Growcom has welcomed the release of the federal government’s response to the Productivity Commission’s inquiry into the Regulation of Australian Agriculture.
We commend Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources David Littleproud for his commitment to reducing the unnecessary red tape and often burdensome regulations for industry.
Farm businesses are subject to a vast and complex array of regulations all along the supply chain resulting in a cumulative burden of regulation on growers.
We thank the government for listening to the frustrations of industry and committing to the recommendations of the commission in areas such as the environment, water, AgVet chemicals and heavy vehicle transport.
In particular Growcom welcomes the recommendation that the Australian, State and Territory Governments should review the way they engage with landholders on environmental regulations, and make necessary changes so that landholders are assisted in understanding the environmental regulations that affect them, and the actions required under those regulations.
We see this approach as an important step toward a collaborative rather than combative approach to protecting our natural assets.
Growcom also cautiously supports lifting the moratoria on genetically modified crops and considers there should be a national conversation on how to best use these technologies and educate the public as to their benefits, particularly in relation to the reduction in the need for agricultural chemicals.
We also welcome the recommendation that a risk-based approach be adopted in relation to growers who need to move oversized agricultural machinery on public roads.
Growcom continues to work with the National Farmers’ Federation to ensure the needs of horticulture are considered at a federal level by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR).
Growcom will continue to work closely with both the federal and state governments to improve regulation and push for better outcomes for our growers.
In the Thursday, January 17 edition of Queensland Country Life, Growcom implied the Queensland Government Department of Environment and Science was funding incentive payments to help farmers implement on-farm practice changes. Growcom would like to correct this statement. Funding has been made available by the Federal Government through the Reef Trust program.