17.6 C
Byron Shire
April 17, 2024

North Coast farmers come together for newest branch of NSW Farmers

Latest News

School holidays at the market

Victoria Cosford School holidays shouldn’t only be holidays for children. Parents too are entitled to a break in routine, the...

Other News

Peace

Elimination by people-power voting is necessary to remove dictators from Russia, Israel, China, Iran, wannabe (again!) North Korea, to...

A festival in laneways

Mullumbimby, a town known for its abundance of artists and creatives with a passion for what drives them, is set to host the much-anticipated Laneways Festival 2024 on May 4 and 5.

Byron U/18 girls basketballers undefeated in regional competition

The Byron Bay Beez girls U/18 squad are undefeated and sit on top of the North Eastern Junior League (NEJL) after two of four rounds.

Success for Queensland’s first drug testing at Rabbits Eat Lettuce festival

The sun was peeking through the clouds as festival-goers arrived at the Rabbits Eat Lettuce festival in Queensland over the Easter weekend.

Bangalow retaining wall damage

The wall supporting the western end of Deacon Street has failed – opposite the Roman Catholic Church. Fortunately, this...

Man charged over alleged home invasion – Kingscliff

A man faced court yesterday charged over an alleged home invasion in Kingscliff that left one man dead and another seriously injured.

Burringbar farmer and Chair of the recently formed NSW Farmers Far North Coast Branch, Craig Huf with his dog Skip. Photo supplied

NSW Farmers have a new branch for their organisation and it is based here on the North Coast ‘heralding a new era for agriculture in Byron Shire and the Tweed Valley’.

More than 30 local cattle, sugarcane and horticultural producers recently attended the branch’s first meeting in Murwillumbah.

‘We are really looking forward to getting this group together,’ Burringbar farmer and Chair of the NSW Farmers Far North Coast Branch, Craig Huf, told The Echo.

‘Having a local branch of the state’s peak agricultural advocacy body would improve engagement with policy makers from all levels of government, and deal with rural land issues stemming from poor policy developed without adequate input from landholders.

‘NSW Farmers has a great track record of farmer advocacy, and it’s very comforting to be part of an organisation that is covering you while you are head down in the paddock at work each day,’ Mr Huf said.

‘While everyone relies on farmers for their food, all too often we see decisions made that make it harder to produce that food and that erode the sustainability and resilience of agriculture and food production in the region. People need to be aware that more and more imposts on Australian farmers makes them less competitive, and that ultimately means more imported overseas product on supermarket shelves. We’re keen to tackle those issues. We want to really improve genuine consultation and communication and stop the continued erosion of our ability to be productive farmers.’

Mr Huf said the work done by NSW Farmers to secure more support for flood-affected farmers and communities last year, and the work to protect landholders from being sued by trespassers who injured themselves, was proof that membership was worthwhile.

Land conflict issues 

‘That catchcry of “Stronger Together” couldn’t be more true – we’ve seen how important it is to stick together over the past year or two,’ Mr Huf said.

‘The far north coast increasingly has land planning challenges for rural landowners, with the massive bushfire mitigation, safety and weed control headaches arising from the rezoning of rural land into “E Zones”.

‘Our farming area is unique since we have a high density of lifestyle owners which is great for our rural villages, schools and communities. Farming alongside lifestyle residents sometimes presents unique challenges and we need to improve communication and upfront information so rural residents can better understand the seasonal timing and weather demands of running a farm.’

Farming? Get involved

The new branch identified seven key areas of focus for the next 12 months, and Mr Huf said he would love to see more people get involved to deliver what the region needs.

‘I think rural landowners and farmers should have a louder voice in the management of weeds like camphor laurel, which poses a risk not just to farmers but towns as it’s flammable.

‘We are actually advocating for policy to support commercialising the harvesting of camphor laurel. If we allow it to be removed more easily by commercial operators, we’ll create economic activity, reduce the burden of management on farmers, and reduce the risk to residents – that’s what I call a win-win-win!’

For more information on the NSW Farmers Far North Coast Branch email: [email protected] or register at NSW Farmers.

The first branch meeting for members will be held in the week following 7 February.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

New chef at Crystalbrook Byron

Joachim Borenius has been appointed as the new executive chef at Crystalbrook Byron resort’s signature restaurant, Forest. Joachim Borenius brings a wealth of experience, gathered...

Jungle Juice – squeezing the most out of life!

Four years ago, Guido and Natalia Annoni decided to swap the rat race for the jungle – heading north from Sydney with their kids...

Local grom takes national tube-riding prize

Local grom takes national tube-riding prize. Broken Head surfer Leihani Zoric has taken out first place in the U/14 girls and best barrel (girl) categories of the Australian Junior Online Surf Championships.