Agriculture is one of the Five Pillars of Tasmania's Future economy. Already it employs 20,000 Tasmanians and is forecast to generate almost $1 billion at the farm gate in 2012. Tasmania has an opportunity to build on this vital industry and the Liberals bold vision for agriculture is aimed at growing the sector tenfold to $10 billion, by 2050. With an emphasis on investment, innovation, research, skills development, sustainability and long term post-farm gate value adding, the Liberal plan commits $4.95 million over 4 years to work toward achieving growth and diversity in the industry. Our initiatives include: $1.5 mil investment in Water for Profit program - to ensure farmers are equipped with the right skills and information to maximize their investment in irrigation. This includes soil mapping, land capability and crop sustainability assessments, market demand appraisals and outlooks, research and extension information. $900,000 boost to Border Protection - an extra investment in frontline surveillance infrastructure and resources including quarantine detector dog teams to protect our state, our agricultural industry and our brand. $800,000 Research and Development Innovation Collaboration Fund - to better align agricultural research with the goals of farmers and industry. $600,000 investment in On Farm Productivity Management Planning - to deliver programs with practical on the ground applications which will assist farmers boost productivity and reduce costs. $450,000 Agriculture Skills Development Plan - to better align skills required in the farming sector with education and training. $250,000 for a Low interest HECs-style loan scheme - to give farmers, fruit growers and agri-food businesses the financial support to turn great ideas into long term profit making enterprises. $450,000 to back Private Forests - we will tear up the IGA and invest in a Private Forest Industry Development Program to support and help grow this sector by providing practical grower initiatives and extension services. Bio-energy and bio-fuel will also be explored as options for wood waste. The Liberals believe there is a bright future for agriculture in Tasmania and we will invest to grow the industry, encourage innovation and value add to what is already a strong sector of the economy.
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Authorised by Sam McQuestin, Level 2/24 Murray Street, Hobart TAS 7000 | Updated 19 June 2013 | Admin