Cane farmers strike at pollies with ball and chain
Sugarcane farmers have latched a ball and chain onto politicians to animate their continued frustration over reef regulations.
In a video posted to YouTube, Canegrowers explained its key complaints against the Queensland and federal governments and why it advocated for the Smartcane BMP program instead of “onerous” laws.
CEO Dan Galligan said it was important to show why the decade-long fight had angered the agricultural industry in Great Barrier Reef Catchment area.
“It has been a complex campaign and we need to do all we can to explain the toxic link between unjustifiable farm management practice targets, unfair Reef Report Cards and the state push to keep ramping up regulation on farmers,” Mr Galligan said.
“We have 80 per cent of sugarcane growers voluntarily engaged in a program, that is recognised internationally, to improve sustainability as well as cane farm productivity and profitability.
“But government reef-focused reporting ignores that effort and tells the industry it is failing – it’s no wonder growers are up in arms.
“It would appear growers are being set up to fail no matter what they do and how hard they work.”
Mr Galligan said the organisation had successfully advocated for a review of reporting processes and reef water quality targets.
“We welcome the reviews agreed to by the Federal and Queensland environment ministers earlier this year and Canegrowers is closely involved in discussions on the terms of reference for them,” Mr Galligan said.
“This is a good first step provided the reviews genuinely address the fundamental underlying problems that this animation outlines.”