Cobram fruit growers in disarray but not defeated, after Federal Government’s decision not to contribute $25 million to SPC Ardmona.TONI BRIENT February 5, 2014 4:20am
The Federal Government’s decision not to contribute $25
SPC Ardmona asked the Victorian government for the same contribution, which Premier Denis Napthine did not accept or reject during his visit to the company’s Shepparton plant on Friday.
RJ Cornish director James Cornish from Cobram said he was one of SPC Ardmona’s largest peach and pear suppliers.
‘‘I guess to say we’re disappointed is an understatement,’’ Mr Cornish said.
‘‘I thought SPC had a good case.’’
Victorian Peach and Apricot Growers Association president and Cobram orchardist Tony Latina said while the lack of financial support from government was disappointing, it didn’t signal the end of the industry.
Mr Latina said it would be up to SPC Ardmona to plan its next move, including the future of the cannery.
The Latina Fruits director said the lack of funding would be felt by fruit growers in Cobram.
‘‘It wont be as severe as Shepparton, but it still will have an impact,’’ he said.
‘‘For the largest growers, like RJ Cornish, it will have a big impact.’’
Mr Cornish said Cobram growers had already survived a round of SPC Ardmona’s cost-cutting measures, and was confident growers could continue to thrive.
‘‘There’s already been impact with a lot of growers struck off the list last year,’’ he said.
‘‘I sold land and knocked orchards out.’’
Mr Cornish said growers could adapt by growing fresh fruit instead of cannery varieties, for example.
Mr Latina said many local growers had already begun adapting, with the government’s latest decision proving the agricultural sector was ‘‘not getting any support’’.
He said low import tariffs offered little protection to local farmers, and contributed to SPC Ardmona’s financial difficulty.
‘‘(The government) seem to be turning a cold shoulder on us,’’ he said.
‘‘Every other country in the world looks after agriculture more.
‘‘Here in Australia we always seem to be fending for ourselves.’’
However, Mr Latina said Cobram farmers who supplied to SPC Ardmona should be optimistic about their futures.
‘‘I’m not alarmed,’’ he said. ‘‘We’ll wait and see what happens.
‘‘We won’t know until (SPC Ardmona) review everything properly.’
See more SPC Ardmona stories in this week’s Cobram Courier.
Community urged to back proposed Shepparton drug help facility, as site search continues.
In a tight tense affair, the Yarrawonga Pigeons have defeated the Wodonga Bulldogs by 28 points at the JC Lowe Oval in Yarrawonga.
Tatura Community House held its annual High Tea fundraiser at the facility on Tuesday, with a full-house present to enjoy a sumptuous morning tea, good conversation and relaxing time together.
ECHUCA hospital’s Make Your Mark campaign has passed the $3 million mark.
LEITCHVILLE-GUNBOWER maintained an incredible 10-0 start to the Heathcote league season on Saturday with a crushing 18-goal win over Lockington-Bamawm United at Leitchville Oval.
Last quarter saves potential calamity
Seymour Lions score a close win against Echuca
Scores of local farmers and concerned community groups will travel to Barham today to protest the Murray Darling Basin Plan in front of key Senators and Members of Parliament.
District emergency services were on high alert on Sunday after a 35-year-old Craigieburn man went missing in the Knowsley State Forest.
Police are treating a fire at a Cobram East orchard as suspicious with an estimated damage bill of $40000.
An exciting three-hole playoff saw Virginia Lange take a narrow win in the Deniliquin Ladies Golf Championship last Thursday.
Individual district pricing will eventually be abolished in a proposed major structural change to Goulburn-Murray Water’s water pricing.
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.