NFF leadership in WA to highlight concerns of local producers

Leaders of Australia’s peak farm body are in Western Australia this week, hearing concerns from local farmers about the impact of Federal Government policies.

President of the National Farmers’ Federation David Jochinke said policies currently being rolled out from Canberra were putting farm productivity at risk.

“Whether it’s the disastrous live sheep ban, the biosecurity levy, mandatory climate reporting or union-driven workplace laws – the government is churning out anti-farming policies at an unprecedented rate,” Mr Jochinke explained.

“What we’re hearing is that farmers in the west have had a gutful of not being listened to by government. These decisions are already having an impact on their livelihoods and on their local communities. Confidence is being sapped dry.”

Mr Jochinke said the cumulative layering of damaging policies on the sector had prompted the NFF to lead the Keep Farmers Farming campaign – aimed at raising community awareness of the policies hurting farmers.

“Our aim with Keep Farmers Farming is to encourage the Government to understand the impact of these policies and look to correct course. We want them to listen to the voices of the people who grow our food and fibre and work collaboratively with us to grow the sector.

“Sadly what we’re seeing in a range of areas, like the phase out of live sheep exports is a willingness to back the wild ideas of fringe activists rather than being led by the evidence.”

The visit by both Mr Jochinke and NFF CEO Tony Mahar coincides with a visit to WA by the Federal Agriculture Minister, Murray Watt.

“It’s good to see the Minister turning up to hear the perspective of farmers in the west. There’s no doubt they’ll be telling him the same thing we have in Canberra – and that is that people are increasingly frustrated and anxious at how government policies are going to impact on the sector and regional communities that host them.

“Their policies will diminish WA’s great farm sector, they’ll mean less jobs and less investment, and they’ll hurt WA’s iconic farming communities. It’s madness to pursue this agenda against a state that handed this government its numbers.”

The NFF’s Keep Farmers Farming campaign will continue to maintain a strong focus on the issues impacting WA farmers and the repercussions this will have for the broader WA economy.

/Public Release. View in full here.