Kim Chance

Kim Chance

Minister for Agriculture and Food; Forestry; the Mid West and Wheatbelt; Great Southern

    $158million Budget commitment to agriculture

    9/05/2008 12:00 AM

    The State Government will invest $158million into agriculture and food, including $68.5million in regional projects, as part of the 2008-09 Budget.


    Agriculture and Food Minister Kim Chance said the Department of Agriculture and Food’s budget included $42million for biosecurity initiatives and $45million for natural resource management.


    Mr Chance said a significant proportion of the $45million committed to natural resource management will go towards the development and implementation of the State Salinity Strategy and more money will be allocated to NRM research.


    Major Budget initiatives for 2008-09 include:

    ·      $126million for the relocation of the Department of Agriculture and Food headquarters to Murdoch;

    ·      $125million over five years to natural resource management as part of the national Caring for our Country program;

    ·      $60.3million for the transfer of Department of Agriculture and Food research staff to the Agricultural Research Western Australia research centres.

    ·      $4.7million for Quarantine WA to regulate the movement of vehicles, machinery, plants, fruit and vegetables, flowers, seeds and other quarantine risk items into WA; 

    ·      $4million co-investment with InterGrain Pty Ltd to breed better wheat varieties for WA and parts of south-east Australia.  InterGrain is the incorporated wheat breeding joint venture between the State Government and the Grains Research and Development Corporation; 

    ·      $2.3million co-investment with the Grains Research and Development Corporation to breed better barley varieties for neutral to acid soil types;

    ·      $1.8million co-investment with the Grains Research and Development Corporation to breed better lupin varieties for WA;

    ·      $1.1million over four years to develop land and water packages in the rangelands, particularly in the north, to increase the gross value of agricultural production from the region;

    ·      $1million for the development of the WA Food industry. 

    ·      $1million over three years to support the Buy West, Eat Best program enabling the community to identify fresh and processed products which have been farmed, fished or grown in WA;

    ·      $720,000 for biosecurity communications and awareness, including the operation of the Pest and Diseases Information Service;

    ·      $680,000 for wine industry development including access to and the rapid release of new premium wine grape varieties, clones and rootstocks and new market development in the USA and Asia;  

    ·      $550,000 for soil management in cropping systems including controlled traffic systems, nutrient cycling and soil acidity; 

    ·      $526,000 for the Coastal Catchments Initiative with a focus on the Swan-Canning and Vasse-Wonnerup/Geographe Bay catchments; 

    ·      $500,000 to continue climate forecasting research and to develop climate risk management strategies for the agricultural and pastoral regions;

    ·      $500,000 to establish a node of Food Science Australia in Perth, initially concentrating on grain based food research but with a view to expansion into other food sectors of importance to WA; and 

    ·      $400,000 for sheep meat research in areas such as sheep meat eating quality, productivity, alliance development, genetic improvement and consistency of lamb supplies.


    Mr Chance said from the $41.7million committed to biosecurity, $2million would be spent to increase the State’s capability in managing significant threats such as Foot and Mouth Disease, Mad Cow Disease and Avian Influenza.


    “A further $300,000 has been provided as the State Government’s contribution to the Footrot Control Program, which is now primarily funded by the sheep industry,” he said.


    “An additional $1.6million will be spent on the completion of a new quarantine stock yard facility at Kalgoorlie.


    “For the control of wild dogs and other animal pest research, $360,000 has been invested, focusing on the development of more effective control methods and managing associated risks.  A further $2.45million has been provided to continue the eradication of European starlings.”


    The Minister said $600,000 had also been allocated to the implementation of the new Biosecurity and Agricultural Management Act, including the development of regulations, development of specialised information and training packages, staff training and public communications.


    Mr Chance said continuing to provide opportunities for primary producers and indigenous landholders to undertake training programs to better manage their business risks and improve their skills base was important.


    “As a consequence, the Government will invest $1.5million in the ‘Building the Adaptive Capacity of Agriculture’ program,” he said.


    “This program is an extension of the successful FarmBis program, and will provide additional training for indigenous landholders such as the M G Corporation (Yawoorroong Miriuwung Gajerrong Yirrgeb Noong Dawang Aboriginal Corporation) and their future in agriculture in the Ord River Basin.”


    Minister's office - 9213 6700