The new $134 million Smart Farms program – announced by Deputy Prime Minister Joyce and Assistant Minister Hartsuyker – will be welcome news to farmers, according to the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF).
NFF President Fiona Simson said Smart Farms (which is funded under the Government’s $1.1 billion allocation to the National Landcare Program) is an important investment towards a more sustainable farm sector.
“The Smart Farms program will support the promotion and adoption of best practices that improve the condition of soil, native vegetation and biodiversity – and importantly also improve productivity and profitability,” Ms Simson said.
“This sort of investment helps further Australia’s global reputation as a source of safe and sustainable food and fibre.
“The resources provided under the National Landcare Program, along with the investment made by industry and individual farmers, helps us not only talk the talk when it comes to sustainability – but also walk the walk.
“The program will provide opportunities for groups large and small to help farmers improve their sustainability. This includes small local grower groups, trial groups, sustainable farming practice groups,
Landcare groups and larger industry organisations,” Ms Simson said.
The NFF also welcomed the Government’s focus on partnerships across many aspects of the new National Landcare Program.
“We look forward to seeing projects funded that harness the knowledge, experience and networks of agriculture, natural resource management, science, and conservation organisations to promote positive change.
“We strongly encourage groups large or small to put forward their project ideas in the upcoming grant rounds. Ultimately, the success of this investment will depend on the quality of projects that are put forward for funding,” Ms Simson concluded.