Regional communities and farming families have more opportunity to grow than ever before under the Andrews Labor Government, stakeholders at the Victorian Farmers Federation quarterly luncheon have heard.
Addressing the luncheon today, Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford, reinforced the Labor Government’s commitment to grow Victoria’s $11 billion food and fibre industry, build industry capacity, grow exports and support the creation of new jobs.
The Labor Government’s 2015-16 Victorian Budget makes investing in agriculture a priority. An improved regional rail network and funding for farmer health services will give rural communities and farming families the support they deserve, while the Murray Basin Rail Project will standardise rail freight services and increase efficiency.
The Labor Government’s $20 million Food Source Victoria program is bringing neighbouring producers together to boost exports and grow local industries; ensuring Victorian producers are better connected, better trained and better supported.
Food Source Victoria will also allocate $2 million for a scholarship program to better equip regional Victorians to develop the skills and knowledge they need to grow our economy. At least $1 million will be allocated to supporting women to develop their skills and find opportunities in our growing food and fibre market.
Ms Pulford said the Labor Government’s major investment in Victoria’s regional rail network will improve efficiency, while the Murray Basin Rail Project will improve access to ports, ensuring our farmers and producers stay at the head of the pack.
The Labor Government has also put the health and wellbeing of farmers and farming families first by saving the National Centre for Farmer Health, while the $500 million Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund will support new and emerging industries and invest in projects to grow our regional communities.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford
“We’re investing in food and fibre now so our growers and farmers can stay competitive, continue to grow and lead the world.”
“By upgrading rail networks, supporting our local producers and improving farmer health, we’re getting on with strengthening regional and rural communities and our farming families.”
“Agriculture is an important pillar of our economy and farming families are at its heart. We’re working hard so that they have every opportunity to prosper.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020