DAIRY farmers around Australia are today being celebrated for their hard work, dedication and commitment to producing trusted and nutritious products.
Wednesday November 21 marks the second annual National Agriculture Day, an initiative of the National Farmers Federation (NFF) with support from key industry partners, including Australian Dairy Farmers.
ADF President Terry Richardson said the dairy industry was a key contributor to Australia’s agricultural sector, and a major employer in rural and regional areas.
“The dairy industry is a major economic driver, representing a supply chain value of $13.7 billion,” Mr Richardson said.
“Our industry employs more than 42,000 people across the supply chain in both regional and rural centres, and every year Australian dairy farmers produce around 9 billion litres of milk.”
“Ag Day is a way of thanking farmers for the contribution they make to supplying Australian families with food and fibre.”
An annual poll commissioned by the NFF found 83 per cent of respondents had no, or a very distant, connection with farmers, while 67 per cent of people surveyed said they had no engagement with farmers over the past 12 months.
But the most alarming statistic showed 23 per cent of young Australians aged 18-29 don’t care how their food and fibre is produced.
Given its importance to the economy and society, Mr Richardson said it was important to better connect consumers with the sector.
“The Australian agricultural sector is valued at about $60 billion annually and is consistently ranked among our country’s top export industries,” Mr Richardson said.
The dairy industry is Australia’s third biggest agricultural industry, behind the beef and wheat sectors, but ranks fourth in terms of world dairy trade, with a 6 per cent share and an export value of more than $3.3 billion.
“Australians should be very proud of their dairy industry,” Mr Richardson said. “We’re world leaders in producing clean, green and nutritious dairy products and our sustainable practices are recognised internationally as some of the best in the world.”
National Ag Day is being celebrated at events and functions across Australia. More information is available at www.agday.org.au.
Ashley Mackinnon, Public Affairs Manager
M: 0407 766 153