The NSW government has announced it will spearhead a campaign for the establishment of a nationwide income-protection scheme to protect farmers from the financial impacts of future droughts.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro said the NSW government allocated $2 million to investigate, in partnership with the National Farmers Federation, the potential risk-mitigation models that could be used to protect farm incomes during natural disasters.
“Our primary producers are facing one of the worst droughts in living memory and the NSW Government wants to make sure our farmers have the ability to endure the harsh conditions that Mother Nature can often throw their way,” Barilaro said. “That’s why we’re putting cash on the table to go to work with the National Farmers Federation and identify potential models that could be used to protect farmers against income loss in future droughts or even natural disasters. We’re starting with a blank canvas here in terms of what a potential scheme could look like and that’s why it’s important all parties come together and work collaboratively to design a scheme that genuinely benefits farmers.”
Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall said the national income-protection scheme was the best measure the government can deliver to help the agricultural industry combat the devastating loss of income that comes with drought and other natural events.
“What we’re looking at here is something completely new: a national scheme that all farmers, regardless of what they grow and the size of their operation, can buy into and be permanently covered by,” Marshall said. “We’re putting money on the table and are determined to get this up and running. The Commonwealth and all other state governments need to get involved and back this in too.”