1 November 2012
Australia’s agricultural industries need to farm smarter, not harder, to raise productivity and preserve the environment according to a new report launched in Canberra today.
Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Sid Sidebottom welcomed the launch of the report Farming Smarter, Not Harder: Securing our agricultural economy and said it reinforced the importance of innovation in Australia’s agricultural industry.
“The report recognises the challenges and opportunities for farmers in the coming decades, and emphasises the importance of innovation in identifying how we can do things better,” Mr Sidebottom said.
“It also highlights the need to look after our land and soil assets to raise production and maintain viability.”
Prepared by the Centre for Policy Development and funded through the Ian Potter Foundation, Farming Smarter, Not Harder says Australian agriculture can build a lasting competitive advantage through innovation, raising agricultural productivity, minimising fuel and fertiliser use, and preserving the environment and resources it draws on.
The report also identifies the need to diversify farm revenue sources to ensure more reliable incomes, and to prepare for challenges including drought and floods.
“Farming Smarter, Not Harder reinforces the significance of the appointment last week of Major General Michael Jeffery as Australia’s first Advocate for Soil Health, which the Prime Minister announced at the NFF Congress,” Mr Sidebottom said.
“This report supports the need for an Advocate for Soil Health, and I look forward to Major General Jeffery taking on this important role and bringing soil into the spotlight.”
The Centre for Policy Development is a progressive think tank dedicated to seeking out creative, viable ideas and innovative research to inject into Australia’s policy debates.
Farming Smarter, Not Harder is the second in a series of CPD reports that examine how different sectors of Australia’s economy can benefit from policies to preserve the environment and the resources that sustain them.
The report is available online at the Centre for Policy Development’s website.
More information about the important role our soil plays.