Tasmania's agriculture sector on target to hit $10 billion
Tasmania remains on track to grow the agriculture sector to a $10 billion-a-year industry by 2050 says Primary Industries Minister Guy Barnett.
He said agriculture was a key pillar of the Tasmanian economy, with the latest Agri-Food scorecard confirming 2017-18 was an exceptional year, growing 9.1 per cent to an annual value of $1.60 billion.
"Tasmania's Agri-Food Scorecard 2017-2018 shows we have what the world wants and the Tasmanian brand is delivering real business outcomes, with record overseas food exports of $740 million," Mr Barnett said.
"The report shows we are on track to grow the value of Tasmania's agriculture sector to $10 billion a year by 2050, driving investment in regional areas and creating local jobs.
"Key contributors include dairy, beef, fruit and major vegetable crops all recording strong export growth. Each of these products is benefiting from Tasmania's continued GMO free status, which provides access to premium markets across the globe."
Mr Barnett said that to ensure Tasmania's agriculture sector continue to thrive, the government had recently launched our Sustainable Agri-Food Plan 2019-23, our blueprint for continued growth.
"We are backing agriculture with $100 million in the 2019-20 Budget to boost border biosecurity (20 new biosecurity jobs), research and innovation, farm productivity, new market development, reducing on-farm energy costs and the roll out of Tranche 3 irrigation schemes across the state."
He also pointed to the latest Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey, showing farmer optimism had continued to grow - with the state's rural sector reporting overall strong profit projections and robust investment plans for the year ahead.
"We are mindful that Tasmania is a state of two halves, while some areas have a promising season ahead, others are continuing to manage drought conditions, which is why we continue to work closely with farmers and rural communities in drought affected areas," Mr Barnett said.
"Having consulted and listened, the Government is delivering $400,000 in targeted drought support to complement the existing Federal assistance programs and continued investment in irrigation.
"Only the Hodgman majority Liberal Government has a strong vision and Plan to grow a competitive, and profitable farming sector that cares for farming communities when they need it."
Source: The Advocate - https://www.theadvocate.com.au/story/6441390/ag-industry-on-target/