The National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) has released a new policy roadmap aimed at propelling agriculture towards $100 billion in farm gate output by 2030.
The 2030 Roadmap, released today at the NFF’s National Congress in Canberra, calls for coordinated action to accelerate the industry’s growth.
NFF President Fiona Simson says the Roadmap sends a clear message that the industry is ready to do things differently.
“Modelling by AgriFutures Australia suggests that a business as usual approach will see us grow to around $84 billion in farm gate output by 2030 – but we know that by making smart choices we can go much further,” Ms Simson said.
Ms Simson said the drought currently crippling much of Eastern Australia underscores the importance of a strong farm sector.
“Right now we’re seeing first hand that when farming suffers a seasonal downturn, the impacts are widespread.
“But the converse is also true. A thriving farm sector means more vibrant regional communities, and more jobs right along the value chain.
“We’re lucky to have some great fundamentals fuelling our growth – notably a booming middle class on our Asian doorstep which values Australian food and fibre.
“At the same time we’re facing stiff new competition, as emerging competitors modernise their farming systems and export greater volumes into our key markets.
We can’t take our growth for granted. We need a clear plan and a collaborative effort. That’s what the 2030 Roadmap seeks to achieve.
Ms Simson emphasised however that the 2030 Roadmap was not simply a plan for growth, it also sets a course for a more innovative, safe and sustainable industry.
“By 2030 we want the industry to be advanced on its journey towards carbon neutrality. We’re committing to back policies and investments that will cement Australia as a global leader in low-emissions agriculture.”
The 2030 Roadmap also sets an aspiration to end on-farm fatalities.
“Last year 41 workers were killed on Australian farms. While it may not be feasible to cut this number to zero in the coming decade, we can’t aim for anything less.”
The aspirations and targets in the Roadmap are the result of detailed industry consultation – including the national Talking 2030 Roadshow which brought together almost 400 industry leaders.
“Our thanks must go to all those who volunteered their time to work with us on the Roadmap. It’s been a true industry-wide approach – from workshop attendees to industry organisations and members who have helped us set our future direction.
“In particular, we also thank Telstra for partnering with us on the Talking 2030 Roadshow and resourcing the enormous consultation effort which underpins the Roadmap.”
Ms Simson said the hard work of delivering the plan begins now.
We are calling on industry and government to get behind the Roadmap. The NFF cannot achieve the aspirations we’ve set in isolation. Success will require a team effort.
Specifically, the NFF is calling on government to commit to a National Agriculture Strategy which will guide supporting policies and investment.
“Government has a critical role to play in delivering on the Roadmap.
“We need a coordinated commitment from all tiers of government, which isn’t subject to short-term political cycles.
“A National Agriculture Strategy – developed in close consultation with industry and endorsed by COAG – is a critical next step.”
Prime Minister Scott Morison reiterated his commitment to the Ag Visa in his address to the NFF’s National Congress on Thursday 18 October. After doing so se signed on to commit to the NFF’s vision for a $100 billion agricultural industry by 2030.
The NFF will commence an annual reporting cycle to measure performance against the Roadmap.
“To keep the Roadmap front of mind for all stakeholders, the NFF will release an annual report card which tracks our progress against key metrics.
“This will keep us, the broader industry, and government accountable to the plan.”
“We’re excited to start working with our members and stakeholders on getting this plan underway.
“It marks an exciting new chapter for the NFF and we hope it will play a valuable role in guiding our progress as an industry,” Ms Simson concluded.
For a full copy of the Roadmap, click here.