Dairy industry gets hit from all directions
FLOODS, crop losses, infrastructure damage and cow health issues meant last year was the hardest year Gympie branch Queensland Dairyfarmers Organisation chairman Matthew Trace could recall.
Mr Trace spoke at the recent annual dinner meeting.
"Deregulation was pretty bad, but last year had floods, crop losses, infrastructure damage, severe cow health issues and pasture damage," he said.
Mr Trace who runs his dairy on the Mary River in the Kenilworth region said damage in many areas was so bad that farmers could not continue to farm.
"Cow health issues as a factor of almost continuous wet weather for half the year cost a lot to treat, as well as lower production.
Mr Trace said that as well as increased expenditures many farm inputs have increased.
"We need electricity to operate irrigation pumps, we need to irrigate to produce, but we are not getting enough for our milk," he said.
He said there is something dramatically wrong with the market system in which there is a shortage of supply but the price goes down.
"We have been waiting for market forces to kick in, but they do not appear to be going to," he said.
Mr Trace said the recent Farmers Feed Us All group may help with getting the message across to the public and governments and allowing farmers to achieve a fair return for their role as providers of some of the best quality food in the world.
As part of the flood disaster relief the QDO had been contacting dairy farmers to let them know all the avenues of assistance that were available to them.
- Re-elected as chairman Matthew Trace, secretary/treasurer Kylie Brown, Bells Bridge, vice-chairman Gary Wheeler, Kandanga, Owen Brown committee member and Rob Priebe as MRCCC delegate.
- Retiring secretary/treasurer Linda Roszynski was thanked for her long and dedicated service.