Assistance available in wake of damage from Cyclone Niran

Farmers heavily impacted by Cyclone Niran urged to apply for disaster assistance

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Cassowary Coast Banana Growers Association President Dean Sinton visted Boogan Banana farmers Angelo Russo and Frank Sciacca farms on Tuesday following Monday's strong winds associated with Cyclone Niran build up. Picture: Michael Chambers

Cassowary Coast Banana Growers Association President Dean Sinton visted Boogan Banana farmers Angelo Russo and Frank Sciacca farms on Tuesday following Monday's strong winds associated with Cyclone Niran build up. Picture: Michael Chambers

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Farmers impacted by Cyclone Niran can apply for financial assistance.

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Farmers significantly impacted by the strong winds associated with Tropical Cyclone Niran's build up on Monday are urged to apply for an Individual Disaster Stricken Property declaration for financial assistance.

State Government assessment teams have been on the ground in North Queensland since Wednesday to assess damage on farms in the wake of Cyclone Niran.

A significant number of north Queensland Banana farms were severely damaged, especially crops across the Cassowary Coast and Northern Tablelands which reported up to 100 per cent losses.

Completely Flattened: The Sciaccas banana farm in Boogan had nearly 100 per crop losses on Monday, after a tropical low that has now intensified into Cyclone Niran impacted the region. Picture: Michael Chambers

Completely Flattened: The Sciaccas banana farm in Boogan had nearly 100 per crop losses on Monday, after a tropical low that has now intensified into Cyclone Niran impacted the region. Picture: Michael Chambers

Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities Mark Furner said that under the Federal Government's guidelines for the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements, damage assessments must be carried out to understand the level of impact.

"However, individual property owners who have suffered significant loss because of the cyclone can apply immediately for an Individual Disaster Stricken Property declaration, which makes immediate assistance available to them," Mr Furner said.

"As we go through the Federal Government's required assessment process, my Department right now has IDSP declarations activated that mean producers can access up to $5000 for freight costs and low-interest loans up to $250,000.

"As always, we will stand shoulder to shoulder with our farmers as they get back on their feet."

Mr Furner said the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries had staff in the region ahead of Cyclone Niran's effect on coastal regions.

"Our officers are experienced in providing rapid assistance to our farmers and in conducting these assessments, and I have asked the Department to have this completed as soon as possible," he said.

"It is hoped assessments in the Cassowary Coast region will be completed by the end of the week, and some of the other regions in the coming days. These assessments will be ongoing."

Mr Furner praised the region's farmers, in particular those within Queensland's $600 million banana industry.

The Australian Banana Growers' Council has been contacting affected growers and assisting the Queensland Government through DAF to compile a loss assessment of damages.

Grower heavily impacted are urged to contact the ABGC or DAF.

  • Impacted farmers can use the following forms and guidelines to apply for natural disaster assistance available here.
  • You can contact the ABGC on 07 3278 4786 or via info@abgc.org.au.
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