The announcement of a further $19 million to improve the health and resilience of the Great Barrier Reef has been warmly welcomed by the Australian cane growing sector, an industry well-known for its enormous focus on speeding adoption of the latest practices and technology for productivity and sustainability.
A very vocal and long term supporter of proactive partnerships such as these, peak group CANEGROWERS was an active member into a joint bid for funding to be delivered under Phase Three of the Reef Trust; funding which will be directed to help local farmers reduce the impact of agricultural practices on the Reef.
The joint “Reef Alliance” bid, led by the Queensland Farmers’ Federation (QFF), focusses on maximising the effectiveness of funding dollars by bringing together the agricultural industry and regional Natural Resource Management (NRM) groups, working together with the Australian Government to support the reef.
“It is proactive partnerships such as these which have achieved real outcomes on the ground – they help growers to afford to implement often very expensive changes to farming practices faster than they otherwise would have been able. This has good outcomes for the environment and our communities up and down the coast,” says CANEGROWERS CEO Dan Galligan.
“Cane growers who live and work adjacent to the reef have been involved in a number of significant programs run by the Australian Government over the past seven years. These types of government-funded projects are held up by CANEGROWERS as a shining example of what a truly proactive partnership approach can achieve in a short amount of time,” he says.
CANEGROWERS is implementing its own best management practice program called Smartcane BMP. “Over half of Queensland’s sugarcane area has been benchmarked to best practice in just two years,” said Mr Galligan.
“We are keen to see government investment such as this targeted to supporting the positive initiatives underway within the sugarcane industry, promote continued grower buy in and build on the outcomes the industry has already delivered.”
Source – Canegrowers