Qld shines bright at Hort Connections
IF THE AUSVEG Grower of the Year award was a State of Origin competition Queensland would be the clear front runner, with our growers winning four times over the past five years.
This year’s winner, announced at the 2017 Hort Connections conference, was Lockyer Valley grower Anthony Staatz, from Koala Farms.
Anthony and his wife Diane are well-known for their industry-leading innovation and high quality employment practices.
Growcom was extremely proud to participate as a co-host of this year’s historic Hort Connections conference held in Adelaide.
This was the first time AUSVEG and PMA Australia-New Zealand Limited (PMA A-NZ) delivered a joint industry conference and trade show.
The conference was by all reports a success, with more than 2500 local and international delegates attending and more than 200 trade show stalls.
Growcom used the event to launch the Fair Farms Initiative and conduct a workplace relations workshop.
Assistant Minister for Agriculture Senator Ann Ruston, who formally launched Fair Farms, held it up as an example of industry taking the initiative to solve its own problems.
As chief executive officer of Growcom, I could not have been more proud of our Queensland horticulture industry and the Growcom team that supports it.
It is for this reason I would like to see a greater acknowledgement and emphasis within Queensland of horticulture leading the way.
Horticulture (production and nursery) is collectively Queensland’s second largest agricultural farm gate commodity after beef, but it often feels like we are the poor cousin when it comes to media attention and government engagement.
As a sector, horticulture is a fascinating and diverse industry with incredibly innovative growers and businesses.
While we don’t have the geographic footprint of other industries, we contribute more than $2 billion annually to the economy and continue to be a major employer throughout rural and regional Queensland.
Growcom looks forward to co-hosting the Hort Connections conference in Brisbane next year and showcasing the best the Queensland horticulture industry alongside the state government with media.