PRIMARY Producers SA has officially become a member of the National Farmers’ Federation.
The announcement was made at the Growing SA 2017 conference in Hahndorf today, after the news leaked in Canberra yesterday.
NFF president Fiona Simson said SA was an agricultural powerhouse and significant contributor to national farm production.
“In 2015-16, Australian agricultural production reached $60 billion, of this, SA contributed $18.6b.
“SA punches above its weight in livestock production, dairy, broadacre grain, horticulture, seafood and viticulture.
“We are delighted to have PPSA agree to join the NFF and we look forward to working with farmers in this fantastic state to enhance our national voice.”
Ms Simson said the inclusion of SA would provide another dimension to NFF’s representation of the interests of Australian farmers.
“SA farmers, like their counterparts across the country, will benefit from NFF’s nationally coordinated and unified representation on issues such as trade; infrastructure; biosecurity and pest management; tax and regulation; and energy and environment.
“With PPSA now a member of the NFF, we will have a clearer, direct contact line with SA farmers, to better understand the issues impacting them and the solutions they need to further increase production and profitability.”
PPSA is a coalition of five commodity groups including Grain Producers SA, Livestock SA, SA Dairyfarmers’ Association, Horticulture Coalition of SA and Winegrape Council of SA.
PPSA executive chairman Rob Kerin said NFF membership would provide SA farmers with enhanced input into important national policy discussions.
"After 10 years of SA farmers not having a direct link with the NFF, we are looking forward to bringing SA’s perspective on important issues, such as market access, freight efficiency and biosecurity, to the national table,” he said.
“PPSA’s aim has always been to be the united voice of SA’s primary production industries, and we believe representation on the national stage, through NFF, will help us to get a better deal for SA farmers.
"We look forward to working with the NFF team and thank president Fiona Simson and CEO Tony Mahar for their enthusiasm in having SA back at the table."
The NFF consists of more than 30 state and commodity representative bodies.