NSW Farmers members are reminded to put July 19 - 21 in their diaries to attend the 2022 NSW Farmers Annual Conference, the premier policy-making opportunity for NSW agriculture.
Held at the iconic Luna Park in Sydney, this year's conference will be the first in-person event in three years after COVID-19 impacted our usual format. With a state election around the corner in March 2023, this conference is particularly important.
After successive natural disasters - including the "rolling disaster" of recent flooding and heavy rainfall - response and recovery will be a key area of debate, with flood warnings and disaster insurance premiums front of mind.
The biosecurity threats of lumpy skin disease and foot-and-mouth disease will be a key discussion area. The threat of disease incursions has also thrust national traceability back in the spotlight, and conference will provide a forum to debate the systems used in the cattle, sheep meat, and wool industries.
With accelerated growth during the pandemic, regional areas are increasingly attracting the attention of policymakers. Annual Conference will enable delegates to speak on the regional health, telecommunications, roads, and education needs of the bush. A proposal for more media to be produced west of the Great Dividing Range is just one example of how members see more opportunity moving to regional areas.
The pandemic has triggered conversations on supply chain resilience, and a surge in fuel prices has led members to propose a range of solutions for making the key input cheaper and more accessible. Members will also discuss feasible diesel alternatives such as hydrogen and biofuels to complement existing options.
The state agriculture sector is having a positive run, with 100 per cent of the state out of drought and commodity prices at an all-time high. However, more work needs to be done to shape the next chapter. Annual Conference is a prime opportunity for members to get involved in policy debate, and for a grassroots organisation such as NSW Farmers, every voice truly counts.
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