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Government grants $1.5 million for primary industries

Primary industries, from dairy farming to winemaking, will become more profitable and sustainable through Australian Government grants totalling around $1.5 million. Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Peter McGauran, today announced eight grants of between $20,000 and $420,000 to support the industries as they work to resolve significant issues and capitalise on opportunities for further growth. “The funding will help these industries expand their markets domestically and internationally, increase their ability to adapt to change, undertake training, and improve their organisational structures,” Mr McGauran said. “For example, the dairy industry will receive regional grants to assist dairy farmers in northern New South Wales and Queensland deal with the impact of increasing climate variability. “Wine grape growers in the Murray Valley wine region will use their grant to pursue marketing and value-adding opportunities and make their supply chain more efficient. “Western Dairy will implement a training scheme and develop an ‘employer of choice’ accreditation programme for Western Australian dairy farmers. “The pork industry will analyse the life cycle of pork production, and will use its findings to improve efficiency and plan for the future. “Cattle farmers in the Northern Territory will use their grant to expand the range of South-East Asian export markets available to the Australian cattle industry.” The projects will be funded and managed through the Australian Government’s Advancing Agricultural Industries program. Murray Valley Winegrowers Inc was given one of the largest slices of the grant money with $172,200 (GST inclusive) allocated. This representative body for winegrape growers in the Murray-Darling and Swan Hill regions will look to potential alternatives to enable development of supply options for wine grape growers facing an unsustainable future. The project will also extend value-adding opportunities through product branding for Murray Valley region-sourced wine, and develop programs to foster continuous improvement in vineyard management and information-sharing to generate efficiencies in the supply chain.

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