during this crisis to maximise profit margins.”

The ABARES Insights report is available here
 
Date: Friday, 17 April 2020
Media Contact:  Michael Burt  | 0428 228 988 | burtm@nswfarmers.org.au