Minister for Regional Development Jaala Pulford and Minister for Planning Richard Wynne are appointing an advisory committee to examine how the planning system can better support Victorian farmers and agriculture.
Competing land use pressures and residential living in rural areas has caused problems for farmers across industries and local government has struggled to apply planning definitions to animal husbandry permits.
The new Animal Industries Advisory Committee will report on changing farming practices and efforts to boost production, and look at ways the planning system could be updated.
Ms Pulford said that the Andrews Labor Government is working to deliver clearer rules and greater confidence for farmers and councils, while balancing environmental concerns and community expectations.
Mr Wynne has called in a planning case which was headed to the Tribunal after a council ruled against a wagyu beef farmer’s application for a permit in June.
Mr Wynne said that case raised questions about common sense rules and regulations around the definition of intensive and extensive animal husbandry, and the Department is now preparing its advice for his assessment.
The Labor Government is growing the agriculture sector to encourage jobs growth and establish Victoria as the country’s eminent state for food production.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Regional Development Jaala Pulford
"Agriculture is at the heart of Victoria's economy. We need to support this critical $11 billion sector to grow and prosper into the future."
"The new Advisory Committee will ensure we have the right laws in place to support this growth, and make life easier for our farmers by reducing red tape."
Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning Richard Wynne
"Planning laws need to keep pace with changes to farming, we are making sure rules around farmland underpin one of Victoria's most vital industries.”
"Calling in Mr Blackmore's case is the first step in my assessment, which I will make with advice from the planning department. I will not pre-empt the final outcome.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020