Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture Richard Colbeck visited Benalla last week.MONIQUE FREER June 4, 2014 3:37am
Indi Federal Electorate Conference president Tony Schneider, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture Senator Richard Colbeck and Benalla farmer Michael Burston.
Issues facing the region’s farmers were on the agenda last Friday when the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture Richard Colbeck visited Benalla.
Senator Colbeck toured Rutherglen and Wangaratta before speaking with local farmers at the property of Benalla sheep farmer Michael Burston, in a bid to gain a greater understanding of the issues encountered by north-east residents in the agricultural sector.
‘‘It’s valuable for me to hear local farmers’ stories so that I can have that in my mind when I’m making decisions or developing policy,’’ Senator Colbeck said.
‘‘There is always a lot of localised bits and pieces that you pick up and mould into a broader story around agriculture, but picking up the local elements I find really valuable; just talking to people on the ground to see what they’re doing and how they manage their particular patch.’’
Particular challenges that were brought to Senator Colbeck’s attention included profitability, the work of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicine Authority and price pressures in the Australian market.
‘‘There’s been a few tough seasons and a lot of farmers have used up a bit of equity in their properties, and we need some good seasons to actually recover,’’ Senator Colbeck said.
‘‘There’s a whole heap of price pressures coming down the supply chain from the supermarket itself, and that’s why free trade agreements are important.
‘‘Alternative markets to the Australian market are important so that if you can’t get a decent price here you might have an opportunity to do that in some other markets and certainly the indications that we’re starting to get out of South-East Asia is that there is real opportunity in those markets providing we’ve got all those settings right.’’
Mr Burston said farmers around Benalla had done it tough in recent years, and continued to face challenges in pricing of their product.
‘‘It costs us about $180 to kill a beast and bone him; it costs just on $80 to do the same in Indonesia, USA $80 and $40 to 50 in Brazil,’’ Mr Burston said.
Senator Colbeck said the information he gathered during his visit would also contribute to the development of the Agriculture White Paper, which would be released late this year.
‘‘That is going to form the foundation that informs our core agricultural policy moving forward, bearing in mind that we committed to make it one of the five pillars of the economy at the election,’’ he said.
Greater Shepparton City Council has responded to a Facebook post slamming the organisation’s pound euthanasia rate.
The Australian Cricket Association has made the decision to postpone the Masters events scheduled for Yarrawonga this weekend in light of the serious injury to Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes.
Last week Victorian Collections passed a major milestone, with the 50000th historical object record from the state’s heritage collections uploaded to the site.
Shaun Burke, Paul Margetts, John McPherson, Peter Nesbitt and Keith Baillie spoke at Tuesday's Campaspe Shire White Ribbon Day event.
Rochester Secondary College students have finished their final exams, taking the time to relax.
Candidate for Northern Victoria Robert Danielli lays out the issues facing the region
The porblems of recent years hopefully a thing of the past.
No luck for Finley in Murray Valley cricket.
Heathcote and District Community Bank Scholarship recipient Tarlyn Grant is encouraging others to apply
A soaring new sculpture is on track to bring pride, visitors and environmental awareness to Katamatite.
SunRice chair Gerry Lawson announced his pending retirement from the board overnight.
A spring Future Orchards walks will be held at Coomboona on Friday November 28 from 9.30am.
The surpsingly vindictive but highly satisfying sport of croquet is being enjoyed by more residents of Benalla the the Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.