Farming is green by nature
FARMERS multitask as a matter of course. It ensures that we run efficient profitable and sustainable businesses. It’s just what we do.
As farmers the one thing we tend not to do is crow about our own successes. Sometimes this is a good thing, but equally this can mean the community doesn’t have a full understanding of what farmers contribute to our wonderful state.
A good example of this is the environmental services farmers provide to the community. While many of agriculture’s critics often promote a contrary view, farmers provide a wide range of environmental services daily, and they do it willingly and with pride.
We are often the custodians of habitats for not only endangered species, but the general flora and fauna of the state. We actively look to find sustainable ways to operate our farms.
Yes, we do that with a sense of community obligation, but fundamentally if we fail to do so, we will not have a viable business for ourselves or our children. We have a vested interest in ensuring the natural environment remains in balance and remains sustainable.
Primarily, this is why the TFGA has taken such a strong stance on protecting our biosecurity. A breach of our biosecurity represents a potentially catastrophic threat to our businesses and the natural environment. The desire of some to introduce more and more exotic species into the state is one example of the short-sightedness that puts at risk our environment and livelihoods.
The protection of our endangered species is again something farmers take very seriously. We are constantly looking for ways to ensure our impact on them is minimised.
This is an ongoing process that needs mitigation and adaptation and we do this at our own cost and in our own time. It is this commitment we need to explain to the broader community. For too long we have allowed those opposed to modern agriculture to peddle views that do not reflect the reality on the land.
The society we enjoy today would not have been possible if farmers had not adapted and had not done so in a sustainable way.
Yes, mistakes have been made in the past, but we have learned from those and we will continue to learn. Farmers have always viewed the natural environment as an integral part of the life all of us on the land enjoy. Any erosion of that is simply unacceptable.